February 22, 2022

Take a Hike - Poppies are in Bloom at the Upper Las Virgenes Canyon Open Space Preserve

Virtually everything in this picture, from the poppies to the ridge-line, is pubic parkland of the Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy, California State Parks, or the National Park Service. The Upper Las Virgenes Open Space Preserve, formerly the Ahmanson Ranch, once slated for development, is now one of the most beautiful and popular parks in our area of Southern California.

Upper Las Virgenes Canyon Open Space Preserve Trail is a 9.9 mile heavily trafficked loop trail located near Calabasas, California that offers the chance to see wildlife and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

The first part of the hike takes you through gently rolling hills dotted with huge, spectacular oak trees. After a loop around Lasky Mesa, the hike heads northwest to Las Virgenes Canyon where a small creek nurtures a more densely covered area along the banks of the stream. This is a popular area for bikers so keep a head up for them.

Access to the park is at the Victory Trailhead at the western terminus of Victory Boulevard in West Hills, at the Upper Las Virgenes Canyon Trailhead at the northern end of Las Virgenes Canyon Road in Calabasas, and through trails headed east on the National Park Service land at Cheesebro Canyon. The trails are open to hikers, mountain bikers, and equestrians during daylight hours. No unauthorized motorized vehicles are allowed. There is a $3 parking fee at the Victory trailhead parking lot.

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