January 19, 2007

Griffith Observatory on Zero Dollars a Day

Quick! To Telescope!

We parked, walked up and walked in.

We parked near the Greek Theater, just below the orange cones across the road to Griffith Observatory. We walked past the traffic guards at the top of Vermont Canyon Road. Then we walked around the bend, about half a mile, turning left at the fork in the road instead of going through the tunnel.

This Way, Cyclist & Hikers, to Griffith Observatory

At the fork there's another traffic guard. We asked if this was the way for hikers, intending only to find the Mt. Hollywood Hiking Trail. Yes, hikers this way, he said. So we continued up the hill, across the lawn and - seeing an opportunity - into the front door of Griffith Observatory.

Sun from West Shines Upon Griffith Observatory

No reservation. No ticket. No permission. No questions asked. We spent about an hour at the Observatory. Circled the building. Took lots of pictures. Went inside, wondered why a $93 million renovation would leave so many displays not working, so many laser-printed signs taped to the wall.

Above Los Angeles, from Griffith Observatory

We left without seeing everything. Didn't want to push it. This time.


Miles said...

I had a similar experience two weeks ago. I went hiking up Dante's View and when done, I wanted to take some pics around the Observatory. I walked around, saw a backdoor open, and just walked in. The redesign was really amazing, but, like yourselves, I didn't explore too much cause I felt guilty.

blogger said...

And like one of the parking lot guards explained, "It ain't a fortress." - AVN

Will said...

Oh for good grief push it! The reservation-only stance is pure bullpucky. I've been up there a half-dozen times since the observatory reopened by bike and on foot and I make a point of going without the dangblasted reservations. The wife and I hiked up there Saturday from Ferndell and had a grand old guilt-free time enjoying one of my favorite places in L.A. Don't let some burdensome beuarcrats keeping you from seeing a place that Col. Griffith mandated be free and available to all.