Discovering the Beauty of Alabama Hills and Red Rock Canyon State Park

“My most memorable hikes can be classified as shortcuts that backfired.” – Edward Abbey

Alabama Hills
I always have this compulsion to throw myself into the unknown when it comes to exploring new places. I’ve heard about Alabama Hills and knew it was one trip I had to take before 2017 ended. So yeah, this is a late post.

Call me naively optimistic but I find the rugged beauty so deeply inspiring, refreshing and good for the soul. Alabama Hills, located in Lone Pine, Ca, is the perfect place to attract outdoor adventurers of all kinds. You’ll find lots of hills and different rock formations all throughout the area. There are no entrance fees and you can camp for free for 14 days (you do need to get Campfire Permit which is required for open fires, such as campfires, barbecues and portable stoves).

Road to Alabama Hills
The main road to get to Alabama Hills is paved. However, to get to the famous Mobius Arch you’ll drive by a dirt road. Don’t worry no 4 wheel drive required here unless you want to go exploring all over the place.

Hiking Path that leads to Mobius Arch
I’m embarrassed to admit that it took me a while to find Mobius Arch. I got lost somewhere along the way and ended up in a different place so I had to go back and find my way again. The easiest way to find both the Lathe Arch and the Mobius Arch is to start on the left side of the hiking path when you reach the parking lot. From there you’ll see both Arches right away. Yes, it was that easy.

Mobius Arch
It’s definitely not as grand as Arches National Park but there is a certain charm. Alabama Hills is also a famous Hollywood Filming Location. Some of the movies filmed were Tremors, Gladiator, Bonanza, and parts of Star Trek Generations.

On the way back to Los Angeles, I had to stop by at Red Rock Canyon State Park in Cantil, CA. I only had a few hours to spare and I took the Hagen Nature Trail which was fairly easy. Considering the hike was a wide open space it would be pretty foolish of me to get lost in this one.

Red Rock Canyon State Park
Like any besotted traveler, it made me wonder how it was formed. Apparently, the entire area used to be under water. Can you believe this was all the bottom of a lake millions of years ago? Wind and water erosion of these layers created the formations throughout Red Rock – This information was provided by the park. Pretty amazing huh?

Red Rock Canyon State Park
Bel’s Tips for this trip:

1.   Before going on a hike, make sure to research about the place and to let someone know where you’ll be hiking.

2. Try not to be a hero. Don’t go alone. (I know I’m guilty of doing this but don’t follow in my footsteps)

3.   Always bring water. Weather may vary from extremely cold to extremely hot be sure to dress appropriately.

Disclosure: Please be aware I get commissions for purchases made through links in this post at no additional cost to you.  Please read Amazon Affiliate Disclosure and Affiliate Disclosure

Hydration Pack with 1.5 L Backpack Water Bladder. Fits Men and Women with Chest Sizes 27" – 50". Great for Hiking – Running – Biking – Kids

4. Wear good hiking shoes. It’s important.

For Men
Columbia Men’s North Plains Ii Hiking Shoe, Wet Sand, Squash, 12 D US

For Women
Merrell Women’s Siren Sport 2 Hiking Shoe,Black/Pink,8 M US

5. Print out a map of the area or get it from the Visitor Center. Make sure your phone is fully charged but don’t completely rely on it. Bring a compass if you have one.

Sportneer Military Lensatic Sighting Compass with Carrying Bag, Waterproof and Shakeproof, Army Green

6. Bring a swiss knife. You never know when you might need it.

Victorinox Swiss Army Huntsman Pocket Knife, Black,91mm

Please check out my website for other Hiking Gears or Survival Tools.

Survival tools
https://nothingbutgears.com/product-category/camping/survival-tools

Hiking Gears
https://nothingbutgears.com/product-category/hiking-gears

You may follow me on Instagram/Pinterest/LindkedIn which is found at the bottom of my website.

Thanks for reading and feel free to comment below.

-Bel

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141 Comments Add yours

    1. Bel says:

      Thanks for the reblog 😊

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Kelly Goins says:

    Amazing shots! I especially love the top banner photo.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Bel says:

      Thanks! That’s my all time fave picture too! I was blown away by how awesome the view was ❤️

      Like

  2. bluerooster says:

    Nice post. I used to spend a lot of time in the Owens Valley when I lived in California. Nice photos as well.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Bel says:

      Thank you. There is so much to explore in the area…😊

      Like

  3. Melissa says:

    I totally relate to preferring to hike alone. I like to hike (and exercise in general) alone myself. However, I did try a hike near my residence a couple weeks ago and spooked myself after seeing a couple signs warning of mountain lions and rattle snakes. I felt like I kept hearing things rustle in nearby bushes. I’m pretty certain it was just my imagination getting to me, but I ended up giving in and walking back home after only 30 minutes.
    Has this ever happened to you? If so, what do you do to keep yourself calm and focused on the hike/trail?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Bel says:

      Hi, Melissa! I’ve noticed that when I hike I see a lot of lone hikers on the trail as well. I always bring my survival knife with me when I hike – I don’t really believe in not having some sort of weapon to protect myself especially in the wilderness. I’m also trying to find the right hiking staff. The poles are good for long hikes but I feel that it doesn’t give me protection in case of an attack or just to ward off animals who tend to follow you – like coyotes or foxes. I had an incident where two coyotes were following me and I had to use my sturdy tripod to ward them off. If you hike in areas with bears – a bear spray is very helpful. But mostly, I stay away if I see them and if we are on the same trail – I would move to the side and as far away as possible without turning my back – to let them pass. The only time I saw a Mountain Lion was when I was with a group – but they usually tend to stay away so I don’t worry about them. Snakes are the scariest because you don’t see them and I almost stepped on one by accident. Totally freaked me out. If you hike alone – try to go to places where you know there are other hikers as well – at least moderately trafficked areas would help. Sometimes I go on a weekend on my own to a popular hike because it never really gets crowded but it helps to see other people on the trail even if I don’t know them….

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Melissa says:

        Thank you so much for the suggestions, Bel! Much appreciated. I have some cheapo multi-purpose tool thing that I carry in my backpack and could potentially be used as a weapon…but I am carrying it in my backpack so I wouldn’t be able to access it too quickly. Maybe I should get something more pocket-sized like the Swiss Army knives you’ve suggested.

        I don’t have any hiking staffs myself–I’ve used a sturdy stick before left at the entry of a trail but I can’t say I quite knew what to do with it. I’m quite amateur. Guessing a class or 2 at REI would probably be good for me!

        Looking forward to reading more about your adventures (and maybe learning a thing or two). 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Bel says:

        It should definitely be accessible. I use a hunter’s knife that can be hooked to the front of my backpack. And the sturdy stick does help – some say that you’re more likely to encounter a dangerous person more than an animal. I’ve seen those classes at REI and I’ve heard they are good. I’ve been wanting to attend survival classes but they cost too much.

        If you visit National Parks or State Parks they sometimes offer free hikes with a ranger and I found that they are the most knowledgeable about wildlife 😊

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Melissa says:

        Oh yes… I can see your point regarding the dangerous person! (Helps that I just watched the movie “Wild” last night with Reese Witherspoon, in which her characters hikes PCT and encounters many things… including a dangerous person.)
        The REI classes *are* expensive! That’s something that’s held me back from committing too. I like your suggestion regarding the national/state parks though. In the recreational reserve I hike at they offer something like that (to which I haven’t been but may just to better acquaint myself!)
        Thanks for your reply and ideas. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      4. Bel says:

        I actually haven’t seen that movie yet – I should. It has awesome reviews as well.

        You should check out what they offer at the recreational reserve. I love the people who work at parks because they are willing to help and take the time to talk to you.

        Lastly, you are welcome. I’m glad I could help a fellow solo hiker. 😊

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Wow. What gorgeous photography and what an amazing adventure. Thanks for sharing this.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Bel says:

      Thank you for your kind words. I’m glad you liked it 😊

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Beautiful photographs and inspiring advice – I’m putting this on my list for my next visit to California!

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Bel says:

      Thank you! So many places to explore so little time…😊

      Liked by 1 person

  6. seraphsun says:

    You are truly amazing to do these kind of hiking on your own. I wish I had the guts to! Beautiful photos by the way!

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Bel says:

      Thank you! You should still hike even with someone or with a group. It is definitely recommendable that way! 😊

      Liked by 1 person

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