Yes, you are permitted to run on Ballona Creek Bike Path, which stretches from Syd Kronenthal Park in Culver City all the way to Playa del Rey Beach. There will be cyclists whizzing past you, homeless dudes slouched over on the shoulder, and occasional taggers beautifying bridge underpasses. But this path is a Los Angeles urban wonder, an opportunity to escape the traffic, smog and crowded sidewalks and run your heart out alongside a pretty creek. You'll see egrets, herons and, um, a lot of other birds we can't identify, while jogging on asphalt. (Though not as good as dirt, it's easier on your knees than concrete.) The best part is that at the trail's end awaits the ocean. We're not saying you'd be wise to strip off your sweaty clothes and dive in — it's not a nude beach, after all. But we won't call the cops. —Ben Westhoff

Syd Kronenthal Park, 3459 McManus Ave., Culver City, 90232, stretching to the Pacific Ocean.

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