I joined the Sierra Club’s Wilderness Travel Course on a stair walk through Silver Lake. Twenty-one people and two dogs did stair walks Nos. 18 and 19, from the book, “Secret Stairs,” by Charles Fleming.
I have done these walks before and was glad to see the Sierra Club was using the stair walks as a way to train for backpacking in the mountains. In his book, Charles refers to stair walk #18 as the Music Box Loop, because the Music Box stairs were used in the 1932 Laurel and Hardy film where Laurel and Hardy had to deliver a piano to the top of the stairs. This 133 step staircase is an historical landmark and is indicated by the “Music Box” street sign at the bottom of the stairs. After the music box stairs we climbed another set of stairs consisting of 139 steps, at which the group walked at a good pace. There was a person at the end, known as the sweep, who made sure everyone stayed in front of her so no one gets left behind. A stair walker pointed out that a house we passed was once used for bootlegging.
It’s good to do stair walks with a group because sometimes you learn more about the history. I have done several Sierra Club hikes and stair walks and oftentimes I am toward the back of the group, but this time I wasn’t. My friend Lili was on the walk and she loves to take pictures of the flowers. I’m glad she likes taking all these pictures because then I am not the only one that is lagging behind. Towards the end, we walked on Garcia Walk, a narrow walk-street with bungalow houses and a lot of fruit trees. Lili commented that this reminded her of the Carribbean Islands, where she was born.
After completing stair walk #18, we did stair walk #19. This has the same starting and ending point as stair walk #18 and is on the other side of Sunset Blvd. The first time I did this walk I got lost and enlisted the help of an elderly man who lived in the area and joined me on the walk. He was of no help, and so we were both lost.
This time no one got lost and the leader did a good job of following the map in the book. There are quite a few Craftsman style homes in the area and apartment buildings with decorative windows and doorways.
We passed by an Indian style palace with elephant frescoes and banana trees, which once belonged to actress Lili Tomlin. I told myself I would like to live in this area. I loved this area the first time I saw it and I still love it.