Saturday's Upcoming Hike in the Santa Monica Mountains 1/6/18


 Our first adventure of the new year is a leadership hike with our first-ever round of WYLD participants who are now tenth graders, with long-time parent volunteer Lizz! If we have time we'll be checking out the Lake Shrine on Sunset and finding tacos on PCH! 

Where: Santa Ynez Canyon Trail, from the trail head at 17461 Vereda de la Montura rd in Pacific Palisades. 

When: Saturday, 9 am to 6 pm

What: We'll be taking the Santa Ynez Canyon trail to Sunset Rock for lunch, and on to Eagle Rock for desert. :)

Who: WYLD Junior Rangers in training. 

Focus: Map and navigation;  Flora, Fauna and Natural History; Leave No Trace principles. 

Want to do this hike on your own? Here is a link to Hikespeak that gives lots of details. Parking is free, and so is this hike.


Flora: Manzanita Shrub (Little Apple, in Spanish); Habitat: Chaparral, rocky slopes and ridges; Flowers November to February, but who knows what is going on with this crazy weather. Berries were/are used for food and tea. 

Two Types:

Eastwood Manzanita: Has hairs covering terminal parts (ends, for any kids reading) of its branches and leaves. 


Bigberry Manzanita:More tree-like than Eastwood, and bigger leaves and berries. 



Did you know that Los Angeles is only one of two major metropolises in the world that has lions within it's boarders? It's true. Mumbai in India in the only other one.  The most famous L.A. Puma is P-45, a large male that prefers to on the meat of pigmy goats of the rich and famous. Also true. Read up on S.M. Mountain pumas HERE! And here's an interesting, more lengthy article from the New Yorker on our very own P-45



First Peoples

Native American Indians have lived in the Santa Monica Mountains and surrounding area for over 10,000 years. Though of different languages and tribes, they lived a similar lifestyle based on the abundant food and materials provided by the environment. They fished in the ocean, hunted rabbits and deer in the canyons, and gathered acorns from the oak woodlands. Prosperous and industrious, the tribes who inhabited the mountains lived in the center of a network of commerce that extended up and down the coast, west to the Channel Islands, and inland to Arizona. Today we know the descendants of these people as the Chumash in the western and the Tongva in the eastern portions of the mountains. (Info from the Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy). 

Geology of the Santa Monica Mountains

  • The Santa Monica Mountains are a geological unit of the Transverse Mountain Ranges of Southern California.
  • The Santa Monica Mountains are a part of the only east-west belt of mountains in California and one of only two in North America so oriented.
  • The Santa Monica Range is a broad anticline that has been severely ruptured by faulting and intruded by sills and dikes.
  • The Santa Monica range is bisected by the flow of water that flows through Malibu Canyon.
  • Malibu Creek is thought to have flowed in its present course before the mountains existed.
  • The main fault of the Santa Monica Mountains is the Malibu Coast Faultt.
  • The Santa Monica Mountain Range is a result of the interactions between the Pacific Plate and the North American Plate.
  • The Pacific Plate's crust is oceanic and composed of basalt, which is denser than continental crust.
  • The Pacific Plate subducts under the North American Plate.
  • The Pacific Plate moves north, and the North American Plate moves south; a strike slip plate boundary.
  • The area where the two plates slip past each other is called the San Andreas Fault.
  • Geologic maps help us understand the geology of the mountains.
  • Geologic profiles provide a view at what might be beneath the ground.
  • Other geology resources.
  • (source




Thanks to all our friends who support WYLD, and please thank our local business supporters by checking out our Partners page and shopping locally.

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Happy Exploring. 

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  • Sonja Williams
    commented 2018-01-05 14:52:27 -0800

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