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Ferndell to the West Observatory Loop Trail to Griffith Observatory

EASY 272 reviews
#6 of 49 trails in

Ferndell to the West Observatory Loop Trail to Griffith Observatory is a 2.5 mile heavily trafficked loop trail located near Los Angeles, California that features beautiful wild flowers and is good for all skill levels. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

DISTANCE
2.5 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
613 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Loop

dogs on leash

kid friendly

hiking

nature trips

trail running

walking

bird watching

forest

partially paved

views

wild flowers

Ferndell (AKA Fern Dell) is a woodsy glen at the lower end of Western Canyon in Griffith Park. Your destination is the historic Griffith Observatory.

This is my go-to hike. Pretty great incline especially if you go clockwise on the trail. Good views of the city at the top and you can continue on to the observatory if you so choose. Great for dogs. Pretty busy always but not as crazy as Runyon or some of the Hollywood sign hikes. I always recommend this hike to people!

hiking
22 days ago

the little nature reserve part of ferndell trail is very shaded and cool, with many plants. then as you get onto the dirt trail, it’s unshaded so be aware. quick, easy, convenient hike.

hiking
28 days ago

I do this hike a few times a week in the early morning. It’s a perfect short and simple hike and gives a good workout with the steady incline up. The views at Griffith observatory are some of the best of the city. Also easy to run down! Perfect hike!

Great views of DTLA, Griffith Observatory, and Hollywood sign. But can be busy at times.

1 month ago

most of these trails are dirt roads and there's a lot of traffic but if you don't mind people you can get some pretty good views up by the observatory if the weather is clear overall I'd say this is an average hike

hiking
1 month ago

NOT A BEGINNER HIKING TRAIL

This trail was easy to do and easy to find with a beautiful payoff. I’ll be looking for another trail to try only because this trail was so crowded. Happy hiking!

hiking
1 month ago

Couldn't find parking along the street near Trails cafe, took the road up a bit and parked in lot near West Trailhead. Took the West Trail up to the Griffith Observatory and the West Observatory Trail back down to the parking area. Overall round trip about 2 miles, easy dirt path with a lot of erosion from recent rains. It was a great easy walk to avoid the chaos of trying to park at the observatory. Easy family hike for all ages.

Great, quick, easy loop. Went up the east observatory trail and came down the west obs trail. Beautiful grasses grown!

Did this hike with my 3.5 year old and had a great time! It was pretty sunny much of the way and a bit steep and slippery, but nothing we couldn’t handle. We didn’t do the last .5 mile stretch up to the observatory and back as two miles was plenty for my toddler (and for me considering how much I had to carry her). Overall, great hike and super easy to get to!

hiking
2 months ago

Don’t expect a hard workout, u go here for pictures. Still enjoyable if u go early.

hiking
2 months ago

heavy traffic. mosquitos in summer. fun for family.

hiking
3 months ago

Started at the base of Ferndell and went through the gardens (awesome). It took about a half hour to hike to the Observatory. Fantastic views, especially as you walk towards the back side of the Observatory. The hike was worth every step just for that. Hung out at the Observatory for a bit and people watched. Overall a great hike, moderate but the whole family could do it. Even though dogs are allowed, I wouldn't bring mine if you intend on hanging at the Observatory at all. NOTE: If you want to go into the Observatory its free, but its closed on Mondays!

4 months ago

Easy and very beautiful hike!

hiking
4 months ago

Started from the basic Griffith Park area and walked up through the less traveled side which gave amazing 360 views of the Hollywood Sign, Griffith Observatory, Hollywood, and DTLA. Even though the far right side was pretty much a vertical walk up it was worth it since no one was on it. Then I got to explore the observatory a bit when I reached the top and that was pretty awesome.

hiking
5 months ago

It's very shady and easy for all types of hikers, all ages. ❤

hiking
5 months ago

It was a really good hike, loved it. beautiful scenery

6 months ago

Amazing!!

hiking
6 months ago

I loved it! Very calm a relaxing!!

walking
7 months ago

The Ferndell loop was a great start to a great day of hiking! Got to see different wildlife and little streams. Great for kids, pets, etc. and you might even spot a celebrity along the way!

hiking
8 months ago

One of the first hikes I’ve done in L.A. Love the observatory so this easy hike is a given. At night you get the full E.T. View from near the top. At the bottom during the day you can stop at Trails cafe. Great spot to take visitors from out of town.

8 months ago

Easy hike with good incline. Love this hike up to the observatory for sunset

8 months ago

Came early in the middle of the week and was able to find parking pretty easily on Ferndell. Beginning of the hike was nicely shaded, but the majority of the trail up to Griffith Observatory was not. Pretty much a steady incline up to the top, but great views from the observatory and bathrooms at the top! Was a breeze to go back down the hill. Able to see the Hollywood sign and on nice days able to see downtown LA.

hiking
9 months ago

Beautiful views, and I saw at least 5 different bird species, but I don't appreciate how brief and crowded the hike is. Getting to the observatory at the top is a treat, though.

9 months ago

Was a great hike they have these little water creek spots that the kids (toddlers) will love turtles frogs and birds so they won’t get bord , comforts of pine smells :)

backpacking
9 months ago

Really cool hike! One moment it feels as if you're in the wilderness (ignoring the perfectly manicured trail) and then you look off in the distance for a spectacular view of downtown LA, or the Hollywood sign, or the Griffith observatory. Truly a unique experience we'll never forget.

easy enough to do for someone who may not be very fit!

hiking
11 months ago

The lower portion of the hike is on paved paths and the upper portion is on wide fire roads. There is a bit of climbing, but not too challenging due to how short the hike is. Cool views from the Observatory, as always.

walking
11 months ago

It’s steep. Scenic. Decent feel of a natural setting in LA, which is no small feat. The walk is easy but steep. Not technical by any means but my 7-year-old would struggle with it. My teens loved it. Great views of the LA skyline.

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