Goodbye 2014! Griffith Park Run To The Hollywood Sign

A Griffith Park Run To the Hollywood Sign

(Phil Hospod)

Greetings from sunny California! I’m here for a New Year’s runcation, and so far, I’m cleaning up. I’ve logged 11.5 miles in two mornings. But today’s run was the best: a Los Angeles Griffith Park run to the Hollywood Sign in the Hollywood Hills.

Space Shuttle Endeavor

I arrived late Monday night and awoke to a cold, rainy day on Tuesday. What to do in LA on a rainy day? I visited with a dear friend and her kids at the California Science Center, where we saw the Space Shuttle Endeavor.

A Griffith Park Run To The Hollywood Sign

Endeavour (

A Griffith Park Run To The Hollywood Sign

Endeavour’s tail (

It was pretty incredibly to see this beast up close and personal. The tones and textures of the tile and thermal blankets that line the shuttle are so interesting in person. We had a great time at the museum.

Griffith Park Run To The Hollywood Sign

This morning, I awoke to sunrise looking over the Hollywood Hills from The Line Hotel in LA (my husband, Phil, works for the company that owns the hotel). The rain cleared away any trace of the city’s famous smog, leaving a glorious, clear sky. This was one of those clear days where you really can see forever.

A Griffith Park Run To The Hollywood Sign

Hello Hollywood! (Phil Hospod)

So Phil and I hopped in our rental car and headed for a run in the city’s sprawling Griffith Park, a 4,310-acre oasis in the Santa Monica Mountains and home to the famous Hollywood Sign. (Yup, it’s five times the size of New York City’s Central Park).

A Griffith Park Run To The Hollywood Sign

Sunrise over LA (Phil Hospod)

We headed for the dirt road that leads to a communication tower on the ridge line above the sign. It was a cool 40-degrees and a bit windy. That might be cold for Angelenos, but that’s not about to stop a Montrealer and Chicagoan turned New Yorkers.

All told, it was a 5.8-mile roundtrip from the parking lot on Canyon Drive near Camp Hollywoodland.

A Griffith Park Run To The Hollywood Sign

Running to the Hollywood Sign (Phil Hospod)

This is one of those runs that could be a hike or a run or a run/hike depending on the level of workout you’re looking for. You’ve got an elevation gain of a little over 1,000 feet over the course of 2.9 miles, per my GPS watch. It levels out a bit once you reach the ridge line. You could walk up or get in a challenging, slow jog. We did a run/walk combo on the way up and ran all the way back down.

Griffith Park Run To The Hollywood Sign

Last run of 2014! (Phil Hospod)

Once we got to the top, the view was worth fighting the wind and 1,000 feet of elevation gain.

Griffith Park Run To The Hollywood Sign

Glorious morn (Phil Hospod)

Either way, it’s a spectacular trail with stunning views from mountain to city to ocean.

When I got back to the room, I took a picture of our view with the Hollywood Sign in the distance to appreciate the run even more. What a perfect way to start the last day of the year!

Griffith Park Run To The Hollywood Sign

View from The Line Hotel (

Griffith Park Run To The Hollywood Sign

Hollywood Sign close-up (

So goodbye 2014! Hello New Year! Have a great one, everybody!

Griffith Park Run To The Hollywood Sign

Happy New Year!

Karla Bruning


Karla Bruning is a race announcer at the TCS New York City Marathon + other major events, TV host for the New York City Triathlon + contributor to Shape, Redbook, Runner's World + other publications. She used to report for Newsweek but spent her free time squeezing in workouts. Now it's her job. She's run 8 marathons, 30 halves, 10 triathlons + open water swims. When she's not running, talking about running or writing about running, she's snuggling her baby, spoiling her dog + compulsively traveling.


12 2014

10 Comments Add Yours ↓

The upper is the most recent comment

  1. 1

    Gorgeous views! I never ran up to the Hollywood sign, but I know Griffith Park well. My parents used to take me there for pony rides when I was really little. Enjoy CA for me. I’m jealous.

    Happy New Year!
    Elle recently posted..Review: MyASICS Training PlanMy Profile

  2. 3

    Such a cool view! I’m envious of your running/travel adventures. I hope to read more of them in 2015 :)
    Judith recently posted..Uneven Training CycleMy Profile

  3. 5

    Oh wow!! How amazing is that view from the top?? Definitely worth it. And running up to the Hollywood sign is on my life (bucket) list. Happy New Year!
    Emily recently posted..Life and Racing in 2014My Profile

    • Karla Bruning

      Happy New Year to you too! We were so lucky to get a clear day!

  4. 7

    Great runcation! Happy 2015 to you both. Very cool photos of the Hollywood sign from the back – we’ve only seen the typical tourist view from the front. On the next trip we’re hoping to do some ‘space tourism’ in Florida – love all that technology.
    Ewen recently posted..Finishing 2014 better than 2013My Profile

    • Karla Bruning

      Thanks a happy 2015 to you too! I’ve heard the Space Coast stuff in Florida is really fun! Never done it. There was a Space Center at the Museum of Science & Industry in Chicago that I loved when I was a kid.
      Karla Bruning recently posted..My Running New Year’s Resolutions For 2015My Profile

  5. 9

    I was following along on Instagram. Looks like you had a blast. What a cool experience. And I imagine you were far enough away from the LA smog up there???

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