O O Z S e E h t L f E site o G N A S O L OLD
N ARE served a A s the f r o m i t s
foundi ng in 19 12 to 19 when th 65 e LO S ANG ELES Z OO moved
to its curren t locat io
about t wo mil es
Many o f the W grottos, and oth A er
NORTH OF WH E
L L S you ,
by COU N
NTLY S TAND
in the 1930
T Y REL
IEF wor kers a n d
WORKS PROGRE SS A (WPA) C DMINISTRATION R
e r e H Lived
and the sounds of their
i l l
t h i s
n y o
Although these historic enclosures
are no longer
appropriate for housing
ANIMALS, they can be
memories of family visits
Griffith Park Zoo, as well as an
to better understand developments in the
RESPECT the BUILDINGS,
w a l l s ,
a n d
h a b i t a t s
The old zoo at Griffith park is a strong mixture of eerie and cool. Itâ€™s the kind of place that has been abandoned by time and transformed into a site of empty rusting cages: some locked, some open, some broken. Smells of overgrown weeds and grass fight to overpower scents of dried piss soaking up the concrete corners. One imagines what once was that will never be again; and I am pierced by a chill of melancholia for what this place has become. Once inhabited by animal life, surrounded by echoes of human life, childrenâ€™s laughter, cotton candy, peanuts, music; is now forgotten, grim, used up and left to rot, tucked away behind bushes and robust trees. One of the most consuming of human fears is to one day be forgotten, left to die alone, unloved; and visiting the old zoo brings up these fears with a dose of acceptance for the natural impermanence of things. It is this very conundrum of nostalgia, melancholy and bitter (though graceful) acceptance, that makes the old zoo so cool to revisit. It is pleasantly distracting if you are running through it on your morning workout. Astonishingly striking if you are doing a photo shoot on its grounds; and creepily romantic to come with a date; bringing up interesting topics of conversation inspired by the bizarre.
I was just not impressed.
The trail is not bad at all, but the view is of the valley.
Snore. Also, there is like
2 SECONDS of
ZOO ACTION I set my expectations too high.
w o n â€™ t
b a c k .
ght to u o f e v a L must h TY COUNCI
Okayo, me cool bloke on the CI s
is place keep th . ALIVE
Who doesn’t love to spend a day c
900s? e early 1 th m o d zoo fr TIME... andone up ANY e m at an ab n ig S
Enter Griffith Park and head towards the Merry-Go-Round. There’s a sign at the second 3-way stop which directs you up the hill toward the golf courses. The sign also says “Old Zoo Picnic Area.” Go up the hill, over the bumpy cross-walk at the “Turf Management Station” parking lot (the giant playground area should be on your left). Stay straight as you approach the curve in the road, putting you on a smaller, rougher road, with cars parked along the grassy area. Follow that road as far up as you can. Parking can be tough on the weekends. At the top of the parking area, there’s a long walkway and a separate stairway hidden amongst the trees. Find these and you’ll be on your way into the mystifying, hidden area of Griffith Park that once housed wild animals from around the world...