Route: Park to Playa Trail (CA)

Submitted by Christophe Stahl on Sun, 11/15/2020 - 03:34pm
Location
California, US
Distance
22.6 mi
Vertical Gain
1,529 ft
Description

The Park to Playa Trail in the Los Angeles area was finally completed in October 2020 with the addition of the pedestrian bridge that connects the Kenneth Hahn Park and the Baldwin Hills. 

Half of it is going through single lane trails and a bit of service roads in the 2 parks, and the other half is a section of a bike path next to the Ballona Creek. It is a very easy route, pretty well marked, with some nice views of the city and the ocean. Bathrooms and water points on the way.

The route information submitted is for the out and back.

Below is the link to the page of the Los Angeles County Department of Parks and Recreation with a description and a map:

https://trails.lacounty.gov/Trail/237/park-to-playa-trail

Note #1: the description mentions a length of 13 miles, however 3 different routing systems indicate a length around 11 miles (Strava, Garmin and AllTrails.com).

Note #2: just below Baldwin Hills make sure to follow the trail next to Hetzer Rd and go into the Culver City Park on the other side of the road if going towards the Ocean since there are many intersections and the signs can be confusing. Inside the Culver City Park take the wood ramp on the opposite side of the stairs.

Images

Comments

Did this over the weekend. Thanks for setting up the FKT Chris! A few other routing notes that I would have found helpful:

  1. About 1.5 miles in when you end up in a parking lot at a major intersection you want to cross the big intersection basically going diagonal to where you are into Kenneth Hahn park. The formal crosswalks take forever; you are better off going right then left as it cuts down on one street you have to cross.
  2. Just past the bathrooms where you make a left in the parking lot of Kenneth Hahn, stay left on the sidewalk that's headed downhill, the trail to the right brings you around the upper part of the park whereas you want to target the lower picnic area.
  3. after crossing through the main Kenneth Hahn picnic area you end up in a parking lot and you'll see a blue arrow pointing down a grass hill. Follow the blue arrows till you hit the road and hang a right. There is no real "trail" for this short section
  4. The formal turnaround for the trail is at the last bridge crossing over towards the left. I went all the way to the ocean where the trail turns to rock, but that is not technically part of the trail.

Thanks Cameron for adding notes and congrats on beating my time! Good points because Kenneth Hahn and Culver City park are a bit of a maze and like you said the turnaround is easy to miss if you are tempted to look at the waves. I put less details on this route than I usually do since there was some info available from the County already.

Nice work, guys. Going to give this a shot soon. Does it matter which end of the trail I start on?

Looks like you blew it out of the water! I don't think the direction of the run really matters on this segment, but Chris was the one that set it up so I'll defer to him. You should make an out and back strava segment with your route. I'm curious how others will fare even if they don't post to FKT. 

Hey Eric and Cameron. Sorry for the delay with my answer, the FKT site does not send notifications yet, or maybe I didn't see it. Anyway, for an out and back I think the general rule is that you can start at any end since the total distance and vert will be the same.

Good job guys! I was happy to see this nice piece of trail open in the middle of LA!!!