Super Secret Stairwalk with Charles Fleming

Today, June 5, author Charles Fleming led his monthly stair walk, taking approximately 55 people and 4 dogs to stairs that are not in his book, “Secret Stairs, a Walking Guide to the Historic Staircases of Los Angeles.”   He recently discovered the stairs when he was looking at a map that has a right of way and trails on it.  He wondered if there might be some stairs in that area and sure enough, there are.  Charles said he likes to discover new stairs and to take his fans to places that are not in the book.  One house we passed by had their own metal track going up the hill which is used to haul groceries and other heavy items up the hill.

Track used to haul groceries

Super secret stairs

This is actually the first time I’ve been on a stair walk that is not in his book.  In his book, Charles asks people to e-mail him if they discover stairs that are not in the book.  One of the stair walkers told me he gave Charles a map from the County Assessors’ office and told him to check it out since he thought there might be some new hidden stairs. This is probably the map Charles was referring to earlier.

One set of stairs is overgrown with brush but beautiful nonetheless. We also walked some paths and trails with beautiful panoramic views of Echo Park, surrounding areas and hillsides with a large variety of plants and bushes. 

Side of hill

Charles helping a man and his dog down the ladder

One section had a small metal ladder with 7 steps which Charles helped the stair walkers down.

This was a very interesting walk and I met interesting people.  For one, I was one of several people interviewed by Jacob Soboroff of KCET TV in Los Angeles.

Jacob Soboroff of KCET

Of course I mentioned my blog site more than once.

Marino Pascal, a local resident,  noticed us walking and joined up with us.  He showed us his home and his tree house.  He has lived in this area since 1994 and didn’t know about the stairs, mentioned above, which Charles had discovered, and refers to as “the super secret stairs.”

Marino and his tree house

View from deck of Marino's tree house

It’s always exciting to meet new people and introduce them to something new, especially if that something new is in the area where they live.

Marino and me on the patio of his home

I look forward to Charles’s next stair walk in July and hopefully KCET will air my interview and mention my blog.

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5 Responses to Super Secret Stairwalk with Charles Fleming

  1. Kama and David Rowley says:

    Karen, That was an incredible walk and we loved meeting with you and what you are doing to help our public stairways. The Stair-ladder was the only public stair-ladder I have ever seen and I have walked these stairs for almost 50 years growing up in Silverlake and Los Feliz. Great time we should have sung Happy Birthday to Marino as he told me it was his birthday and he was even surprised by the Secret Stairways Chas showed us. I guess we could all go back and do it latter as I am sure the ouzo will be flowing and food incredible. His private shortcut stairway route used to be very common with one on my cull de sac in Los Feliz now like most closed due to private property rights. David and Kama

  2. Marino says:

    Running into you best birthday present ever!

  3. Karen, this was the very first stair walk that I ever did with Charles. I think it’s funny that I’m in one of your photos even though I hadn’t met you yet. I’m glad we’ve become friends and stair walking buddies.

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