The Hollyridge Trail traces fire roads through Griffith Park and leads 1.75 miles to the a vista atop Mount Lee, home of the famous Hollywood Sign. One of America's most iconic day trips and easily one of California's top hikes, the hike to the Hollywood Sign presents unforgettable views of the Los Angeles metro area. Unfortunately, due to a dispute over access, the Hollyridge Trail is closed until further notice. The best alternative is to approach from Canyon Drive using the Brush Canyon Trailhead. You can also consider the hike from Lake Hollywood Drive via the Tree of Life Trail.
If it ever reopens, the Hollyridge Trail is a unique experience in that it lies near the heart of one of the largest metropolitan areas in the United States; you'll notice a few more security barriers and more fashionably dressed hikers on this trial as a result. The trail will take hikers higher and higher above Los Angeles and to vistas overlooking many identifiable landmarks of the city and of popular culture.
The hike begins at the top of North Beachwood Drive and traces dusty fire roads up the south face of Mount Lee. It climbs through part of the open land of Griffith Park, opening up to views of the Griffith Park Observatory (which can be accessed from this trail for those up for a longer hike) and the towers of downtown Los Angeles.
Eventually the trail meets up with the access road to the radio tower at the top of the mountain, turning the hike into a steep asphalt road that climbs to views of Burbank and Glendale down the north slope.
At about 1.75 miles the road follows a sharp S-curve and comes to the fenced perimeter of the Hollywood Sign and the radio towers that are visible from much of the Los Angeles area. If one walked toward the entrance gate to the parking area, a small path leads left and up a final scramble to a clearing with panoramic views of much of the county. From here, views stretch west to the downtown towers of Santa Monica and Century City, down to the Hollywood Bowl concert venue, east to downtown Los Angeles, Dodger Stadium, and to the domed roofs of the observatory. To the north is the San Fernando Valley with the San Gabriel Mountains rising in the background. Note that it is illegal to access the Hollywood Sign itself; this is closest one can legally come to the sign.
The pedestrian gate at Sunset Ranch is unlocked daily from 5 a.m. until 8 p.m. The hike lies within the Los Angeles County Parks system, and it is subject to all the park rules, including curfew hours between 10:30 p.m. and 5 a.m. Parking is available for free along North Beachwood Drive. However, there is no parking along the portion of the road near the Sunset Ranch gate between 8 a.m. and 6 p.m. weekends and holidays, so you may need to park up to a mile away from the gate and walk. Dogs are allowed on the trail, though they must be leashed per Los Angeles County Parks ordinance. Also, note that mountain lions have been sighted along this trail after dark.