Gunshots and garbage, landfills, what’s not to like on this hike?
Those of you with fond memories of the views of the landfills from our Puente Hills hikes should be all over this one, as you can get your passport stamped at the Sunshine Landfill this Saturday. The 10-year-old Weldon Canyon was deeded to the government in exchange for allowing nearby Sunshine to expand, and it’s now part of the Santa Monica Nature Conservancy.
Like with Puente, this is a lucky deal for hikers, as the pretty canyon connects to many trails and has expansive views of the San Fernando and Santa Clarita Valleys. Plus, there’s a cool bird observation deck along the way and the occasional dulcet sounds of the Oak Tree Gun Club range in the background.
While there’s minimal gain on this, it’s almost entirely at the start (= don’t miss the warm up), after which the grade evens out a bit. To make up for the lack of elevation, we’ll keep up a good pace on the fire road – no strolling. We’ll stop for a brief rest at the observation deck to seek out any circling hawks before continuing along a fire road for another mile to a junction. The left option leads toward a previous destination, Mission Point and O’Melveny Park, but we’ll take the right down to a picture-perfect picnic spot (above) for our break, then descend down through East Canyon.
This involves a short car shuttle as the trailhead @ Weldon Motorway is about two miles away from the trail end at East Canyon, and there’s not a safe/easy walking route between them.
Level: ModerateGain: ~ 800 ft.Distance: ~ 9 milesTime: ~ 4 hoursType: Single track dirt and fire road, loop with car shuttleDogs: Permitted on leashWater: Not available at trailheadRestrooms: Available at the trail end at East Canyon (approx. 24255 The Old Road), near where we’ll be parking for the car shuttle. These are not just off the road. . . you’ll need to arrive a few minutes early to walk in to the trailhead and then back out to the road to be ready to leave by 7:45 am.Parking: Free off-street parkingBring: 2-3 liters of water, hat, sunscreen, a jacket (could be windy/drizzly), snacks to share
To the car shuttle location (trail end):Approximate address for GPS is: 23857 The Old Road, Newhall, CA 91321.This is the Church of the Nazarene and we’ll be parking on the side of the road just beyond the church.Exit the I-5 at Calgrove and turn left (if coming from the south) or right (if coming from the north) and turn left(south) on the Old Road. Pass the post office on your right and park off the road anywhere beyond the church,taking care to pull completely off the road. We’ll meet there and divide up for the drive to the trailhead, promptly at 7:45 am.
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