Favorite LA Hiking Trails: Charmlee Wilderness Park

*This post was written in partnership with adidas.

I know two things to be true:

  1. 1. Sunshine and sweat will cure most of what ails you

  2. 2. Fitness doesn’t always have to be teeth-gritting tough to be good for you

I never considered myself outdoorsy. Unlike most people I know, I skipped the sports part of school and dove straight into books, happily holed up in my room or lounging in the shade. Blame it on the Southern heat or blame it on my insatiable desire to fill my brain with every bit of information I could find, but between the “playing outside stage” and the “drinking on a patio” stage, my outdoor time dropped off.

When I started hiking later in high school, it was my respite from worrying about SATs. There was something about that solace, which I could never find in my family of eight. I even took an Ornithology class in college, clinging to a reason to leave the sterile biochemistry labs and fluorescent lighting in classrooms. And when I started trail running? It felt like being a kid again. If you’ve ever leapt over a fallen tree, you know what I’m talking about.

We’re lucky, here in LA. Sunshine isn’t seasonal, and a little space from the 405 traffic jam is easily accessible. One of my favorite trails in Los Angeles is Charmlee Wilderness Park in Malibu. It has 590 acres of gorgeous ocean views and fields of wildflowers – plus, if you’re lucky, some cute dogs.

Favorite LA Trails: Charmlee Wilderness Park

The eight mile trail network at Charmlee Wilderness Park is accessible to novice hikers and trail runners, but you’ll still feel those inclines. And if you want those feel-good-kid-again moments I mentioned earlier? This is a perfect spot to test out trail running!


What to Wear

Unlike Runyon or some of the other LA hiking hot spots, Charmlee Wilderness Park isn’t a “hike to be seen” kind of place. Dress for performance and comfort first…and Instagram a close second.  

My go-to hiking outfit:

— A breezy top 

     – Bonus if it shields my shoulders for mid-morning and afternoon hikes!

— Hiking or trail running shoes with plenty of traction. These are made with recycled ocean plastic!

     – There are some boulders worth scaling, and plenty of uneven terrain

A cap

      – Much of the trail network is unshaded. Gotta practice safe sun!

Long pants

     – All those pretty wildflowers come with a lot of insects

Best Hiking in LA

Best Hiking Trails in LA



Other Charmlee Wilderness Park hiking Tips

— Parking is $4 (exact cash only)

— Plan time to take in the ocean views

— Sunscreen. Always sunscreen. I’m loving this totally invisible one lately. 

— No open flames, please. Don’t be that person.

— Don’t forget to bring water!

Best Hiking in Los Angeles: Charmlee Wilderness Park


I love a dark indoor cycling class as much as the next girl. In fact, I love central air conditioning. But if you aren’t taking advantage of this gorgeous summer, I hope you start by getting outside and trying something new – or something that makes you feel like a kid again.

Have more questions? Want to share your favorite hiking trail in LA? Let me know in the comments!