Walk in the Woods
Story and Photos By Jacob Ybarra
Long Beach is a beautiful city with lots of peaceful locations, but if you’re seeking a true outdoor adventure that’s a short drive away, the Palos Verdes Peninsula is a must-visit destination. Throughout the entire peninsula, one can partake in a range of activities whether you’re an avid outdoorsman in search of a challenge or would rather relax and take in the lush greenery.
George F Canyon Preserve and Nature Center
Located in the heart of the peninsula, this nature trail is filled with dense brush and colorful flowers. Following a shallow stream up the length of the canyon, visitors of the nature preserve can easily get sidetracked, as the towering willow trees and refreshing scents of coastal sage, along with the occasional horseback rider, make you forget that you’re actually just minutes outside of the city of Los Angeles. Speaking of Los Angeles, for those who make it to the top of the canyon trail, you are rewarded with a picture-perfect view of the Los Angeles basin, nestled just beyond the landscape of the preserve.
Forrestal Nature Reserve
Located along the ocean-facing hillsides, the Forrestal Nature Reserve provides the perfect balance of greenery and views, as you can get lost in the brush for one moment, then stumble upon the beauty of the Pacific Ocean in the next. Hiking trails range from beginner to intermediate difficulties, and with over 15 trails available to explore within the 155-acre park, and countless more in the connecting Filiorum and Portuguese Bend Reserves, you can embrace the beautiful hillsides for as little or as long as you’d like.
Del Cerro Park
Located at the top of the hill, where Crenshaw Boulevard comes to an end, Del Cerro Park offers a little bit of everything, providing one of the best coastal views in all of Los Angeles County, as well as being the central hub for most of the hiking trails throughout the entire peninsula. This spot is especially beautiful at sunset, as you get an unobstructed view of the sun as it travels beyond the reach of the horizon.