Trail. Starting from Switzer's Picnic Area in the
Angeles National Forest, this trail leads through one
of the best segments of the Arroyo Seco. Once past the
picnic area crowds, you'll cross the Arroyo Seco
numerous times along the mile to an overlook for
Switzer's Falls. The Gabrielino Trail continues all
the way to Altadena, almost 10 miles from the picnic
area access point. To reach Switzer's Picnic Area,
take the Angeles Crest Highway (State 2) 10 miles from
Interstate 210 in La Cañada Flintridge. You can also
access the Gabrielino Trail from a trailhead at
Windsor Avenue and Ventura Street north of Interstate
210. An Adventure Pass ($5) is required for parking
and trail use within the national forest. (818)
Arroyo Park. This park south of the 1913 Colorado
Street Bridge in Pasadena has nice footpaths in the
1.8-mile stretch from the bridge to the South Pasadena
border. At Norwood Dr. off Arroyo Blvd.; (626)
impresario of Arroyo Culture
by David Zaitz
and flamboyant, Charles Lummis built his
Arroyo home with generous amounts of
river-washed stone. The gardens are now a
good example of water-thrifty landscaping.
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ethnographer, and archaeologist, Charles Fletcher Lummis was
an original: In 1884, he walked from Ohio to Los Angeles,
along the way becoming enraptured by the Southwest and its
native cultures. He settled in the Arroyo, where he built his
home — which he called El Alisal, meaning place of the
sycamores — from Arroyo boulders in a style that hints at
cliff dwellings while combining Craftsman and California
his many travels, Lummis amassed a huge collection of Native
American art and artifacts. Credited as one of those who
brought a Southwest aesthetic to the Arroyo, he founded the
Southwest Museum in 1914, which still has one of the great
collections of Native American art.
flamboyant, charismatic man, Lummis became one of the leading
figures in the Arroyo and often hosted wild cultural
gatherings he dubbed Noises. "He was the impresario of
the Arroyo Culture," says Thomas F. Andrews, executive
director of the Historical Society of Southern California.
"And through his writing and photography, he had a major
impact on what the West became in people's minds."
Alisal. 12–4 Fri–Sun; free. 200 E. Ave. 43,
Highland Park; (323) 222-0546.
Museum. 10–5 Tue–Sun.; $6. 234 Museum Dr., Los
Angeles; (323) 221-2164.