Week 300: Glenoaks Canyon, Glendale

January 07, 2024

 AllTrails Glenoaks Canyon, Sleepy Hollow Drive, and Valle Vista Motorway, 2.38 miles.

Barbara and I only number the hikes we do for the first time and because today marked our 300th different hike, today we chose something that combined our love for residential urban hiking, mountain nature trails, and LA history. The charming residential neighborhood of Glenoaks, born 100 years ago in what used to be Scholl Canyon in the Verdugos north of Glendale, was developed during the 1920s, the "most transformative era" in Los Angeles history. Between 1920 and 1930, LA population doubled in size from 576K to 1.2M due to the growth of the oil, manufacturing, and agricultural industries, the growth of Hollywood, and, of course, the attraction of our weather. With growth and abundance came the car culture and suburban sprawl, and with DTLA only 6 miles south, Glendale became a desirable commuter town. In 1920, a syndicate of LA men bought and subdivided Scholl Canyon into 1/2 and 1 acre lots, renamed Scholl "Glenoaks Canyon" and presented the Glenoaks Park development, "a hill bordered gem," at a barbecue in 1923. Our hike today encircled the "gem" beginning at street level from Glenoaks Park on Glenoaks Blvd. A left on Sleepy Hollow Drive took us up into the residential section where we passed the "castle" that served as our landmark.  Sleepy Hollow led to a trail south to the Valle Vista Motorway trail—and the most dazzling sights of the morning: a clear view across the city of Eagle Rock to DTLA, 6 miles south; and a glimpse of the Griffith Observatory sitting on top of the Santa Monicas in Griffith Park to the west. The motorway trail twisted around the lip of Glenoaks Canyon with a view down into the small community and the "castle." The Valle Vista trail ended at Sleepy Hollow Place, then a short sidewalk hop took us to the next trail, a pretty NW path with oaks and sycamores, a few friendly neighborhood dogs walking their owners, and cool views of the towers on Flint Peak and the San Gabriels beyond. Trail #2 ended at Glenoaks Blvd for the return to our starting point. Always admiring houses we wouldn't mind owning, we took time to stop for a photo of the Crowell-Saylor house, a French Revival built in 1928 and listed on the Glendale Historic Registry. Back at the car, we headed out for a mocha stop to plan our next hike. #301!!!









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