Southern California Adventure Activities
In a land known for its yoga studios and health food stores, Southern California is also, unsurprisingly, home to an abundance of outdoor recreational adventures.
Enjoy healthy living while soaking up the Southland’s diverse landscape, where snow-covered mountains, bustling big cities and the sparkling blue waters of the Pacific all converge.
Taking It To the Streets
Held approximately three to four times a year, CicLAvia is a public event where the streets of Los Angeles are reserved for mass groups of cyclists, skaters, walkers and joggers. The routes are closed to cars for about 6 hours. The location varies with past events occurring in such areas as South L.A., Santa Monica, downtown L.A. and Culver City.
Roller boogie the evening away with L.A. Friday Night Skate, a weekly meet-up for anywhere from 40 to 80 roller skaters. The group skates through the streets of Hollywood, downtown Los Angeles and Santa Monica over the course of 10 miles. Disco music is played during the journey for an added bit of fun.
Big Bear Mountain Resorts is tucked away in the San Bernardino Mountains, just two hours east of Los Angeles. The resort has 24 runs for skiers and snowboarders, including three double black diamond trails, along with a snowboarding terrain park outfitted with 120 jumps, 80 jibs and super and half pipes.
Also set in the San Bernardino Mountains, Rim Nordic Ski Area is in the small mountain town of Running Springs. The terrain is equipped with 10 miles of groomed snowshoeing and cross country skiing trails, including sections appropriate for all skill levels. The ski area also provides lessons and equipment rentals.
Dubbed “Surf City USA,” Huntington Beach hosts an array of major surf competitions throughout the year. Learn how to ride the waves like a pro at Banzai Surf School, which offers public group and private surf lessons for kids and adults. Instruction lasts approximately two hours and includes use of a surfboard and wetsuit.
Explore the underwater world of the Pacific Ocean via Waterhorse Charters, a San Diego-based tour company that specializes in scuba diving. Take a customized dive boat, the Humboldt, out to Wreck Alley, a spot off Pacific Beach filled with shipwrecks, or visit dense kelp beds in Point Loma. Rates include air tanks and food, but dive gear fees are separate.
Experience the rush of downhill mountain biking at Snow Summit in Big Bear Lake. The ski resort has a bike park with trails for advanced and intermediate riders, including paths outfitted with berms and bridges. An on-site shop has bikes and protective gear available for rent. Vans Skate Park is inside the O.C.-based mall, the Outlets at Orange.
The facility includes indoor and outdoor courses complete with ramps, ledges, pools, rails and banks. The venue provides rentals and lessons upon request. Separate sessions are held for skaters and BMX-ers.