The hoariest cliché about Los Angeles is that it's the place where you can ski and surf on the same day. No one does that. Because, duh, traffic. The whole dumb idea must have come from some 1960s tourism campaign. And no one skis anymore, either. They go hiking. Here's a hike you can do on your lunch break, if you happen to be in the Northeast L.A./Pasadena area. Eagle Rock Canyon Trail starts at the base of Eagle Rock — the actual rock, where deep shadows create the shape of a huge bird's wings — just off the 134 freeway. The trail is a mile long. At the top, it affords views of downtown and the ocean. Go, clear your head. And save the whole surf-and-ski fantasy for the rubes. End of Eagle Rock View Drive, off Patrician Way. —Gene Maddaus

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