Southern California's Dog-Friendly Hikes

There are dozens of places to hike in Southern California, from the Hollywood Hills to the low deserts and back to the Santa Monica mountains. But if your dog likes to ruff it with you, it may be difficult to find trails that welcome your four-legged friend. Thankfully, this list includes dog-friendly hikes that range from easy one-hour walks to more rigorous terrain. Some require your dog to be leashed, but there are plenty of off-leash hikes as well. Wherever you are, remember to follow the dog guidelines and most importantly, enjoy the great outdoors with your best friend.

Updated: June 07, 2010

Where to Hit the Trails in LA & Beyond

Will Rogers State Historic Pk

1501 Will Rogers State Park Rd, Pacific Plsds, CA 90272

An easy two-mile round trip, you and your leashed companion will climb about 300 feet to reach Inspiration Point. In addition to dogs, you can also see horse and rider enjoying the beautiful beach views. If you're more adventurous, you can venture further into the Santa Monica mountains.

Griffith Park

4730 Crystal Springs Dr, Los Angeles, CA 90027

There is an off-leash area (look for signs), but dogs must remain on leash on hiking trails. Mount Hollywood's trail is the most popular one, which is a three-mile loop with 500 feet of elevation. Look out for horses on this hike, too!

Runyon Canyon Park

2001 N Fuller Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90046

Popular with canines and celebrities alike, Runyon offers an urban hike in Hollywood for off-leash dogs and their owners. Entrances are on Fuller Avenue, Vista Street and Mulholland Drive. Trails range from easy half-mile strolls to more strenuous loops that go more than three miles. On clear days there are great views of the city.

Eaton Canyon Nature Center

1750 N Altadena Dr, Pasadena, CA 91107

This easy hike in the San Gabriel Mountain foothills is perfect for the whole family--dogs included. The more popular trail leads 1.5 miles from Eaton Canyon Nature Center to a 40-foot waterfall. Energetic hikers and dogs can turn onto the Mt. Wilson Toll Road to Henninger Flats, adding 1,300 feet in elevation gain.

Angeles National Forest

701 N Santa Anita Ave, Arcadia, CA 91006

The Angeles National Forest provides many dog-friendly trails, but the Station Fire closed much of the forest that was accessible from Angeles Crest Highway. Contact the Angeles Forest Rangers at (626) 574-5200 for more information on currently open trails.