About 7% of Americans live within 60 miles of the Santa Monica Mountains. “Greater Los Angeles” now stretches in a continuous mega-urb (interrupted only by one large Army base), from Ventura to the Mexican border. 150 miles of solid city. Seriously.
What’s a nature lover to do? First is sea kayaking. 200 yards offshore, at any time of year except summer weekends, you can paddle in near silence. A seal pops his head up, three yards away. A dolphin speeds by. Bright orange garibaldi shimmer fifteen feet below.
Second is river cycling. Hidden among the city is a spider web of river trails, some concrete, many not. Here is my daily bicycle commute: