While this walk was short on steps it was long on memories! This part of Los Angeles (Atwater Village/Los Feliz) is quite near my home in Burbank and Charles lives only blocks from the start/finish of this walk. We have walked along the riverbank and surrounding areas countless times and it is great to see this neighborhood included in Secret Stairs.
Many will recognize the river from television shows and especially from car chases further down the river where the water stream narrows. I like to remember the river as an urban habitat where plants and wildlife coexist with bike paths, walking paths, horses, and the homeless. It amazes me how so few people take advantage of what this area has to offer. The river was paved in the late 1930s after a series of disastrous floods.
If you go down to the water's edge it's really nice to see a live river and not just a flood control channel. Just stay away when it rains!
For several miles Interstate 5 parallels the LA River. When I was a kid I remember that all the storm drain covers were painted to look like cats. Very few of these remain painted that way.
We headed south and went to the water's edge. The trees grow IN the river and we saw numerous ducks and birds and of course, garbage. When it rains and the water level rises it is quite disturbing to see plastic bags, clothes, and all sorts of trash stuck in the foliage. We should all remember to NEVER use the storm drains on our streets as garbage cans!! It will end up in our river.
This 'island' appears to serve as a home for some homeless people. You see their encampments under the bridges, on these islands, and between the bike path and the freeway.
After crossing the bridge we walked down this set of stairs and ended up on Riverside Drive approaching Griffith Park.
There were 2 parts to the sign pictured below. The top part reads 'Hotel' and lies on the ground behind this one. I suspect it read 'Hotel Californian' and graced the top of an old Los Angeles apartment house.
Just over the hedges is busy Interstate 5! Behind the tennis courts lies a short footpath which took us to a pedestrian bridge spanning I-5.
From this entrance on Los Feliz Blvd. you can access the eastern side of the river. We like to walk on this side towards the Colorado Blvd. overpass as there are multiple horse stables. One can often see horses with their heads peeking out and riders enjoying the path. I'm surprised by how few people use this side of the riverbank.
At the end of the walk (back on Los Feliz Blvd.) there are some options...
It was too early to grab a drink at Bigfoot Lodge so we crossed the street and had breakfast at EAT (Loz Feliz Coffee Shop). It's a quaint little eatery with a back porch that faces the 9-hole golf course and was a perfect way to end our Memorial Day walk!
Feel free to join me as I discover hidden parts of Los Angeles and tackle the remaining 35 stair walks.
Steps walked to date: 3,130
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