It's time to put your leg muscles to work--it's Bike Week here in Los Angeles. We think every week should be Bike Week, but for those who need an extra push to get you to pedal, take a look at some of our favorite paths to take your trusty two-wheeler, courtesy of our L.A. River Field Guide:
1. Arroyo Seco Creek Path: Enjoy the beautiful bridges and sycamore trees by riding along the in-channel Arroyo Seco bike path that carves through the beautiful neighborhoods of Northeast L.A. Get a little history lesson along the way at El Alisal, the stone house hand-built by eccentric Renaissance Man Charles Fletcher Lummis.
2. Griffith Park Loops: The eastern edge of the park offers one of the finest bike rides in the city. You can stop at The Autry and enjoy their amazing collection of Western Movie Posters, or see the newest residents of the L.A. Zoo: Asian elephants.
3. Glendale Narrow and Elysian Valley Path: Whether you're in Burbank, Glendale, Los Feliz, Atwater Village, or Frogtown, this bike path is never too far away. With a natural river bottom that attracts greenery and many species of birds, this is one of the most picturesque areas of the L.A. River.
4. Hansen Dam Paths: A local favorite, this Lake View Terrace path offers fantastic views of Big and Little Tujunga Canyons as well as the Angeles National Forest. But the main attraction here is the dam itself, a magnificent 2 mile long, 97 foot high concrete dam built in 1940.
5. Sepulveda Basin Loops: Another soft-bottom stretch of the L.A. River, this path at the Sepulveda Basin Recreation Area in Van Nuys offers spaces for fishing, boating, and picnics alongside lush wildlife. You can also give your legs a break at the calming Japanese gardens.
6. Compton Creek Paths: This path along a major tributary of the L.A. River provides an urban concrete view in the upper portions, and a natural wildlife habitat in the bottom. Don't be surprised to see horses on the path, as Richland Farms is not too far away.
7. LaRio, Upper Rio Hondo, and Santa Anita Wash: Stretching from the south end to the north end of El Monte, this path offers a uniquely urban ride with sounds of planes flying overhead by the El Monte Airport. It's not all exhausts however, as it passes through lots of parkland and wildlife stemming from a natural-bottomed stretch of the Rio Hondo, a tributary of the L.A. River.
8. South County Path: This 5.8 mile path can be combined with the LaRio path to form 17 miles of unobstructed bikeway stretching from the San Gabriel Valley to Lynwood, and for the distance riders, all the way to Long Beach.