Hi friends! Sorry this post is so delayed. Last week after we did the hike, Shannon was working on a post about Mad Max: Fury Road for her good friends over at Head Over Feels, and tbh she only has so much writing in her per week. Anyone who tries to read her fanfiction can tell you about that. No we will not link to her fanfiction. So, without further ado, our trip to Bee Rock with guest hiker Alejandra and new guest hiker Lauren!
Things you should know about Lauren: she is also a party princess like Allison and Shannon! She specializes in face painting and balloon twisting. She was in acting class with Allison, Shannon, and Alejandra! She’s a kickass headshot photographer and she likes to dress up her cat.
We’re either going to need a selfie stick or fewer friends
So, Griffith Park is pretty fucking massive. Like, we all know this, but it starts to sink in when you’ve done a certain number of hikes there and realize you’ve still only ever seen a fraction of the park. This particular hike was on the east side of the park, which makes it pretty easy access. The trailhead we used is actually at the merry-go-round, which you’d probably recognize from all those times Meredith Grey remembered her mom and Weber fighting while she was riding it. Also from Buffy.
Anyway, the nice big parking lot with signs directing us there made it easy to find each other, and this was also possibly the first trailhead we’ve ever been to that actually received cell service, so we would’ve been okay either way. We don’t generally mind trailheads that are tougher to get to/find but that might be important to some people, we guess.
We, however, are adventurers of the highest fucking caliber
As you can see in the picture above, the trail is pretty wide and fairly smooth. It’s really easy to follow if you have even the slightest idea where you’re going. Instead of the slightest idea, however, we had the hikespeak page, which manages to be very helpful and also incredibly confusing all at once. For example, it said we were supposed to “drop across Spring Canyon after 2/3 of a mile over a small stream shaded by oaks and sycamores,” which makes it sound like a thing we’re supposed to DO, right? Like we’re supposed to find a stream and follow the path that way? But no, we were just supposed to stay on the same wide trail [not to mention it’s not really a stream anymore thanks to the drought which we are contractually obligated to mention in every post], which we only discovered after we doubled back twice thinking we had missed something.
This is the closest thing we had to a pic of us being lost we guess
In any case, most of the trail up had pretty good views, mostly of Glendale over to the east. And yes, maybe Glendale is not the most picturesque vista in the Los Angeles area, but it could really really be worse.
THIS is the most picturesque vista in Los Angeles AMIRITE
We know you’re all dying to hear about the topics of conversation, so here they were in a nutshell: Mad Max: Fury Road and the awesomeness therein, Game of Thrones and the lack of awesomeness in the most recent episode. Also literally everyone’s respective love lives, which are all in very different stages, including Shannon’s amazing story of totally behaving like a grown-up with her boyfriend after she got advice from Alejandra last week.
On the way up, there’s a view of Bee Rock from below.
Is it because it looks like a beehive? Did someone get killed by bees there? NO ONE KNOWS
And the trail lived up to its name in that we saw so many fucking bees. We stick steadfastly to our theory that this whole “the bees are dying” thing is a PR campaign perpetrated by Big Bee. For real, did you hear that Morgan Freeman turned his property in Mississippi into a bee farm? That is a TRUE FACT. We’re all falling for it. #beetruth
At one point we had to make a choice. We could take a trail that was shorter but much steeper up to Bee Rock, or we could take the Bill Eckert Trail and climb more slowly. Guess whether we were lazy. You get three and the first two don’t count. [Confession: we don’t understand that phrase.]
Spoiler alert: lazy
The trail led back up to a paved road. We saw an overlook to our left that looked like it was…y’know, a thing. And it turned out it led to actual Bee Rock, which sort of descended from that overlook. And then we saw something unusual.
See, we’ve mentioned before [we think? we’re too lazy to check for sure lol what] that one of the earmarks of hiking in Los Angeles is that it’s pretty much on you not to die. There are very few, if any, signs to indicate where you are or where you should be going, and there are not a lot of fences or boundaries either. But apparently Bee Rock is different, and we don’t know if it’s because someone like tumbled to their death or what [if that’s true omg we’re so sorry we didn’t mean to be insensitive lol what] but there was…a fence.
Is the barbed wire not a bit overkill?
Anyway, this insanely secure little path led out to the rock, which had a view of Glendale and the San Gabriel Mountains that was not all that different from what we’d been seeing on our way up the trail, but this time it was obstructed by chain link, so that was…not ideal.
This was BETWEEN the links, because we will not be bested by a fence
There were some rock formations up there but there wasn’t all that much room to climb in any kind of fun way. The corridor left by the fence was pretty narrow. There was plenty of graffiti, though, and that is how we found Lauren’s hiking nickname, because everyone needs one now: Muppet.
Actually we’re pretty sure this had something to do with drug dealers
And because it was Bee Rock, Allison and Alejandra decided to be bees.
Nobody tell them
And because we were…up high? Shannon and Lauren decided to be Jack and Rose…? It seemed like a good idea at the time anyway.
Nobody tell them
As you may be able to see from the pictures, there was a gap in the fence big enough to get through so we could sit on the rocks beyond and have an unobstructed view. We refrained from doing so because there were already people out there and because we are not insane and do not have a death wish. It was a REALLY steep drop, you guys.
The retreat of the wise
So instead we just plodded back down the trail the way we came. We had another stop to make, though, because on the way back we knew we could go through the Old Zoo. The current Los Angeles Zoo is only a few miles away, and when it opened in the ’60s they didn’t do anything with the old one. They just left it up and turned it into a picnic area.
In case you like your picnics with a side of remnants of animal cruelty
Mostly there’s just a few walls and a couple structures left, and one row of cages, at least from what we saw. There was some filming going on nearby and it was toward the end of the hike and we were getting hungry, so we didn’t explore as thoroughly as we maybe could have. We did go inside one of the cages though, and they are fucking small. They date back to the 1930s when people apparently didn’t give a shit about zoo animals.
Thank you for coming to our photographic reenactment of The Oppression of Zoo Animals. The zoo animals were played by Allison and Lauren. Mankind was played by Shannon. Direction and photography by Alejandra
We knew there was a trail back to where we started because we had seen where it split off from the Bee Rock Trail at the beginning of the hike. We got kind of thrown off by whatever was filming, though — for real, there was like a weird photo backdrop? And someone was in a bear costume? And there was an empty moose costume just like sitting nearby. It seemed like a pretty significant production in terms of how much personnel and equipment was involved but they still let us just walk on through, and we didn’t really want to linger [except maybe a couple of us were considering trying to raid craft services lol what]. So Allison asked how to get back to the merry-go-round, and to be fair he probably gave us the best answer he knew, which took us through some more traditional park areas and past a playground, rather than through the trail we had kind of meant to take. We had to walk through a parking lot or two but we did get to pass the merry-go-round. It was closed though. Bummer.
Just because it’s early on a weekday and we’re all in our twenties doesn’t mEAN THOSE HORSIES SHOULD BE LOCKED UP
Mmm, you can almost hear Ellis and Richard fighting over their adulterous baby
From there we cruised right on back up to the parking lot! Slowly. It was a long hike and we were tired. Also hungry, so we went to Fred 62 in Los Feliz for lunch.
Wildlife? Thin on the ground. A couple of lizards, more bees than we would have liked #beetruth
Conclusion? The hike is easy to find and easy to get to. It’s a good length and a nice slow incline, with decent views. Really there’s nothing staggering about it though. We didn’t run into a lot of other people but it was kind of annoying when we ran into filming a couple of times. It’s worth keeping in mind for the convenience factor, we suppose — same as some of the other Griffith or Franklin hikes we’ve done.
And then, as we know, Shannon was too busy asking for a moment to talk about our lord and savior Imperator Furiosa to write this post. So guess what you guys get? A little bonus!
Before we started this blog, Allison and Shannon used to rollerblade together every Friday on the Santa Monica bike path. Trips out of town and weather have kept us from the tradition for several weeks, but two days after our Bee Rock hike we went again! And a good thing too, because we both had brand new knee socks we’d been dying to wear.
Anyway there’s not a lot to tell. We start at the Santa Monica Pier and head either north or south until it basically becomes impossible to keep going, then turn back. Whichever way you go it’s about a 6-mile round trip usually. We went south this time because it had been a while since we did that.
Shannon needs to talk to Allison about taking creepy pictures of her ass without permission lol what
The southbound path takes you through Venice Beach down to Manhattan Beach. Basically lots of stoners, skaters, homeless people, tourists, and total asshole bikers. Also people that are on weird devices that do NOT qualify as bikes. We’re talking those weird close-to-the-ground tricycles, and also some things that are basically ellipticals but on wheels. We didn’t make it as far as usual this day because unfortunately we came across a stretch of path that was entirely covered in sand like an inch thick.
We offer proof so you don’t think we’re just lazy. We’re lazy but not JUST lazy
So we took a selfie and turned back.
Living close to the ocean is fine we guess
So we headed back up to the pier, regretting our lack of giant boom box the whole way. And as we made our way back up to the pier we kind of registered something we’d never really noticed before, in all the times we’ve done this route: there’s a seating area in the shape of a boat.
And you might ask “princesses, what is that behind the boat? What is chasing you?”
Well, it’s a dragon head.
Don’t fucking ask us to explain Santa Monica to you
In any case, after this we completed the remainder of our #ladyfriendFriday tradition, which is to get frozen yogurt from the Pinkberry on the 3rd Street Promenade and continue in our quest to make the staff there think that we are the world’s most adorable lesbian couple.
Thanks for waiting for the new post and for reading! We’ll be back in the next couple of days with a new post; tomorrow we’re planning on taking some EXTRA special guests on a hike with us so be sure not to miss it! And if you have any suggestions for us about hikes to try, please leave them in the comments!
Until next time,