Being an L.A. native, I pride myself on knowing my fair share of the city’s nooks and crannies. So it was with shock and awe that I explored the oasis that is Fern Dell Canyon in Griffith Park for the first time this morning ó shocked that I’d never ever even heard of it and awed at how picturesque and serene a place it is ó and literally little more than a stone’s throw north of Los Feliz Boulevard just east of where it collides with Western Avenue. For a better view, click the image at right.
From Fern Dell Drive, the entrance is clearly marked and includes an historical marker indicating the area was once the site of a Gabrielino Indian village. The first part of the hike is a stroll through a lush and beautiful grotto, with a flowing brook coursing down the center and crossed by several short footbridges. Once beyond that you’ll cross a picnic/play area and soon find yourself climbing up the West Observatory Trail, which offers an awesome vista of the city just below the still-under-construction observatory. All told the elevation gained from the grotto to the top is about 500 feet and roundtrip distance is 2.59 miles. But if you just need a quick getaway, only a few steps into the grotto and you’ll have one.
There’s a couple more pictures after the jump.