Sightseeing 13.1 in Los Angeles

19 02 2010

For work and for pleasure, I travel a fair bit, averaging 40,000-50,000 miles/year. I’m fairly aggressive in making sure that I get quality touristing in even on work trips, but since I’ve become a runner I’ve enjoyed travel in a different way, due to the sightseeing orientation run. Soon after arrival, I will try to get in a run to understand the lay of the land, which helps immensely to focus subsequent travels (especially given the significant time limitations involved with work travel). Running also allows me to see areas that I otherwise likely wouldn’t visit for time reasons.

I had a great orientation run in Los Angeles on Friday. Sunset Strip, then Beverly Hills, up Franklin Canyon through the Santa Monica Mountains Recreation area, along Mulholland Drive near the top of the mountain, then back down through the edge of Hollywood and back to WeHo. 13.1 exhilarating miles, with steep hills on the ways up and down. I have never before been so satisfied with a 14 minute/mile pace, and never before had so effortless a sub-7 pace. With spectacular views along much of the way, I covered far more territory than if I had hiked, and traveled through areas I never would have visited by car.

The outrageous palm trees that mark the wealth of Beverly Hills:

Franklin Canyon:

Yes, an isolated area in the middle of the second largest city in the US. The preserved spaces in California always tempt.

Along Mulholland Drive:

After taking the above photo I nearly stepped on a rattlesnake (6 inches from my shoe – yikes!). No, I hadn’t considered that hazard – not a problem in my typical running venues.

More Mulholland Drive, looking north to the mountains (for some reason I never took a southern view back to central LA):

Mulholland Drive was particularly peaceful due to a road collapse, which kept cars mercifully away.

I also had some peaceful running in San Diego along Mission Beach earlier in the week:




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