Hiking is also a way to immerse in nature while still in an urban city. L.A. is famous for traffic, rambunctious people and congested streets. Hiking to Cave of Munits or Escondido falls, is a way to drink in some fresh air, enjoy the mist of a waterfall and have no cellphone reception. People are different on a hike than in the city. Everyone you pass on a trail smiles and says “Hello”. Imagine if you were walking down Hollywood Blvd and everyone smiled and said “Hello”. I call this, the Hiking Effect. Maybe those of us who hike can bring the patience, consideration and kindness back to the boisterous streets.
It is healing to stand on a high peak in Griffith Park at night and see the city’s beautiful lights. A reset button gets pushed and the traffic on the way home is bearable. Now it’s not all Instagram worthy and easy. Hiking is work. Drew and I had to hike to film about 80% of our show. We hiked five miles into the ten miles to reach the Bridge to Nowhere. But it was a scorching summer day in August and we did not have enough water. I remember the final stretch before the car. Water seemed like a distant dream, my head was pounding in my ears and I kept looking at the ground at my feet willing them to move. The next time we went we were much more prepared.
I also learned that hiking is such an “L.A.” thing! There are several hiking groups with people of all ages, shapes, sizes and race. Drew and I have made friends with the good folks of L.A. Trail Hikers and all because of the simple concept of: You can use your body to walk and hike through this city and realign with your core and connect with others because everything else is behind you when you hike.
So, hiking. I’m a fan.