***A second hike in May 2015 will lead me here .. I am so excited!!!!***
Malibu Creek State Park is proud to be home to the outdoor set of television's legendary program M*A*S*H. The site still draws visitors from all over the world decades after the show left the air.
The park is the former location ranch of 20th Century Fox studios who owned the land between 1946 and 1974. They shot many films and television programs here including M*A*S*H between 1972 - 1983.
Shooting M*A*S*H on location was much like a real M.A.S.H. unit would operate. Electricity was sourced from powerful generators, water came from tanker trucks and bathroom facilities weren't much more than porta-potties such as those commonly found at construction sites (although they were definately a step up from the latrines on the show). On a M*A*S*H 30th Anniversary special that aired in 2002, Alan Alda (“Hawkeye”) observed that shooting at the Fox Ranch added to the realism of a show set amongst daily hardship and making do in minimal conditions.
Over the years, Nature began to reclaim the famous set. An ambulance left behind by the studio became so shrouded in wild bush that it could not be seen by visitors standing just by a few feet away.
Recognizing that M*A*S*H is still beloved worldwide and that visitors come from from all over America, Europe and Asia to see the set, in 2007, State Parks officials authorized an environmentally sensitive, partial restoration of the set that cleared some of the overgrowth and made it easier to see where tents and buildings were placed during the show. The vehicle road to the helipad was restored and is now the shortest hiking trail in the park.
Now on display are a recreation of the iconic signpost, and informational panels with photographs from the show.
M*A*S*H was almost cancelled after its first season due to low ratings. It became very popular in season two.
Shade at the Set!! There is finally shade at the M*A*S*H site for the first time so you can eat in comfort where the mess tent was on the TV series. Enjoy!