Climbing Los Angeles One Step at a Time

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Walk #38 :Universal City - Happy Trails

Distance: 2.2 miles
Steps: 229
Difficulty: 2.5
"This is a curious hillside walk, in the shadows of Mullholland Drive, which overlooks Universal Studios and the San Fernando Valley. It features two staircases, some architectural wonders, and a network of paved, interlacing 'trails.'" Taken from Secret Stairs by Charles Fleming.
From left: Willie, Enrique, Jessica, Mark, Ines, and Charles

The end is near.... The end of my blog that is. This walk marked our 33rd walk leaving only 9 to check off the list. We started in May, 2009 and it's really exciting to see that our goal is within reach. Many have asked what I'm going to do after we complete the 42 walks and I know that we will repeat our favorite ones and find other ways to enjoy the city. Lately we have had several new walkers and as I've said before, all are welcome! This week our friend Mark joined us for the first time. Mark is a costume designer and you can see his creations in numerous Hollywood productions. We are glad he came along. Of course there was our standby (Willie) and the Intrepid Interpreters (Ines, Jessica, Enrique, myself). We began this walk at Cahuenga Boulevard and Barham Boulevard. The 101 Freeway runs through here and Barham is a busy thoroughfare to get to/from Burbank to Hollywood. It is also right next to Universal Studios. At the same time, within minutes you can lose yourself as we did on this peaceful Sunday stroll in the Hollywood Hills.
We quickly left the bustle of the city and found ourselves in a hilly, green, and quiet hillside neighborhood. Just minutes away is the famous Hollywood Bowl. After a brief uphill stroll we found our first staircase, only 146 steps.
While this is an upscale neighborhood it does not come across as one as would Beverly Hills, or Bel Air with gated front yards. We saw a few huge homes but most of them seemed to fit in well and it did feel like a real neighborhood.

If you look closely you can see the corner of the Hollywood sign.
The 'Wings' house.

Wilie, Charles, and Mark.

A view of the San Fernando Valley with Universal Studios in the foreground.
It's not me; the mirror makes me look big!
This 1927 mosaic wonder was quite a feast for the eyes.

The Interpreters: Ines, Enrique, Jessica, me.
Cantilevered homes are not rare in these hills but these do stand out!

Our second and final staircase - 83 steps took us down to Oakcrest Drive.
Mark & Charles, long-time friends.

Enrique in front of the Firehouse.
We found ourselves back on busy Cahuenga for a short block before heading up into the hills for the last part of the walk.

We ended our walk with a satisfying breakfast a the Break Room Cafe on Ventura Blvd.
Feel free to join me as I discover hidden parts of Los Angeles and tackle the remaining 9 stair walks.
Steps walked to date: 17,451
Follow me on Twitter: @ClimbingLA

1 comment:

  1. I can't believe there are so few walks left! Maybe Charles Fleming will write another book that we can blog about. This neighborhood was so quirky but I loved it. The cantilevered houses were so interesting!