“Debatably one of the most popular routes in L.A., get above the city on this short-but-sweet loop.
— Zander Göpfert
Given its proximity to West Hollywood and easy access, it's no wonder why this loop is one of L.A.'s most popular runs. This route heads north into the hills of Runyon Canyon Park with some steep grades to start that are rewarded with panoramic views of the city and surrounding hills.
Closed dusk - dawn.
Recent trail work has been underway to repave sections of trail in the park and to add water fountains. Please respect all signage and closures.
Need to Know
Some say there is a Runyon Canyon prophecy that you can't complete this run without seeing at least one celebrity.
A moderate loop in length with some sections of fairly steep climbing and descending. The recent trail work has added a number of water fountains to the Runyon Canyon Rd
trail and repaved this trail to help solidify the footing.
There are various ways to access this run via the southern trailheads off Vista St and Fuller Ave. The Metro Bus 217 stops just south of the mapped start point on Hollywood Blvd and Fuller Ave or at Hollywood Blvd and Gardner St. Additionally, the Metro Red Line stops at Hollywood Blvd and Highland Ave, a few blocks east.
To start, head through the southern gate onto Runyon Canyon Rd
and head north for a hundred yards. Look to the left (west) for the start of the West Trail (Spine Trail)
. Head onto this trail as it bends back to the south and then north before beginning a steep climb up the ridgeline. Continue north for just over a mile and look for the North Connector
to the right (just north of a parking area/clearing) that heads toward a house. This links up with the Runyon Canyon Rd
From here, turn back to the south (right) on the Runyon Canyon Rd
and enjoy the gradual descent with views out toward the city. The recent trail work has added a few water fountains along this stretch so now is the time to fill up! Continue for less than a half mile and look for the East Trail (Steps Trail)
starting off to the left (east).
This trail, like the West Trail (Spine Trail)
, is unpaved but makes for a less steep descent along the eastern ridge of the park with a few constructed staircases.
One long switchback marks the final descent and the time to look out for the last link on the South Connector
that heads west back to the start point.
Flora & Fauna
Chaparral ecosystem dominated by shrubs such as sclerophyllous.
History & Background
Along this run, you'll also encounter some relics of Los Angeles history that include a few building ruins that were designed by Frank Lloyd Wright and the "Outpost" sign from 1927 that was constructed to attract prospective homeowners to the area.