FKT: Aaron Anderstrom - Topanga State Park Loop (CA) - 2021-03-15

Route variation
Standard route
Gender category
Start date
Finish date
Total time
2h 10m 37s
GPS track(s)

Topanga FKT: 3/15/2021 0801 Tippet Ranch Parking area


Weather: Temperature 46-51 F, 65-90%chance of rain, overcast, showers, moody.



Topanga/Santa Ynez- Doubletrack out of the state park to get to Santa Ynez. Santa Ynez is a fun pretty flowy downhill. Steep at the upper section with a fair amount of stairs. Very cool rock ridge section down to a creek bottom and crossing then out to a neighborhood called The Summit to connect to the next trails.

Trailer Canyon Fire Road- Nice quiet section of fire road. Saw hundreds of quail and loads of rabbits and other assorted birds. Thankfully no mountain lions. Did catch a break in the rain dropping far enough under the clouds at the lowest point of the run. Became socked back in as the rain quickly resumed heading up to the higher sections of this course. Surface all the way up was pretty reasonable given all the rain, a couple of slick sections but easily avoided.

Temescal Ridge/Backbone Trails- Pretty much same as the trail to get up here, wide fire roads, some slick spots. Passed by Cathedral Rocks and Hub junction before tipping fairly drastically downhill to reach the outer portion of the course. Fun little segment of single track before heading up into the bushwack.

Bushwack- Just what it says it is. Pretty overgrown all the way. The low foliage held a lot of moisture, relatively unrelenting brush. Steepest section on the route but not too crazy since it is pretty short.  

Temescal Canyon Fire Road- More decent fire road. Bit slicker on this side, not sure if that was the cumulative rain throughout the night/morning or something to do with the aspect.

Garapito Trail- Fun flowy single track down into a creek bottom with views of some neat conglomerate rock. Felt like a long climb out from the bottom of this back to the backbone trail. 

Backbone- Once again more fire road passes by Eagle Rock. Short segment to connect to the final single track segment.

Munsch Trail- more like Mush trail. Last two miles had pretty ghastly traction. The trail was entirely submerged in some spots and where it wasn’t submerged it had a rivulet flowing on one side or down the middle. Slick surface when wet. Pretty meadows through the Munsch camp area. Would definitely move way faster dry… felt like Newman in Jurassic Park. 



This was a very fun course, I feel like you get to see a lot of what the Santa Monica foothills have to offer. Decent gain but nothing too insane, 3,317ft on my watch at the end. Definitely could be room for improvement for me on this course. Lost some time on two of the climbs where I could have pushed a little harder if the fitness was there. Also I could have picked a better weather day but I don’t get to run in the rain much anymore living in SLC, so I took a small loss there. Honestly though the rain was only really noticeable in small patches except miles ~14-16 as stated earlier. The inclement weather also kept the trail traffic down to 3 other people the whole run. There is definitely still room for improvement on this FKT. I strongly believe this course could go sub 2hr in someone with the right fitness and conditions. Overall I am pleased with how this all went. It has been a long time since a harder effort like this. I had some nerves night before and morning of but was able to get past those and have an awesome time out on the trails!