It was the first of the year and after a very eventful New Years Eve I was once again aching to get somewhere new. This time I stayed local. Only about 15 minutes from my apartment is Franklin Canyon Park. It consists of a reserve, a few trails, and is the location to many films and tv shows, including Combat.
My roommate and I arrived late in the afternoon and as soon as we arrived I realized that I had been there before. We had worked on a Hallmark movie, Backwoods, with Haylie Duff and Ryan Merriman, filming up and down the main road. However, since I was working in base camp that production I didn’t really get to experience the park at all.
We started our journey on the road and walked down and up the small hill. We came to a cute trail around what I will call the duck pond. There were all different kinds of ducks including Mallards, Mandarin Ducks, and Wood Ducks. They were very friendly and would come right up to you. It was quite obvious that no one was following the “Do not feed the wildlife.” signs posted.
We continued to the first reserve and it was beautiful. The mountains and pine trees shut out all the city noise that you would normally expect. And the reeds and ducks bring nature right to the center of Los Angeles. It’s just a little lake in the middle of the city that you would never expect to be there. You feel as though you could be in the mountains in the middle of the wilderness.
We continued our journey down the road, past a small house, a few other trails that I will need to go back and explore and to the gated off end reserve. I’m sure at one point the reserve must have been open to visitors, but it no longer is. We turned around and headed back up the road we came down, remembering how we flipped the car in Backwoods right on that very street. We turned up a side trail that brought us back to the beginning of the park.
A few things to know if you plan on going are that there are several parking lots inside the park, including one at the entrance and one at the very end. The trails are relatively easy so it is a good place to go for a short hike for both young and old. Also, be aware that there are several stop sign cameras inside the park. Make sure you come to a complete stop or you will get a ticket in the mail. Other than that, parking is free. So enjoy!