In the hills of Los Angeles just off the California 110 freeway, is 282 acres of green space near the Arroyo Seco. Located just northeast of Downtown LA, Ernest E. Debs Regional Park offers some spectacular views of the LA skyline. Even better are the relatively easy trails perfect for hiking and biking. The park also features an Audubon Center for budding ornithologists and bird lovers, as well as barbecue pits and plenty of picnic space. With the Audubon Center being closed for the time being, my favorite area of the park is the pond.
To celebrate my birthday back in July, my son Nate and I took a little trek up down to Debs Park. The day was very warm, and many parts of the trail from the parking lot to the pond were not very well shaded, despite the population of California walnut and live oak trees. Even so, with sunscreen and water for both ourselves and the pupper, we were fine making the trek. Soon enough we were in the shade of the trees, and not long after that, we were at the pond.
The pond was a treat for Owen. I wasn’t sure of the water quality so I was not going to allow him to wade in it, but he did get his paws wet. We did enjoy seeing the turtles hanging out by the water, and there were plenty of birds, as well as insects to keep us fascinated. After enjoying the pond, we walked over a few yards where the trees cleared out and took in the views of Los Angeles.
It was not difficult getting to the park in Montecito Heights. From California 110, we took the exit to Via Marisol. The fastest way to get to the trail closest to the pond turned out to be by following Google maps to the Ernest E. Debs parking lot. It was an easy trek, and one worth taking. Debs Regional Park is perfect for afternoon picnics and woodsy adventures, all with easy reach from the big city. Happy trails!
For more information and park operating hours, check out the Los Angeles Department of Parks and Recreation.
For the Audubon Center, check out their website. Hopefully they’ll open back up again soon.