The tranquil Arroyo Seco has become a popular recreation favorite for nature lovers and sports enthusiasts all over Los Angeles and Southern California. Geographically, the Arroyo Seco, literally “dry creek” is the most prominent feature of the northeast Los Angeles landscape. The great, long canyon of the Arroyo Seco extends from the foot of the San Gabriel mountains north of Pasadena, southward along the western edge of South Pasadena. It skirts the Garvanza district, and continues south through Highland Park until it joins the Los Angeles river not far from Elysian Park.
The Arroyo Seco, as with other parts of the City of Pasadena, are sitting within a great gorge which has been formed by the depositions of eroded bedrock that has washed out of the San Gabriel Mountains for thousands of years and then deposited by various streams and brooks. Significant portions of the Arroyo Seco watershed are protected open space, ranging from the National Forest to golf courses to passive nature parks. There is almost a continuous stretch of open space in the Arroyo Seco from the Angeles National Forest in the San Gabriel Mountains to its confluence with the Los Angeles River. This is the Most Celebrated Canyon in Southern California.