Temescal Canyon Hike to Scull Rock and Farmers Market

temescal canyon trail, morning, hot, heat, ocean view, pacific ocean, hazy

A hot day for hiking, but I was not going to sit around home all day when it’s so nice out… unless I have a book to finish reading… and I do… But, besides, I wanted to see how bad the discomfort that hijacked my injured and yet recovering foot was. The day after last Friday’s 7.26 miler, it is an understatement to say that it was just unpleasant. So, I wanted to see if it was okay to handle a hike as short as just over 4 miles.

Temescal Canyon hike trailhead 02

Temescal Canyon Trail is one of the few trails that I used to enjoy hiking a lot when I just started hiking in Southern California over 4 years ago. It was when I just moved back to Los Angeles and joined a Meetup group called Best Hikes of SoCal, led by Ken Shoufer. The hike is really short, only 4.3 miles to the most popular landmark Scull Rock, with only 1,900 plus feet elevation gain (from the trailhead to Scull Rock). What makes it hard some times is heat.

And today was a hot day.

Temescal Canyon hike trailhead 01 The parking lot was scarcely occupied, showing it was definitely a hot day. Otherwise, it would’ve been packed.

When a friend of mine and I started the hike, the temperature was already hovering 81F degrees. It was not even 10 am. I immediately put my hiking hat on. I knew it was going to be a sweaty hot hike.

Temescal Canyon hike 02

I remembered the reason why I haven’t hiked here so long, which was the heat. Along with Parker Mesa Overlook hike, it used to be my favorite. But on this trail shades are rarely found. At least, Los Liones Trail to the overlook is not overly exposed like Temescal. Or at least to the first flat area where the bench is.

I welcomed a bit of breeze along the way, and it felt good on my overheated face. It was extremely hot and I saw an older man whose top was soaking wet in sweat hiding himself in the small shades of the shrubs. His entire upper body bent over and he was trying to catch a breath while cooling himself down in the shades. He must’ve underestimated the heat. I felt sorry for him.

temescal canyon trail, morning, hot, heat, ocean view, pacific ocean, hazy

I remembered seeing Long Beach from here, but today’s haziness made it impossible to recognize anything.

Of course, I saw Rancho Palos Verdes and Santa Catalina Island in the direction I was looking on. But that was about it.

temescal canyon trail, morning, hot, heat, ocean view, pacific ocean, hazy, downtown la, dtla,

I looked on in the direction of Downtown LA, but it was barely seen. The thick blanket of haze combined with smog must be lifted in order for us to see anything farther. Rain should come, I kept thinking to myself. Rain should come soon.

temescal canyon trail, morning, hot, heat, ocean view, pacific ocean, hazy

I climbed Scull Rock to have a better view of the ocean and beyond. As far as I could see, there was no cloud whatsoever, and the ocean was as blue as it could get, thanks to the clear blue sky.

farmers market

Once my friend and I were done with the 2 hour hike in the heat, we decided to cool ourselves down by checking out the farmers market by the park. It was a short walk from the park entrance on Sunset Blvd.

farmers market

If I didn’t go grocery shopping yesterday…

farmers market

I really liked how some farmers put some efforts into presenting their harvested crops. It is all about presentation!

farmers market

As I am getting more conscious of the impact that we’re creating toward the environment, of what I eat in preparation of my marathon training and of love for nature, I have been gradually turning my attention to sustainability and self-sufficiency. It is not so much that what I eat must be organic (and currently I don’t) or that I am going to grow everything that I would eat. We must constantly remind ourselves that this is the only planet that we know of as long as we live, and it is our responsibility not to damage it than we already have.

farmers market 05

The fact is that it is still expensive to eat organic day in and day out if you think about it, unless one grows plants him/herself. But then again, people spend money on what they appreciate most, and some really spend even a penny more toward organic produce and meat. So, it is all about where your priority lies.

farmers market

It is important to remind ourselves of where we are from, where the food we eat is from, and what kind of impact we generate toward something that we love so much – our planet.

As for my injured and yet recovering right foot, the discomfort has been under control. Knock knock. I may have rushed into testing it sooner than I hoped, and now I know that it may not be ready to handle any more than 7 miles of running. It appears that it needs more rest.

Have you hiked Temescal Canyon Trail? It has two different starting points. Which one do you like better and why? Have you ever hiked beyond Scull Rock before?

Thanks for reading.

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About H Peter Ji Photography

I am a photographer. My photos have been sold on EyeEm, Adobe Stock and ShutterStock and also featured on ViewBug and G+ Landscape Photography Community, and via Death Valley National Park Instagram and Facebook. My work is the natural byproduct of my love for outdoors - backpacking, hiking and camping in nature.

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