Hiking Trails Close in the Santa Monica Mountains as Deadly Heat Ravages the Region

Officials are recommending people limit time outdoors as temps threaten to reach 119 in some spots

After several heat-related rescue operations and the death of a 41-year-old hiker on Saturday, officials have closed hiking trails in the Santa Monica mountains. The National Park Service has also closed trails in Ventura County through 5 p.m. on Labor Day, and the City of Burbank has shut down the Wildwood Canyon and Stough Canyon hiking trails through Tuesday.

Sunday’s high temps are expected to eclipse Saturday’s dreadful heat, threatening to climb as high as 119 degrees in some places, according to an extreme heat advisory. The National Weather Service is advising locals to “hydrate and limit time outdoors.”

The conditions are particularly troubling for the unhoused, who can’t readily limit their time outdoors. There are currently only five cooling centers operating in the City of Los Angeles, and people are being advised to call ahead to check availability:

  • Lafayette Recreation Center | 625 S Lafayette Park Pl, Los Angeles, CA 90057 | (213) 384-0562
  • Canoga Park Senior Center |  7326 Jordan Ave, Canoga Park, CA 91303   |  (818) 340-2633
  • Lake View Terrace Recreation Center |  11075 Foothill Blvd, Lake View Terrace, CA 91342  | (818) 899-8087
  • South LA Sports Activity Center | 7020 S Figueroa St, Los Angeles, CA 90003 | (323) 758-8716
  • Normandale Recreation Center | 22400 South Halldale Ave., Torrance, CA 90501 | (310) 328-3689

There are many more county-operated facilities (see the full list here), though local advocacy groups are recommending distributing frozen bottled water to unhoused neighbors who can’t access a cooling center.

The outrageous heat has also fueled wildfires throughout the region. East of San Bernardino in Yucaipa, the El Dorado fire grew to upward of 2,700 acres overnight on Saturday and early Sunday, and is currently only 5 percent contained.