Natural Sepia Tinting

Just after sunrise on the trails at Griffith Park in Los Angeles, California, the sunlight added a sepia tint to this trail and a grove of eucalyptus trees.

Trail at Dawn

An empty trail just after sunrise.

Eucalyptus trees at dawn.

Eucalyptus trees at dawn.

(Posted for the latest Weekly Photo Challenge.)


Weekly Photo Challenge: Fleeting – But the City Remains

My favorite hike takes me through the chaparral-covered hills of Griffith Park but maintains a view (smog allowing) of downtown Los Angeles in the valley below. The weather and the seasons change but from this distance the city looks constant.


A fall afternoon.


Moonset at sunrise.


Early spring wildflowers.

(Posted as part of the Weekly Photo Challenge.)

Weekly Photo Challenge: The Sign Says… Hmm. About That Cyclist…

I am not sure how to interpret this advisory sign:


Beware of …?

Am I to understand that they lack cyclists there?

Or do they only care about one of the cyclists?

Should I watch out because one of the cyclists (and apparently all the hikers) are dangerous?

Or is the takeaway message if the hikers don’t get you, the cyclist will?

(Posted as part of the Weekly Photo Challenge.)

Howls at Sunrise

First light on a spring morning at Griffith Park.

Last spring I started going for hikes at sunrise, on a trail at Griffith Park that provides spectacular views of Los Angeles. As a hike progressed I could watch the city lights fade and see the rising sun gleam in distant high-rise windows. The cliffs and chaparral in the Park were shadows that slowly grew more distinct in that golden light that only comes at dawn. I knew when the sun was about to crest the horizon because that is when so many birds began to sing.

Trail at Dawn

An empty trail just after sunrise.

These hikes quickly became my favorite pastime. I couldn’t convince friends or family that they were worth the excessively early rising, so I went by myself. I feel safe hiking solo at Griffith Park because I stick to the popular trails and there are always people around.   As spring headed for summer, dawn came earlier, and I started my hikes earlier to accommodate. I assumed that the other early hikers were also there for the sunrise. But apparently they were just – early hikers, and they didn’t keep adjusting arrival time to match the sunrise. One morning  I discovered I was the only one around.  No cars.  No other hikers.  No dogwalkers. No park guys doing clean up.

I started out and the view was beautiful but I didn’t enjoy it.  I became preoccupied with the darkness behind me and the hills full of critters that might be watching me. The darkness thinned but still no one else was around. I decided to return to my car until other humans materialized. As I headed back, with relief I saw a jogger approaching.  We exchanged the usual good mornings and then as he passed me he asked with gusto, “Did you hear me howl?”

I had not.

“Aw-wuh!” He was disappointed but fortunately he kept going. A few minutes later, I could hear human howls echoing from deep back in the hills. Probably  he was harmless but I greeted the next hikers I passed with considerable enthusiasm.

I decided the moral of this story should be go later or bring the dog and that is what I have done since.