Officially, it's called the Betty B. Dearing Trail, which begins in Wilacre Park. But everyone calls it Fryman Canyon. The simple 3-mile loop on a fire road offers sweeping views of the San Fernando Valley and the occasional rattlesnake. It's not difficult, but it offers access to other trails that can make it more challenging. (The downhill portion of the hike goes through a residential neighborhood; if you look closely you'll see the trailhead for the Rainforest Trail, a more secluded hike also worth checking out.) There's not much shade, but about halfway along there's a shaded picnic table with views of the mountains to the east. But perhaps Fryman's virtues are best understood in contrast to Runyon Canyon. Unlike Runyon, it's not crowded with celebrity spotters, and hikers generally clean up after their dogs. There is also parking, which used to cost $3 but is now free.
Credit: Gene Maddaus