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"Experience is a hard teacher. She gives the test first and the lessons afterwards." - Anonymous

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Castle Peak Hike, West Hills, California

Castle Peak hike is one of the best hikes in Southern California. It starts from the El Scorpian park (on Vanowen st, 100 yards west of Valley Circle Blvd) . It is believed that the Spanish, when they came exploring, and settling, named this peak as "El Scorpion" (the scorpion). The peak does look a bit like the raised stinger of a scorpion. Anyway, this trail starts out just west of Vanowen St and Valley Circle Blvd. It is a nice stroll up to the base of the peak. But the climb up to the top is a challenge. The view of the west vally from the peak is tremendous. It's worth the effort to get to the top. However, if it seems too daunting, then you can take the many paths that lead off toward the west. The terrain is mostly rolling hills in the brush. You will find lots of trails that crisscross. The most popular trails are dirt roads cut into the land. These are used by horse riders, mountain bikers as well as hikers. You can take you dogs, but be warned the area has ticks.

Who this hike is for:

This is not for young kids if you are trying to reach the Castle Peak. It is straight up and can be risky at places. Also, this hike is not recommended for someone who is just going on the first hike. The starting 25% or wo part, until you reach the castle peak, can prove to be a strenuous hike for most people. Look at the pictures below to feel this hike.

Here is the view of the Castle Peak:

castle peak, west hills

Trailhead:

Just west of Vanowen St and Valley Circle Blvd in West Hills, Southern California.

 

The Castle Peak loop we did was around 5 miles with around 1000 feet elevation (guess) gain.

Let me take you on a virtual tour of this hike:
1. This is where you park your car on Vanowen St off of Valley Circle Blvd. In the background is the Castle Peak!

West hills

2. Getting closer to Castle Peak

Castle Park

3. Getting still closer to Castle Peak
Castle Park

4. Getting on to the Castle Peak now
West hills, Castle Park

5. Climbing onto the Castle Peak

6. We are on the Castle Peak now!
Relaxing and enjoying views.
West hills, Castle Park

7. Looks like we own this world. Noone else around us



8. Getting down from the other side to main trails. I guess half point of our hike.

West hills, Castle Park

 

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