A guide to hiking in L.A.

Text that says "Go hiking in L.A."
(Photograph by Myung J. Chun / Los Angeles Times; typography by Mat Voyce / For The Times)

Why hike in Los Angeles? There are as many answers as there are Angelenos who lace up boots and hit trails. Southern California’s mountains and forests can serve as an outdoor gym, a sanctuary from the urban buzz, a spiritual space to heal and reflect, a place to pose and be seen (especially on Instagram), an entry to the natural world of tarantulas and newts, and a place to scale an unthinkably high peak. For the devout, it’s a lifestyle choice that in nonpandemic times brings us closer as a community.

Consider the stories below as an invitation to explore your wild backyard.

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Los Angeles is a great hiking city. Here’s what Angelenos said inspires them.

A sandwich improves every hike, and in Los Angeles, you can almost always find one not far from the other.

From Malibu to La Jolla, here are five Southern California trails that do something most hikes don’t — take you to the edge of the ocean.

This is the best way to complete the trail through the Santa Monica Mountains from Malibu to Pacific Palisades.

Influencers, celebrities, dog walkers. These are the types of people you might see on an L.A. hike.

From footwear to sun hats and socks to sun-proof shirts, these are some fresh styles for five hiking must-haves.

Let these Southern California hikes to inspire you to do more.

For six short years, visitors came to Echo Mountain to vacation like kings. Hike there and imagine its charm.

Longtime oppression and historical barriers have kept many people of color from feeling comfortable in the American outdoors.

Love your puffy? You can thank Eddie Bauer, who created a down jacket in 1936 after the cold almost killed him.

Here are some of our favorite creatures you may encounter on a local hike and what we think makes them special.