Wilacre Park: The Neighborhood Hike
Hiking Wilacre Park is more like hiking three parks in one without realizing it. Wilacre, Coldwater Canyon and Fryman Canyon parks all sort of merge into each other without any sort of warning of boundary lines. Take the Cross Mountain Park trail system a little further and you'll hit Franklin Canyon Park.
There is something simple about going to Wilacre: if you want to get outdoors and "away from things," Wilacre couldn't be easier - a 2.3 mile loop starting a parking lot at Laurel Canyon Blvd. and Fryman Rd., a few blocks south of Ventura Blvd. in Studio City.
Exasperated with hikers avoiding the $3 rate, neighbors got the surrounding streets to be preferential parking. As a compromise, the parking lot is now an honorary $1.
If you lose your breath on the steep hill that starts off the Betty B. Dearing trail, you know you need to hike more. You'll feel especially bad when runners pass you by. A little less of a quarter mile in steepness, the hill will climb gradually and easily. One mile in, your descent starts and welcome to Coldwater Canyon Park, home of TreePeople. Keep going down and eventually you'll hit a cul de sac (Iredell Ln.), which will lead you to Iredell St.: this is the suburban homes part of the hike (If you keep your eyes open, you can wander onto the hidden Rainforest Trail in Fryman Canyon). Iredell St. will take you to Fryman Rd. where you'll hang a left, taking you to the parking lot.
Pictures begin after the jump.