Into the Los Angeles Urban Wilderness

you don’t see this in the Lea Valley

Yesterday morning I headed up into Runyon Canyon along with a friend and one of his year-old twins strapped onto my back.

The canyon rises just two blocks away from the glitz of Hollywood Boulevard and is managed as ‘Urban Wilderness’ by the City of Los Angeles. The Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy describes it as, “a rare example of wild chaparral with its drought-resistant evergreen trees and shrubs only a stone’s throw from the hustle and bustle of the Hollywood community.”

an irresistible cliche

As the movie industry goes into decline being eclipsed daily by the Games world the Hollywood sign starts to look like even more of a relic of a by-gone era. In the week I’ve been here I’ve had more conversations about games than I have heard mentions of films.

The hazards of urban walking are somewhat different in LA to London. It’s amusing that this warning is near the top of the ridge of the canyon at the end of the most treacherous stretch of the trail.

There was a brown crust of smog sitting atop the city laid out flat like a printed sheet.

The urban fringe of L.A more the domain of dog walkers and personal trainers than psychogeographers.