A Family Outing
Nothing is more Southern California than the movies. It’s our very own homegrown industry and that puts us at ground zero in the dreams of the whole world. We see glimpses of the movie industry at nearly every turn: a recognizable face in the grocery store, a filming crew on location clogging a street, driving by the busy studios, or Variety at the newsstand with headlines like “Buffo! Socko!” The movie business surrounds us. We love it.
So with this in mind, let’s go on an easy stroll where the milieu of making movies, really old movies to be sure, still lingers in the air. Here’s what we want for our outing: first it must be free as well as close to Los Angeles, and of course mom and kids friendly, and pet friendly also, not too long, and of course easy to walk. Oh, yes- and shaded. After all, this is Southern California. Believe it or not, there are hikes that do fit this description. One that quickly comes to our minds is the Corriganville Regional Park in Simi Valley. You’ve never been there? Well…
Corriganville was founded by Ray “Crash” Corrigan, a cowboy and movie stunt man. He bought land out beyond the rim of Los Angeles, in Simi Valley and created Corriganville a filming location and a western movie theme amusement park. It was quite famous in its day but it’s gone now. Corrigan’s land became the current regional park. However the man-made lakebed, now named Robin Hood Lake, is still there as is the sunken room where cameras could film under the water through thick windows. And those rock formations look so familiar. Didn’t we see Johnny Weissmuller dive into a crocodile infested river to save Maureen O’Sullivan from up there?
The Corrigan Regional Park at 7001 Smith Road, Simi Valley, welcomes families looking for an interesting place to stroll. There are port-a-potties, mutt mitts (you know, to pick up Fido’s doo-doo), benches, informative plaques for kids to read, and a couple modest loops (the longest about a mile around) where mom and dad can meander leisurely with the stroller.
Originally you had to travel the Santa Susanna Pass to get there but now it’s accessible by the Ronald Reagan Freeway. Take the 118 to Kuehner Drive, south to Smith Road. Make a left turn onto Smith Road and proceed to the parking lot. After your outing take a moment and share your comments with other families at www.thishikingtrail.com.