The Talepop Loop explores the less-frequented northern part of Malibu Creek State Park. A few centuries ago, this area was first settled by Chumash Indians, who lived at a village named "Talepop". Most of the western region of Los Angeles County was heavily populated by the Chumash, whose boundaries began here in today’s Malibu Creek State Park and extended all the way to San Luis Obispo. The Chumash lived near creeks and springs, they hunted wild game in the canyons and in the mountains. The village of Talepop survived until the year 1805. It was situated on a mesa between Las Virgenes Creek and Stokes Canyon. Archaeologists have found an abundance of Indian artifacts in this vicinity. You will connect on four different trails (or portions of them) to make a scenic loop. The trails visit a beautiful grassland area with rolling hills dotted with majestic oaks. Although close to major roadways you will get a sense of remoteness and wilderness and may feel re-living the ways of the Chumash.
The route illustrated here total to about 4.7 miles with about 730 feet of elevation gain.
From the parking along the Mulholland Highway take the North Grassland Trail on the north side of the road. After entering the meadow you will immediately see the fenced-in Sepulveda Adobe to your left.
In 1818, the Dominguez family received a Spanish land grant within Las Virgenes Canyon. Some of this land came into the possession of Pedro Alcantara Sepulveda when he married Soledad Maria Magdelena Dominguez in 1857. Pedro Sepulveda built an adobe home near Las Virgenes Creek, but it was destroyed by a flood in 1860. In 1863, he erected the present adobe house. The Sepulvedas had twelve children, nine of which were born in the adobe. In the 1870s, renowned bandit, Tiburcio Vasquez, hid out in the canyon and may have visited the Sepulveda home. Since 1863, someone has always resided in the adobe until it was vacated in 1980.
North Grassland Trail
After 0.3 miles, the North Grassland Trail leads around an electrical substation, joins briefly a paved road, and enters another meadow to your left. On your right is densely wooded Liberty Creek. The trail soon turns sharply right and crosses Liberty Creek on a lovely small wooden bridge. Shortly after the bridge the North Grassland trail ends at the Liberty Canyon Fire Road. If you want to hike the loop in the clockwise direction, turn left for a few hundred yards until the Talepop trail veers off to the right and uphill. The trail now climbs relatively steeply for about 400 feet a grassy hill with ever more expanding views over Las Virgenes Canyon and parts of Malibu Creek State Park. After reaching a little more than 1,000 feet of elevation, the trail eventually levels and you now walk along the ridge with little up and down north. You will soon see the 101 Freeway to the north.
Too soon the trail turns right and descends into an enchanted, wooded little canyon. Prepare to hear numerous songbirds or even spot some deer in this lovely place. After about 1.75 miles the Talepop trail ends at the Las Virgenes Fire Road. To continue the loop turn right and walk among fields of dried-up sunflowers (as of December 2011) south for about 1.3 miles. At the next intersection you turn sharply right and soon join the junction with the North Grassland Trail. Turn left here, cross the wooden bridge, and retrace your steps to your car.
Take Las Virgenes/Malibu Canyon Road to the intersection with Mulholland Highway, 6.3 miles from the coast and 3.3 miles from the 101 Freeway in Lost Hills. Turn west at the light on Mulholland Highway and drive 0.15 mile to the trailhead on the right. There is street parking on the both sides of the road. Be especially careful when crossing the road here.
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