The “BEAST” Hike:

Well,as I promised I finally did “THE BEAST”!

It starts out at the same place as “A small hike to a small waterfall”, which is at the end of Newhall Ave. east side of the 14 Fwy. The trail starts to the right or south for those of you who rely on proper directions. Actually the trail is more like a dirt road which made me feel better about any possible rattlesnake encounters that might occur along the way since it is summer time! The incline is immediate as you start and continues steadily throughout the whole hike,(except on your way back of course).

Before you start take a look up into the mountains, past all the electrical towers, way past, that is where this trail takes you.

Actually I was enjoying the first hour of the hike, I have driven by these mountains so many times and never thought of hiking behind the familiar landscape adjacent to the 14 Fwy. But after an hour or so the dirt road offered not much in the way of scenery. Oh there was an awful lot of coyote dung, and an abundance of lizards, but even these things bored me after a while! Thank goodness for the Horny Toad I found, and the mountain biker that pedaled rapidly but hardly moved up the steep incline! I now had a renewed urge to finish this long dirt road. I’m glad I did because shortly after said Horny Toad the tall brush along the road opened up and I could see the Los Pinetos Saddle trail that leaves from Placerita Canyon. WOW! What a view! I now can see how high up I had hiked! I continued along and realized that if I kept going I could make my way over the ridge into the mountain range East of Sylmar. Not today my friend I had enough of this long , seemingly never ending dirt road, time to turn back. Along the walk back down the road I was attacked by a large bee a couple of times that was both persistent and relentless.

That bee chased me along ways, both times!   I ran so fast I was sure I’d lost him but to my surprise it would still be right behind me! So the hike back was considerably shorter due to the running to escape the “Killer Bee”!!

All in all the hike was about 10 miles long, and took about 4 hours, but I was in no rush,(except for the Bee incidents). It certainly was not the most scenic hike I’ve been on but I am still amazed at how high I was up there every time I look over while driving along the 14. I really am glad I tackled “THE BEAST” and won!!