Conejo Valley Veterans Memorial at Conejo Creek Park North in Thousand Oaks

Veterans Memorial Fountain

Veterans Memorial Fountain

The Conejo Valley Veterans Memorial is a fountain memorial with two ponds located at Conejo Creek Park North, 1379 East Janss Road, Thousand Oaks

The inscription on the memorial says "We the people of the Conejo Valley proudly dedicate this memorial to our local veterans. Their courage and sacrifices serve as a shining example for future generations."

Conejo Creek Park is a local treasure. Completed in 1992, the park has a fitness trail, two playgrounds, a stream that meanders between two large ponds, three large picnic structures, over two dozen picnic tables and more. 

There is plenty of parking surrounding Conejo Creek Park, which is also a popular venue for community events and festivals.

Another great feature is the bridge that connects the park to three other community gathering spots - the Grant R. Brimhall Library, Thousand Oaks Teen Center and Goebel Senior Adult Center. When my kids were younger, we used to park at and visit the library, place our books in the car, then walk or scooter across the bridge to the park.

The bridge leading from the Thousand Oaks Library to Conejo Creek Park North.

The bridge leading from the Thousand Oaks Library to Conejo Creek Park North.

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One Dozen Physical Fitness Activities in the Conejo Valley That Cost Nothing

Conejo Valley Guide highlights thousands of things to do in the Conejo Valley, Greater Ventura County and surrounding areas, including carnivals, festivals, fairs, free concerts and movies and all sorts of places and things to see and do. Let's zero in on things to do that will help keep you fit right here in the Conejo Valley, at a total cost of $0.

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The Conejo Recreation & Park District maintains the Rabbit Flats Disc Golf Course at Thousand Oaks Community Park. This 9 acre, 18 basket course has rolling hills and will keep you moving. The only cost to you is your flying disc!

Rabbit Flats Disc Golf Course in Thousand Oaks

Rabbit Flats Disc Golf Course in Thousand Oaks

The Conejo Group Sierra Club and other local hiking groups often host hikes in the area.

There are several dozen free tennis courts open to the public available throughout the Conejo Valley.

The 33 acre Conejo Valley Botanic Garden is a peaceful, beautiful respite from the daily grind...and makes for a nice hike with panaromic views of the Conejo Valley as your reward.

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Local hiking surrounds us. Check out Oakbrook Regional Park and dozens of other local Conejo Valley trails at Wildwood Park, Los Robles Trail, Dos Vientos such as the Conejo Mountain/Edison Road trail.

We love stopping by the Borchard Park Labyrinth and Fitness Equipment Area in Newbury Park from time to time and moving our way through the entire labyrinth (my kids still call it a maze).

Borchard Park Labyrinth in Newbury Park

Borchard Park Labyrinth in Newbury Park

The Oaks Mall at 1.3 million square feet is so huge that you can get a great workout in just walking from end to end or around the perimeter...though you may be tempted to consume the calories you burned off at some of the great eateries inside.

Roadrunner Sports in Newbury Park hosts Thursday Adventure Runs on the 3rd Thursday of each month in March through November! Sign up, show up, run and have fun.

There are over 4 dozen Thousand Oaks parks maintained by the Conejo Recreation and Park District and another 11 in Agoura/Westlake Village.

Try the Fitness Trail at Pepper Tree Park in Newbury Park; a .83 mile trail with fitness activities every 1/8th of a mile.

Westlake Lake is a great venue for walking, running and cycling year-round. There is roughly a 4 to 5 mile scenic loop around the lake and surrounding areas that you and your family will enjoy.

Gardens of the World Thousand Oaks

Gardens of the World Thousand Oaks

Gardens of the World across from the Civic Arts Plaza is 4 1/2 acres of immaculate, serene gardens to walk through and enjoy Tuesday through Sunday. Perhaps not the place for a "power" walk and definitely not a run. You will enjoy it, regardless.

Last but not least, the National Park Service brings us over 154,000 acres of open space in the Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area, including local Conejo Valley open space at Paramount Ranch, Cheeseboro and Palo Comado Canyons in Agoura, Rancho Sierra Vista/Point Mugu State Park and more.

Fun, Games and Exercise at Westlake Village Community Park

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Westlake Village Community Park is a spectacular 19 acre site built atop a hill at 31107 Thousand Oaks Boulevard, just west of Lindero Canyon.

There are baseball fields, soccer fields, the 55,000 square foot Triunfo YMCA (which will open at some point in the future), playground, exercise circuit, skate park and plenty of parking.

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The HealthBeat Outdoor Fitness System for ages 13+ is designed for beginner, intermediate and advanced users looking for an outdoor workout.  Kind of an interesting assortment of workout stations that can be a fun addition to your workout routine.

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Unfinished Triunfo YMCA in the background.

Unfinished Triunfo YMCA in the background.

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Instructions on proper use of each station is at playlsi.com/hb. More on the park at www.wlv.org/Facilities/Facility/Details/Westlake-Village-Community-Park-12.

Sick With the Flu? Here's What to Do!

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Sick With Flu? Know What to Do! (courtesy of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)

Influenza (or flu) is a contagious respiratory illness caused by flu viruses. Most people with flu have mild illness and do not need medical care or antiviral drugs. If you get flu symptoms, in most cases, you should stay home and avoid contact with others except to get medical care.

Know the symptoms of Flu

Flu viruses can cause mild to severe illness, and at times can lead to death. The flu is different from a cold. The flu usually comes on suddenly. People who have flu often feel some or all of these symptoms: Fever* or feeling feverish/chills, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, muscle or body aches, headaches, fatigue (tiredness). Some people may have vomiting and diarrhea. This is more common in children.

* It’s important to note that not everyone with flu will have a fever.

Take Antiviral Drugs if your doctor prescribes them!

Antiviral drugs can be used to treat flu illness. Antiviral drugs can make illness milder and shorten the time you are sick. They also can prevent serious flu complications.

CDC recommends that antiviral drugs be used early to treat people who are very sick with the flu and people who get flu symptoms who are at high risk of serious flu complications, either because of their age or because they have a high risk medical condition.

Stay Home When Sick

When you are sick, limit contact with others as much as possible. Remember to cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze, and throw tissues in the trash after you use them. Stay home for at least 24 hours after your fever is gone except to get medical care or for other necessities.

*Your fever should be gone for 24 hours without the use of a fever-reducing medicine before resuming normal activities.

Learn more at www.cdc.gov/flu/takingcare.htm.

Britney Spears Posts Photo of Herself and Boyfriend at Popular Thousand Oaks Trail

Yesterday around 1:30pm, Britney Spears Tweeted a photo of herself and boyfriend Sam Asghari on a popular local trail destination in the Conejo Valley. This particular location tends to get overwhelmed with traffic, which causes problems for local residents. But there are dozens and dozens of outstanding trails in the Conejo Valley and surrounding areas compiled on THIS PAGE. Britney, if you are following this site, I challenge you to post a photo of yourself on five other Conejo Valley trails, perhaps including Angel Vista Peak, Space Mountain on the Los Robles Trail, the Lang Ranch/Woodridge Open Space, Sunset Hills Trail and the Hillcrest Open Space.

Britney mentioned in her Tweet that she has been with fitness model and aspiring actor Asghari for over a year. We can almost confirm that based on her Tweet 11 months ago showing the two of them in that same overly popular local hiking area.

And Asghari posted the same photo on his Instagram page, where he currently has 519K followers.

Ray Miller Trail at Pt. Mugu State Park in Malibu

Views from the Ray Miller Trail at Pt. Mugu State Park.

Views from the Ray Miller Trail at Pt. Mugu State Park.

The Ray Miller Trail is located in the La Jolla Canyon section of Pt. Mugu State Park in Malibu. The trail is named after Ray Miller, "Guardian of the Canyon," who was the first official California State Park Camp Host, having volunteered from March 1, 1979 until his death on April 28, 1989.

Monument to Ray Miller on boulder in the La Jolla Canyon Day Use parking lot.

Monument to Ray Miller on boulder in the La Jolla Canyon Day Use parking lot.

On its own, the trail is 2.7 miles each direction, taking you from the base of La Jolla Canyon to an overlook of the Pacific Ocean that provides sweeping views towards Mugu Rock on the west and Sycamore Cove on the east.

La Jolla Canyon sign in need of repair in September 2015.

La Jolla Canyon sign in need of repair in September 2015.

The trail looks harder than what it really is in my opinion. The elevation gain is close to 1,000 feet over the 2.7 miles, but none of the climbs are particularly steep.  The trail zigs and zags its way up as you take in views below. You will love this trail. Many people I know say this is their favorite trail!

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Single track trail all the way up, but the surface is pretty good overall. Can get slippery when wet, however.

Single track trail all the way up, but the surface is pretty good overall. Can get slippery when wet, however.

After you reach the overlook, you continue on until you reach the Overlook Fire Road at the end of the trail (there's a sign). At that point, you can turn back or you can continue on the fire road going either north towards the La Jolla Valley Fire Road, or south towards Sycamore Campground.

Views are in abundance most of the way up this trail. This photo was taken in September 2015, in the midst of a four-year drought. It will green up in the winter.

Views are in abundance most of the way up this trail. This photo was taken in September 2015, in the midst of a four-year drought. It will green up in the winter.

This is the sign indicating you're reached the endpoint of the Ray Miller Trail, where it intersects with the Overlook Fire Road.  Explore the road going both directions if you have time (and are carrying water), as there's plenty of views in all directions.

This is the sign indicating you're reached the endpoint of the Ray Miller Trail, where it intersects with the Overlook Fire Road.  Explore the road going both directions if you have time (and are carrying water), as there's plenty of views in all directions.

At the bottom of La Jolla Canyon is a group campground.  

La Jolla Canyon is located at 9000 Pacific Coast Highway in Malibu. Take PCH south/southeast from Los Posas Road in Camarillo. Takes about 30 minutes to get there from the center of Thousand Oaks via either the 101 or via Potrero Road in Newbury Park. It is located just east of Mugu Rock and near Thornhill Broome Beach.

You can park in the La Jolla Day Use Parking Lot (as of September 2015, $8 for day use; $7 for seniors), or you can park on PCH and walk in. Dogs and bikes are not allowed on this trail, though horses are. It can get pretty hot up here in the summer, so be careful and bring plenty of water and wear sunscreen. 

The La Jolla Canyon Trail, accessed adjacent to the Ray Miller Trail, has been closed since January 2015 due to mudslides and rain damage. However, you can access the beautiful La Jolla Valley from the the La Jolla Valley Fire Road.

More information about Pt. Mugu State Park

Other local hikes and trails

Thousand Oaks Community Park Has Several Unique Features Worth Exploring

Thousand Oaks Community Park, located at 2525 N. Moorpark Road, just north of Thousand Oaks High School, has something for everyone. This large, park is home to the Thousand Oaks Community Center, a hub for year-round events and activities for all ages. The center has a full-size gym, several fully-enclosed racquetball courts and other great features. More info at www.crpd.org/parkfac/1koaks.

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If you have young kids, probably the most popular feature of this park is the playground and adjoining "Ant Hill." The Ant Hill is a unique, small man-made hill covered with artificial grass that is a fun play slide area for the kids. Bring a piece of cardboard and enjoy the ride.

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This nearly 36 acre park also has soccer and softball fields, four tennis courts, one sand volleyball court and plenty of picnic area. Both the park and the community center are popular for birthday parties. On the east side of the park is another unique feature you won't find in other parks, the Rabbit Flats Disc Golf Course. I connected with a group enjoying a Saturday round on this nine acre course and learned that there are specialized discs for disc golf.

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The course is free to the public. I'd recommend a walk-through first to explore. Just be mindful of flying discs!