Three Hiking Spots to Work Off Thanksgiving

Three Hiking Spots to Work Off Thanksgiving

You don’t need the gym to work off that Thanksgiving bloat. Instead, take a stroll outside with friends or family at one of these hiking destinations.

  1. Chantry Flats; Sturtevant Falls Trail

Right in the hills of Arcadia and Sierra Madre, California is the Chantry Flats recreation area full of various trials. Many take on the Sturtevant Falls trail because it is only a 1 and 1/4 miles and ends at a nice resting spot with a normally large waterfall (when there has been rain and water). Just be fair warned that while it is an easy trail, the hike back can be rough for some since there is a large incline and hill coming back up.

2.   Sycamore Canyon Park

Even in the busy city of Diamond Bar, California there is a nice hiking spot. Visit the Sycamore Canyon Park for a quick and easy hike with some nice views. It is less than a mile around, however there are tons of stairs for a great leg workout.

3. Eaton Canyon Natural Area

Just up from the heart of Pasadena, California is the Eaton Canyon hike. This hike is a little more crowded with youngsters and dogs, but the views are nice. Just like Chantry Flats, this hike will end at a nice resting area with a cooling waterfall and is only a mile and a half.

So after resting our bellies from the turkey and pie for a couple hours, let’s go try out these hikes!

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Under the Sea: Aquarium of the Pacific

Under the Sea: Aquarium of the Pacific

Sebastian from The Little Mermaid said it best: “Just look at the world around you, right here on the ocean floor. Such wonderful things surround you, what more is you looking for?” So why not explore the ocean creatures at the Aquarium of the Pacific?

The Aquarium of the Pacific is a public aquarium located in Long Beach, California, that houses a collection of exhibits, that show off over 500 speices of the Pacific. These habitats don’t just include the obvious like various fish, sharks, and stingrays, but also it allows you to experience land-ish creatures like lorikeets, sea otters, and penguins.

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Best Friend and I ready for adventure. Picture taken by J.M. Weir

One of my favorites is the lorikeet forest. This is a great exhibit to take your friends, family, or kids into (unless you’re afraid of birds) because you get to interact with the lorikeets. At the front of the lorikeet forest, you can buy little cups of nectar, and because they love that stuff, the lorikeets will be all over your arms, head, or body in general. I know it sounds overwhelming or gross, but these are dazzling creatures with their bright colors and sweet nature, so it is a blast having them all around you sipping the nectar.

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Bird Lady. Picture taken by A.J. Huang

Another great exhibit to catch is the stingray tank. This is located in the outside area near the Shark Lagoon and seal exhibit. This is a fun area to try as well because, like the Shark Lagoon, you are able to reach your hand into their tank and pet the rays as they fly by. Not only that, but ocassionally you can make it for feeding time to see them eat and maybe even toss them a treat.

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Waiting to get pet or for food. Picture taken by J.M. Weir

But of course, let’s not overlook the obvious. Many visitors of the aquarium go straight for the outdoor exhibits and shows and miss out on all the amazing and beautiful creatures that the aquarium started from; the fish and other marine life.

You can start your tour of the marine life tanks as soon as you walk in the place as there is a massive fish tank straight ahead. From there you can walk around and be amazed by the dazzling Tropical Pacific Gallery that houses creatures like the Weedy Sea Dragon or normal seahorse, or even catch some “Finding Nemo” friends like the clown fish.

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There’s so much to explore. Picture taken by J.M. Weir

From there, enjoy the entire place. Check out as much as you can because this aquarium has so much to offer. You can check out the animal care center, various lectures and interactive rooms, and more.

So as if this post isn’t Disney enough, “just keep swimming” around the place and absorb, like a sea sponge, as much as you can about the amazing Pacific Ocean and all its life!

Step by Step, Little by Little: Thousand Steps Beach

Step by Step, Little by Little: Thousand Steps Beach

After a long week of work, school, or even midterms (like I just had to go through) what is a better way to unwind than the beach?

Thousand Steps Beach is a hidden treasure in Laguna, California. It is quite the trip to get down to the beach (make sure you’ve been doing your cardio), as you have to walk down about 230 steps, but it is well worth it.

Picture taken by J.M. Weir
The Stairs. Picture taken by J.M. Weir

This beach is known for its seclusion, large waves that crash beautifully over the rocks, and for the tide pools and sea caves. However, be careful with the sea caves, if it is high tide or going to be you don’t want to be trapped inside the caves.

Feeling like Indiana Jones. Picture taken by E.E. O'Brien
Feeling like Indiana Jones. Picture taken by E.E. O’Brien
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Dazzling Sunsets. Picture taken by J.M. Weir

And as the day wears on, this beach only gets more beautiful. It shows off the most gorgeous and colorful sunset I think I’ve ever seen. Make sure to bring your cameras for some amazing pictures.

But don’t forget, after this day of beauty and adventure in tide pools and caves…you have to hike up what feels like a thousands of stairs to your car.

If you want to know more about this adventure, check out this short YouTube video.

So go out and enjoy this dazzling and lovely beach for yourself!