Eric and I try to make notes about our hikes, and I’ve saved this one about Luke’s first hike. Since this hike, we’ve gone out many more times with great success. Fortunately for us, Luke is always happy to be outside and tolerates the Moby and the hiking backpack really well. We’re looking forward to the day when he can pull his own weight up some of these hills though!

Location: Franklin Canyon

Duration: 2-ish miles

Elevation: 150 feet

Route Link:

Notes: The opening scene to the Andy Griffith Show was filmed on this trail


There aren’t too many people I know who would hit the trails with a six-week old in tow, but my parents took me camping at six-weeks, so I figured we were well within the limits of reason when we took Luke out early on. In fact, I’m questioning why we didn’t do it sooner.

Our good friend Chris decided to join us for the day. Sometimes I wonder why he continues to accept our invitations for these wild adventures, since we inevitably bite off more than we’ve assured him we are going to.

We popped Lucas into the Moby wrap and after a quick stop at the nature center, headed on our way. The trail starts off with (what felt like to me) a steep incline. The way up was nothing compared to the way back down. Unable to see my feet over the carrier, the loose dirt and crevice from the rain water made us all a little nervous about the likelihood that I would fall. By taking our time and getting a spot from Eric on a few occasions, we managed it just fine. It was just wild enough to allow us to make some jokes about what the grandparents would think of our adventures. Truthfully though, for anyone who hikes regularly, this would be a breeze. The peak gives you good views of the lake and the gigantic houses along Coldwater and Mulholland.

We dropped down into the ravine and then followed the path around the lake. I was thrilled to see so many turtles, while Chris and Eric were on the lookout for the iconic spot where Andy Griffith was seen fishing.

IMG_3312About halfway around the lake, Luke woke up from his nap and was ready to nurse. Our first mid-hike nursing experience was fine, but not the most comfortable I’ve had. Later, leaning up against a tree proved to be much more comfortable, and I’m sure with practice we’ll get better. The sooner we do, the sooner we’ll be able to take on some of our favorite 8-plus mile treks.

Toward the end of the hike we walked around a second small pond. At this point Luke was out of his carrier and getting lots of attention from other families and couples walking along. Everyone was concerned about his temperature even if they had conflicting opinions. “Isn’t he cold?” “He must be so hot with those socks on” “How old is that tiny baby?” I’m sure it won’t be the last time we raise a few eyebrows with our parenting choices.

A short outing for sure, and one I’d definitely recommend for other novice hikers or families looking to introduce their little ones to the outdoors.