Friday, January 2, 2015

Pasadena to Studio City, Part 1

I've been living in Studio City for a while and working in Pasadena for just as long. In that time I've gone from driving to work every day to pretty much not driving to work for the last 9 years. By that I don't mean I get to work from home (ha! what a nice dream....), but instead I've used countless other ways besides driving alone to get between home and work - carpooling, Metro trains, combination of Metro trains & buses, walking and bus, bike & bus... you get the idea. One thing I hadn't done though was bike all the way between my home and work. While you can drive fairly directly between my 2 destinations using freeways, biking requires some more indirect routes because of the freeways, mountains and other steep hills, so the distance between is ~20 miles, depending on your exact route. While I've biked over 30 miles on my hybrid bike in a single go, it wasn't the most comfortable experience in the world, & once I got my road bike last summer, I realized that it would probably be a great bike to use for this ride. I built myself up to riding longer distances on the road bike by going out for longer rides on the weekend. I explored and biked in some of the areas I knew I would have to use in getting between the 2 destinations including going on the LA River Bike path and biking around in North Glendale. Then I set the goal of biking home on a day that I got out of work early (for me, this means the days before holidays.) I had hoped to do this in July, but unfortunately I came down with a pretty intense case of the flu a couple days beforehand. For Labor Day I was at Burning Man, so the next possible option was before Thanksgiving. So, that's what I did!

The first time I rode it was little intense since we had 90+ degree temps that day. Between the unexpected heat and not knowing the areas or route I decided to take, I felt a little beat once I got home (I literally just barely took enough water in my camelbak along), but I made it home! It was awesome! I ended up biking west across Pasadena and crossed over the Arroyo to Highland Park. Then I went across Highland Park using the bike lane on York, through Gassell Park and then Atwater Village before hopping on the LA River bike path and riding that to Riverside drive and then home! I loved the LA river bike path, although the I-5 right next to it sucked, but I kinda already covered some of that last time I wrote about the LA River bike path. One thing I forgot though was a camera! Ack! So then I decided I would do the ride again, this time the day before Christmas Eve! This time unfortunately I was getting over a cold (hmm.. see a theme here?), so I wasn't sure if I wanted to bike all the way home or just hop on the train in Highland Park. When I was near the train I realized I wasn't ready to stop riding, so I biked the rest of the way home, but this time with my Holga still in hand.

biking down El Molino
Knowing better where I was going this time, I took this ride between Pasadena and Studio City a little more casually, stopping to explore and take photos with my Holga 35mm along the way. This first set is through Pasadena, where I stopped to explore an awesome little garden park called Arlington Park. The park doesn't look like much from the street where I approached, but once I got inside I enjoyed walking through the 3 acres of land, discovering all sorts of awesome things like the last orange grove in Pasadena (where you could pick 1 orange per a visit and the rest left in the late winter go towards marmalade that's sold to keep the park up!), a labyrinth and tons of little quiet garden rooms nestled within a variety of plant life with chairs, benches & tables for quiet relaxation. It was seriously one of the best little free parks I've ever been to. If I worked or lived closer, I would be there all of the time and volunteering. I would love to make a park like this where I live and I have so many ideas of things you could use the space for including classes for art like drawing, painting or photography & so many other things. WHY don't these exist everyplace?! Spaces like this are desperately missing from a city like Los Angeles with so many apartment/condo dwellers with no outside space of their own.

looking towards Pasadena Ave from Arlington Park.
The orange grove begins on the left of the path

labyrinth in Arlington Park

"I wish for passion to always preface work. Love Caitlin" A remnant from a wedding held in the park...

looking down the sidewalk on Orange Grove in Pasadena

No comments:

Post a Comment