By Talya Adams
Two weekends ago, I found myself feeling a little burnt out from the Los Angeles hustle. The year is quickly winding down, and with the holidays fast approaching, I knew I needed to let off some steam. As usual, I didn’t have a full day to take a ride, so I looked for a relatively quick route – something less than four hours round trip, to destress and refocus. I ended up heading out to the mountains in Simi Valley.
I chose this location because I’ve never really headed out toward Simi Valley for pleasure. I wanted to get a lay of the land and possibly fit in a hike. A quick Google search told me this trip would provide the key things I was looking for in a ride for the day. I left around 2 p.m. because I knew traffic’s always pretty light on Saturdays heading north, and an open road was on my list of preferences. Also, I knew the time change would have the sun setting earlier in the day, and I wanted to enjoy some daylight. My journey started from mid-city Los Angeles, so I took US-101 N, to CA-170 N, and then CA- 118 W, which took me to my end destination at Rocky Peak Park in Simi Valley.
The ride up there was smooth sailing as the traffic was light and the weather was perfect.
I know some riders don’t enjoy the freeway, but this route offered nice views of the valley and mountains off in the distance. I got to Rocky Peak Park in under an hour, and I had enough time to explore the park while it was still daylight hours. My plan was to get there before sunset to enjoy the beautiful views, quiet surroundings, and the fresh air. The air being fresh was surprising given the recent fires, but it was crisp and clear.
The ride back into Los Angeles had more traffic as I would have expected, but I was so relaxed from earlier that this didn’t sour my mood. I chose to take a slightly different route back into the city in hopes of cutting down on traffic, but it’s LA – you expect traffic. I took CA-118 E, to I 210 E, to CA-2 S, then I was back in the cluttered city. I spent most of my drive back lane splitting and defensive driving, but all is well that ends well.
If I had to rate this trip I’d give it a solid 7/10. The weather was nice, the route was simple and straight forward, traffic to Rocky Peak Park was light, and the hiking was a highlight. Plus, I wrapped this trip up in less than four hours. I recommend this trip to anyone looking to slide a ride into their busy schedule.
Stay safe in these streets!