Distance: 20.6 miles 63 stairways 1,033 up-steps Total Climb: 1,730 feet
Dan Gutierrez on 24 Sep 2016 | Pat and Elizabeth Schirmer, Evelyn Sanchez, Jane Fransella, Dave and Kristy Moorman on 18 Mar 2017 | Jeff Rozema, Maribel Sanchez, Matty Barriga, Matty Barriga, Teresa Cavazos on 29 Apr 2017 | Who will be next?
Cities/Regions: Long Beach [including: Naples, Belmont Shore, Bluff Park, Alamitos Beach, Downtown, Willmore], Ports of LA and LB, Wilmington, Harbor City
Route Features: This route has low elevation gain, and is not difficult, though it is a bit of a changeling. The first half is a fairly flat and pleasant beach city walk with 56 small to medium step-count stairways, with about 50/50 up/down climbing, almost all on stairways. The second half, still flat, is much more of a gray industrial tour of the northern parts of the ports of LB and LA, with some visits to older working class neighborhoods north and west of the ports, with only 9 stairways and 7 pedestrian over/under crossings.
Start Location: The start of segment A, also the start/end of the entire 308 mile LA Loop, is on Naples Island, at the Naples Fountain at the south end of Ravenna Dr, in the center of the loop, which is bus accessible via Long Beach Transit (LBT) Bus Line 121, which can be picked up by walking two blocks north to the corner of 2nd Street and Ravenna Dr.
Finish Location: Pacific Coast Highway and Western Ave, which is bus Accessible via Metro Bus Line 232 on Pacific Coast Highway.
Transit Connections: Finish to Start: From Pacific Coast Highway (PCH) and Western, take Metro Bus Line 232 on PCH to the downtown Long Beach Transit Mall at 1st and Long Beach Blvd at Bus Shelter A. Then walk across 1st street to Bus Shelter H, and take the LBT Bus Line 121 eastbound to 2nd St at Ravenna, then walk two blocks south on Ravenna Dr to reach the start at the Naples Fountain. An approach I often used when walking similar length, transit accessible Inman 300 segments alone, was to park my car near the finish, then take transit to the start, so I could walk “back” to my car.
DTLA to Start: If you are coming from Los Angeles or anywhere with rail connections, you can take the Metro Blue Line Train southbound to the 1st St Station in downtown LB, right across Long Beach Blvd from the transit mall Bus Shelters, and reach the start via LBT Bus Line 121 at Shelter H.
Finish to DTLA: From the stop on PCH, just east of Western Ave, take the Metro Bus Line 232 to the I-110 (Harbor) Freeway, and take the Metro Silver Line Bus back to downtown LA, since it goes all the way to Union Station and also drops off at 7th/Metro, so you have more flexibility in transitions to all the Metro rail lines (Blue, Red, Purple, Expo, and Gold). Or you can take the Metro Bus Line 232 to the DTLB transit mall, Bus Shelter A, and then take the Metro Blue Line Train, north to reach DTLA and other rail/bus lines.
Miles 0-5.5: From 2nd and Ravenna, the first mile is an 18 stairway tour through the wheel of 20 small stair-streets on Naples Island along the main canal, passing through the fountain before exiting on side streets to 2nd at Tivoli. From the N side of the Naples Fountain, walk around it counter clockwise and leave at the SE corner to on The Toledo, and stay on the northern sidewalk, taking it on a bend that right then left and heads toward one of the 5 small bridges to the central island. On the approach to the bridge stay on the left side sidewalk and don’t go over the bridge, and instead the left side walkway will take you to a small stairway leading up to the Eastern Toledo Bridge:
[NW Rivo Alto/Toledo E]
Climb the stairway and turn left, then cross the bridge, and go down a similar stairway to the left:
[NE Rivo Alto/Toledo E]
Go down the stairs leading to a similar walkway as the one on the opposite side of the bridge, and turn right to follow it. When you get to the end of the bridge, cross the street to your right and turn right again to get on the mirror image walkway, on the opposite side of the bridge, and climb a stairway you find to your right:
[SE Rivo Alto/Toledo E]
Turn left at the top, and cross the bridge, then look to your left for another stairway:
[W Rivo Alto/Toledo E]
At the bottom, go straight ahead, to continue along the canal, instead of turning right to parallel the bridge. Keep walking along the canal, which gradually bends to the right, and when you reach the next bridge, the Eastern Neopolitan Bridge, and its 4 stairways:
[Eastern Nepolitan Bridge 4 stairway set]
repeat the same 4 stairway circulation as before: climb stairs and go left to cross the bridge, descend stairs and go right, cross the street to your right, go right on the walkway, climb stairs, and go left to cross the bridge, descend stairs and go straight along the canal, bending to the right to reach the next bridge, the Western Neopolitan Bridge and its 4 stairways:
[Western Nepolitan Bridge 4 stairway set]
Repeat the same 4-stairway circulation, ending on the canal walkway, following its gentle rightward bend, until you come to the Western Toledo Bridge, also with 4 stairways:
[Western Toledo Bridge]
This is the last 4-stairway circulation you will do, just like the previous 3, and continue on the canal walkway, still curving to the right, and you will approach the final central island bridge, the Ravenna Bridge, and this time you will climb two of its 4 stairways (savind the last two for the return on Segment O to finish the LA Loop). Here is the first stairway:
[SW Rivo Alto/Ravenna]
Climb it, go left, cross the bridge, then the last canal stairway is to your left:
[NW Rivo Alto/Ravenna]
Go down the stairway, and go straight along the canal, back the way you came, but now on the outer walkway, instead of the inner, which bends to the left. About half way to the next bridge, there is a gap between houses, that is the beginning of a very narrow street called Riviera Walk. Turn right onto Rivera, and follow it, past mile 1, all the way till it ends into Tivoli Dr, and turn right onto the far side of Tivoli, and take it to 2nd Street, and turn left, following 2nd St over the bridge that leaves outer Naples Island for Long Beach proper. On the left at the far end of the bridge on the near corner is a white building with Spanish tile roof. This is a public restroom, with water fountains. The next 7/10ths of a mile is along 2nd street in Belmont Shore, a very restaurant rich, and touristy section, which makes for a great lunch stop, just not for this walk, since it’s way too early! When you reach Livingston, cross on a diagonal to the far side of Livingston, then walk up 2nd St for one block, passing mile 2, to Prospect, then cross it and come back to the north side of Livingston, turn right and follow the sidewalk to Ximeno Ave, turn left and cross in the crosswalk, to reach a down-going stairway in the median:
Go down the stairs, and cross the south side of Livingston, then enter the parallel frontage road, named Lois Lane (seriously, that’s really the name). Turn right on Lois Ln and continue until it meets with Division to the far left and Bennett to the near left. Continue southwest on Bennett, past 6 properties, and there is a shortcut between apartments to your right, that takes you across to Roswell Ave near its cul-de-sac end. If you can’t find the shortcut, continue on Benett to First, left on First, then right on Roswell to reach the end of the cul-de-sac. Here you will find a continuation of Roswell as a stairway leading back up to Livingston, and another Roswell stairway in the Livingston median above:
After climbing both stairways and carefully crossing both sides of Livingston in the process, turn left onto the far northern sidewalk. You might be wondering why these stairways exist. They used to serve the Red Car line that used to yun on the upper portion of Livingston, allowing people who lived below to walk up to the rail cars. Continue on Livingston, where the name changes to ocean as the street bends to the right to follow the coastline for 5 blocks to Loma Ave. Cross Loma and then turn left and cross Ocean to the ocean side at Bluff Park.
The end of mile 3 is reached at the south end of Bluff Park, where 36th place ends at a stairway in the park. We do not go down this stairway, as it leads to a long walk shoe filling trek in beach sand. Instead turn right and head along the walkway along the top of the bluff. The walkways provides superb vistas of the beach, oil drilling islands, the Queen Mary and downtown waterfront off in the distance to the north west. miles 3 through 5.5 are a zig-zag between the blufftop walkway to beach pedestrian walkway via a combination of 14 stairways, 2 of which are stair-streets, taking you all the way to the intersection of Shoreline and Ocean. Looking up and back the way you came you will see the majestic Villa Rivera, originally built in 1929 as a hotel, now serving as a retirement community. It was the 2nd tallest building in LA (and tallest private building), after the LA City Hall, until the mid-1950s.
Miles 5.5-10.7: After crossing Shoreline, we head into the downtown waterfront area of Long Beach the stair walking way, by traversing two stairways and a well disguised public walkway to reach the LB Performing Arts Center, with fountains, reflecting pool (AKA seagull bird bath) and views of the historic Breakers Hotel. From the performing arts center we will zig-zag on 5 stair-streets between Ocean and Seaside, then pick up a stair-street on Shoreline just past the 7 mile mark, as we pass through the Catalina Commuter Terminal toward the Queensway Bridge. The bridge has 4 stair-street connections, in mirror image north/south pairs, each of which are east/west mirror images as well.
We cross the bridge out and back traversing both sides of the bridge and all 4 stairways. The bridge has great views of the port and the construction of the replacement Gerald Desmond Bridge on the west side, and even better views of the Queen Mark and the Long Beach Waterfront on the east side.
After leaving the bridge, shortly after the 8 mile mark, you pass through Pierpoint Landing as a short rest/restroom/water/snack stop. Continuing northward past the Aquarium of the Pacific, the route traverses stairways on both sides of the pedestrian over-crossing of Shoreline that has a faux roller coaster design, in the area known as “The Pike”, which used to be an amusement park up until the early 1970s. Continuing further northward on Pacific Avenue, we reach the intersection with Broadway, which is the start of the lunch zone. The lunch zone continues along Broadway, passing the 9 mile mark, then turns northward on the promenade to its end at Harvey Milk Promenade Park, where the rescued LB Auditorium Mural (be sure to read the description plaques/markers), my favorite public art in Long Beach, now resides. We will take a 1 hour lunch, then continue from the Mural over two pedestrian over-crossings with entry and exit stairways concluding just past the 10 mile mark, walking another 1/2 mile past Drake Park, to the corner of Daisy and Anaheim, ending this portion of the route. Those doing half the route, and walk two blocks east to take a bus on Magnolia, leading back to the Long Beach Transit Mall.
Miles 10.7-15: Once on Anaheim, we have to walk just over 4 miles to reach Wilmington Waterfront Park. This 4 mile trek is loud, and not very pleasant, but is a necessary connection around the north side of the ports of LB and LA, to reach the stairways, bridges and tunnels later in the route. There are services in the last mile of this gritty urban segment. By mile 15 we will have turned from Anaheim south on Marine Avenue, and then west again on Harry Bridges Blvd (Bridges was a leader in the labor movement representing longshoremen in the early 1900s) to reach Wilmington Waterfront Park, concluding this segment.
Miles 15-20.8: Wilmington Waterfront Park has lovely stairways and bridges, especially the cable-stayed bridge at the west end of the park. It also has good restroom facilities, and water faucets for a fill-up! Take advantage of this, since there are few services in the last 5 miles. The 16 mile mark in the route is at the west exit of the park, and from there the route zig-zags between Figueroa St proper and Figueroa Place via three pedestrian under-crossings of the Harbor (I-110) freeway, passing the 17 mile mark, taking you to Pacific Coast Highway (PCH) at Figueroa Place. From there you cross PCH by using the stairway pair that serves the Metro Silver Line Bus Station, then head west on PCH to the 18 mile mark near the intersection with Dodge Ave, which we will use to do a lower traffic street route to meet Vermont at 253rd St. There is a small market at this corner, so if needed we can use it as a snack stop. We continue north on Vermont turning left and west on 245th St, and reach the 19 mile mark at Broadwell Ave, which we will take north onto Koleeta, then 243rd, to reach Normandie Ave via a tiny 7 step stair-street, and use the pedestrian over-crossing to reach the final stairway and stair-street of the day connecting Frampton Ave. down to Senator Ave. Once on Senator we follow it on a curving path southward passing the 20 mile mark, and at about 20.6 miles we arrive again at PCH. From there it’s a short walk west on PCH to the corner at Western and the Finish of this segment!
Congratulations, you have completed Segment A of the LA Loop!
Stairway Data Table
|A01||1||N/A||90803||NW Rivo Alto/Toledo E||13|
|A02||2||N/A||90803||NE Rivo Alto/Toledo E||13|
|A03||3||N/A||90803||SE Rivo Alto/Toledo E||13|
|A04||4||N/A||90803||SW Rivo Alto/Toledo E||13|
|A05||5||N/A||90803||NE Rivo Alto/Neapolitan E||12|
|A06||6||N/A||90803||SE Rivo Alto/Neapolitan E||12|
|A07||7||N/A||90803||SW Rivo Alto/Neapolitan E||12|
|A08||8||N/A||90803||NW Rivo Alto/Neapolitan E||12|
|A09||9||N/A||90803||NE Naples/Neapolitan W||11|
|A10||10||N/A||90803||SE Naples/Neapolitan W||11|
|A11||11||N/A||90803||SW Naples/Neapolitan W||12|
|A12||12||N/A||90803||NW Naples/Neapolitan W||11|
|A13||13||N/A||90803||SE Rivo Alto/Toledo W||12|
|A14||14||N/A||90803||SW Rivo Alto/Toledo W||12|
|A15||15||N/A||90803||NW Rivo Alto/Toledo W||12|
|A16||16||N/A||90803||NE Rivo Alto/Toledo W||12|
|A17||17||N/A||90803||SW Rivo Alto/Ravenna||10|
|A18||18||N/A||90803||NW Rivo Alto/Ravenna||10|
|A20||20||N/A||90803||Lower Roswell Ave||10|
|A21||21||N/A||90803||Upper Roswell Ave||14|
|A26||4||N/A||90802||Bixby Park NE||35|
|A27||5||N/A||90802||Bixby Park SE||32|
|A28||6||N/A||90802||Bixby Park SW||10|
|A39||13||N/A||90802||Pine/Ocean Center Building||16|
|A42||29||N/A||90802||Chestnut Side-Stair East||34|
|A43||30||N/A||90802||Chestnut Side-Stair West||33|
|A44||31||N/A||90802||Shoreline/Golden Shore Loop||25||7|
|A49||14||N/A||90802||Aquarium Way/Pike Bridge SW||36|
|A50||15||N/A||90802||Aquarium Way/Pike Bridge NE||36|
|A51||16||N/A||90802||Ferris Wheel/Pike WW||36|
|A54||37||N/A||90813||Maine POC of 6th||37||37|
|A55||38||N/A||90813||Maine POC of 7th||36||36|
|A56||18||N/A||90744||Lagoon Ave/WWP Path||25|
|A57||19||N/A||90744||Neptune Ave/WWP Path||33|
|A58||20||N/A||90744||McDonald Ave/WWP Path||33|
|A59||21||N/A||90744||Wilmington Bl/WWP Path||33|
|A60||22||N/A||90744||WWP Restroom to Deck||27|
|A61||39||N/A||90744||Fwy Bus POC of PCH||37||37|
|Total Stair Steps —>||1044||970|
|Total Stair-Streets —>||40|
|Tot Non Stair-Street Stairs >||23|