The Great Los Angeles Walk hiked down Colorado Blvd. in Pasadena and Figueroa St. in Highland Park (among other streets before and after) for its 14th edition, and hundreds of passionate Angelenos -- not to mention dozens more from out of town and even out of state -- hiked from Arcadia County Park to the Grand Park, in front of Los Angeles City Hall, on Saturday, Nov. 23.
This year's Walk eschewed our normal downtown-to-the-ocean route to try something a bit different. For many, this was their first time walking the length of Pasadena, or even seeing Highland Park. The sights were new and interesting, and we got to see it all up close.
Monarch Donuts in Arcadia served up goodies for Walkers before the morning (including what have been called the greatest apple fritters in L.A. — sorry to those who got there late and the treats were already sold out!)Plenty of returnees, and a lot of newbies, were on hand to once again celebrate community and explore their city on foot.
We began with a quick pep talk from Modern Hiker founder Casey Schreiner, who discussed the joys of walking and exploring Southern California on foot. From there, after I gave a few housekeeping notes, we were off.
The walk passed the Santa Anita race track and mall, and saw high school marching bands preparing for a competition set to be held there later that morning. We then crossed Baldwin Ave. to the Los Angeles County Arboretum, decked out for the holidays, where some additional walkers were waiting for us.
We then walked under the 210 and over to Foothill, where we marveled at some of the mansions (both old and new) and large property lots, before swinging back down to Michillinda and the Pasadena City Limits. We picked up even more Walkers, then headed west on Colorado Blvd. through Pasadena.
Colorado boasted classic Route 66 hotels (this is part of the Mother Road, after all), as well as Pasadena City College, several record stores (which I must visit), and historic architecture. Then came Old Town Pasadena, where Walkers split off into various restaurants for lunch. Resuming (and passing by spectator stands, already being constructed for the Rose Parade), we then gathered at Defenders Park, and walked the Colorado Blvd. bridge (over the Arroyo Seco).
On the other side was a bit more Pasadena, before hitting the Los Angeles City Limits and Eagle Rock. We then swung south on Figueroa, and walked down through Highland Park, and then over the L.A. River to downtown and Chinatown. We ended in Grand Park, overlooking the City Hall, and then celebrated afterward at downtown's Redwood Bar & Grill.
Thanks to everyone who made all of the trek, some of it, or even just helped give rides to their friends. Here are some highlights from the day:
Monarch Donuts' Jonathan, slinging them apple fritters and more. Yum!
Memorial fountain at the Arcadia County Park
The crowd gathers
Modern Hiker's Casey Schreiner speaks, with me in the background
And they're off!
"Sidewalk Closed?" I don't think so.
High school bands prepare to battle in the Santa Anita parking lot
Passing the track
Why, yes we did.
Old train depot at the Arboretum
Meeting at the Arboretum — festive peacock in back
The sign of where we've been
If you're not going to walk, at least go in style
Classic motel sign on Route 66
An amazing number of dojos, strength training centers and gyms in East Pasadena
Space age seating
Thanks, but we'll enjoy our Walk down Route 66 instead
Classic sign for the Colorado Cocktails
Need to return here.
The Whistle Stop trains
Get your kicks
Seal of approval
Pasadena City College
Perhaps our most unusual encounter: People teaching CPR on a street corner
Our barefoot friend from Santa Fe is back!
Books along the way
SoCal air quality was great on Saturday, despite this warning
The Big Bang Theory Way
Lunch at California Chutney
The holidays are indeed under way
All the Feels
Getting ready for the Rose Parade
Cooling down those paws
On the Colorado Blvd. bridge
And climbing down from the bridge
View of the Arroyo Seco
Birthplace of the Cheeseburger!
The Eagle Rock
Tai Chi on the walk
Spotted in Highland Park
The Chicken Boy!
An actual pay phone?
Elsa's having a great weekend
The Three Stooges of Highland Park
Charlie Brown's tree makes it to Highland Park
At the San Fernando Rd. roundabout
Crossing the L.A. River
At Elysian Park
A random bride on the route
Just some of the finishers (photo by Cheryl Weissend)
Photo via Erin Zukowski