A couple miles north of Sunset Blvd in the Palisades lies Paseo Miramar, a five-mile hike that gives you some of the most gobsmacking views of the Pacific Ocean you’ll ever witness.

But first, you must pay a price.

I’m not going to lie to you: the first two miles of this thing — a steep, winding, seemingly endless incline up the canyon, with each corner promising relief that never comes — are going to kick you in the face. They are going to kick the faces of your friends, your pets, your distant family members, and your unborn children. You may even regret not packing a portable defibrillator. Add a ponytail to them and they’d be Steven Segal in Out For JusticeYour suffering is going to be legendary.

But then, after about 45 minutes, something magical happens: your body accepts its fate. And before you know it, the incline levels out, and you’re slaloming down through green tree-tunnels and past wetlands and up through fields of high, honey-colored grass. Finally, you hit the top and there’s a wooden bench waiting for you. You flop down and drink in the views of the rolling Palisades, the muted sprawl of the city, the toy-sized Santa Monica Ferris Wheel in the distance, and that sheet of blue rippling from the crescent edges of the continent. It’s all yours.

Masochism: it has its upsides.

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WHAT: Hike in the Palisades
WHEN: Good all year round
WHERETrail starts at the top of Paseo Miramar Rd

$$$: Free

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