Before leaving for a night hike, call ahead to confirm details and to make reservations. Remember to take warm clothing, a flashlight and something to drink.
These organizations are among those offering twilight and night hikes in and around the Valley:
Sierra Club, 3550 W. 6th St., Los Angeles 90020, (213) 387-4287. Membership in the Sierra Club costs $33 a year. Some hikes are open to the public at no charge, and non-members may purchase an extensive hiking schedule at the Sierra Club office for $3.50, or by mail for $4.50. Sierra Club-sponsored night hikes in Griffith Park take place every Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, and certain Fridays, beginning at 7 p.m. Meet at the upper merry-go-round parking lot.
Twilight Hikes in Caballero Canyon meet at the south end of Reseda Boulevard in Tarzana on Fridays in the summer at 7 p.m. The 2 1/2-hour hikes go to Mulholland Drive for dazzling views. Hikers are split into three levels according to ability. An easy three-hour "Evening Ramble" from Serrania City Park into new park property along Mulholland Crest begins at 5 p.m. on Sunday, July 26. From the Ventura Freeway, go south on the De Soto-Serrania exit three-quarters of a mile to the park. Bring picnic dinner and water. Six miles will be covered, and no reservations are required.
National Park Service, 22900 Ventura Blvd., Suite 140, Woodland Hills 91364, (818) 888-3770. Friday, July 3, at 7 p.m., a ranger will lead a two-hour walk through lower Sycamore Canyon to photograph that part of Point Mugu State Park. On Saturday, July 4, at 8 p.m. at Franklin Canyon Ranch, a naturalist will lead a moderate hike and a discussion of "independence." Thursday, July 9, at 8:30 p.m., a Full-Moon Hike through lower Sycamore Canyon will take two hours. Friday, July 10, at 6:30 p.m., two separate Santa Monica Mountain hikes will take place at Rocky Oaks and Castro Crest, and a Sunset Saunter will begin at 7 p.m. through Franklin Canyon Ranch. Request National Park Service's free brochure for many more hikes.
Cold Creek Docents, 1970 McKain, Calabasas 91302, (818) 888-9363. On Friday, July 10, at 7:30 p.m., a moderately vigorous two-hour Full-Moon Hike to Calabasas Peak will take place. Meet at the lower Stunt High Trail head, which is one mile south of Mulholland Highway on Stunt Road. From the peak, hikers will see views of the San Fernando Valley. Reservations are suggested. There is no fee, but donations are accepted.
William O. Douglas Outdoor Classroom, P.O. Box 2488, Beverly Hills 90213, (213) 858-3834. This organization sponsors "Moonlight Walks" from the bottom of Franklin Canyon to the ridge for panoramic views of Los Angeles on Saturday at 8 p.m., July 11 and Aug. 8. Hikes last two hours.
Conejo Recreation and Park District, 401 W. Hillcrest Drive, Thousand Oaks 91360, (805) 499-4355. Wildwood Night Awareness Hikes take place the second Saturday of the month, and begin at the park gate at the west end of Avenida de los Arboles and Big Sky Drive in Thousand Oaks. On July 11 and Aug. 8, the 1 1/2-hour naturalist-led leisurely family hikes begin at 8 p.m.; at other times of the year, they begin earlier. The cost is $1 a person, and registration beforehand is suggested. Beginning in the fall, monthly hikes, which will meet at the trail head in Triumfo Park in Westlake, are planned. These will be 3/4-mile hikes up to a view. Call later in the summer for a definite schedule. Campfire programs take place in Wildwood Park the last Saturday of the month from 7 to 9:30 p.m., including July 25 and Aug. 22. These include a sunset hike into the park, entertainment by folk artists and marshmallow roasting. Meet at the park gate at Avenida de los Arboles and Big Sky Drive. The cost is $2, and, since these programs are popular, registration beforehand is preferred.
Wilderness Institute, 22900 Ventura Blvd., Suite L-10, Woodland Hills 91364 (818) 887-7831. "Sunsets and Seashores Hikes" are scheduled for 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. on Wednesday, July 15, at Leo Carrillo State Beach, and on Tuesday, Aug. 4, at Charlee Park Overlook. The cost for each naturalist-interpreted hike is $10 for adults, $8 for ages 12 and under. Mostly families turn out for these events. Registration beforehand is required. A Full-Moon Hike is being planned for Dec. 25. Call for a catalogue.