The Deukmeijian Wildnerness Park is a beautifully maintained park managed by the City of Glendale. It sits at the base of the Foothills and overlooks the foothill cities of La Crescenta, Tujunga, and Glendale, which glimpses as far as L.A. With miles of trails of varying lengths and difficulty from .5 miles to 15+ miles, there is a little something for everyone. For the very fit and adventurous, one can climb from here to the top of Mt. Lukens, the heighest point in Los Angeles.
Official Website: Deukmejian Wilderness Park
Location: 3429 Markridge Rd. La Crescenta, CA 91214
Kid Friendly? Yes – there are small grassy picnic areas and shorter-length trails for the kiddos
Fido Friendly? Yes – dogs allowed on leash; bags provided at the trailhead by the barn.
Cost: Free; ample parking
Attire: Hiking: sturdy hiking boots (the trails are dirt paths with small and large loose rocks), long pants to avoid scrub scratches, nettle stings and poison oak, a hat and sunscreen; Picnicking: weather appropriate street attire and sturdy shoes.
The Main Event: Deukmejian Park is a popular park among locals for hiking. Hiking is really the main event here, although there are some shorter walking trails, a few grassy picnic areas, and one large grassy space suitable for playing catch or lounging and taking in the views. A hundred yards or so up the hill, the Vineyard Trail winds you down to the stream below. One can also find a shaded stream a further distance (about 3/4 miles in) on the Rim of the Valley trail (more challenging). Mom-approved bathrooms, water fountains, courtesy doggy water dish, and a nice selection of sponsored naturalist-type events (native plant courses, clean-up days, etc.) all add to the appeal of the park. Lastly, the park offers some local history with the old stone barn. Click here to learn about the Mesnager Barn story or visit the official website at the top of this page.
Easter Eggs (as the kids say, these are the ‘little surprises’ of the day): A deer, A tiny frog I helped off the concrete, and animal scat (okay, not so fun for moms, but WAY cool for kids…it is loaded with neat stuff to see >.<!).