Columbia City to Beacon Hill
We squeezed in this walk on Sunday morning before the Seahawks game... because, priorities.
I planned this route to start and end at Link light rail stations to make things easier. So we drove to Beacon Hill, parked near the station, and rode the train two stops to Columbia City. On thing was immediately clear.
The beginning of this walk was pretty downbeat... just walking on and on through the neighborhood along quiet streets. Then we came to our first set of stairs, at Ferdinand and 51st.
|Ferdinand Stairs, 68 steps|
|Private walkway? Hard to tell.|
|Lower Ferdinand Stairs, 171 stairs (??)|
And when we reached the bottom, we were only a block or so from this:
|view south to Seward Park|
Lake Washington, all pretty in the morning light.
We walked along the lake. It was ALL I COULD DO to not write "OR WE WILL TURN THEM TO STONE" on this post. Wil moved me along quickly so my inner vandal couldn't get out.
All too soon we turned up Genessee from the lake, and then headed west along it for several blocks, until we hit Rainier Avenue South. We shifted north by a block, and then went up the Adams Stairway.
|Adams Stairway, 182 stairs|
As we approached, there were a bunch of teenagers sitting on the steps. They saw us and essentially scampered off, leaving their "Swisher Sweets" packets behind them. Oh, the kids today.
Obligatory "pedestrian street sign" photo...
The Adams Stairway was surprisingly long... crossing alleys / narrow streets as we went up. Here's the view back down from the top:
|Adams Stairway, from the top|
We then reached the Lilac Stairs ... which started out feeling like a private path, until I noticed the telltale streetcar rails ... this time painted a stylish black.
|how cute is that pedestrian detour sign???|
It's nice to see that the city is still maintaining -- and improving -- these stairways. They even posted a handy map of the detour for pedestrians. So we went a block south, down a flight of stairs, and then came back up the block to the bottom of the closed section.
We re-crossed Rainier Avenue, then climbed a hill to get on 37th ... sadly missing the opportunity to climb up these pretty new stairs, the Charlestown Hillclimb.
|Charlestown Hillclimb stairs -- pretty!|
|Horton Stairway, 100 stairs|
And partway down, there's a waterfall ... or, at least, a course for a waterfall. (Hey, I'm currently happy to have had a dry summer!)
|You don't see a lot of gargoyles here in Seattle ... would love to see this spouting water!|
There are 25 flattish ones covering the first block, and then a very clean set of 110 more... which you can see in the distance of this photo:
|Hanford Stairway, 25 steps lower, 110 steps upper|
|top landing of the Hanford Stairway|
These little penguins are pressed into the concrete on the sidewalk ... along with what we *think* was a childish drawing of an anatomically correct heart. Yeah, I knew I should have gotten a picture or you wouldn't believe me.
(While looking for a picture ... or any information ... about these penguins and hearts on the sidewalk, I came across this very cool site Beacon Hill Public Art. It sadly didn't have any information about them, but had lots of pictures and locations of public art around their neighborhood.)
We assumed that perhaps the penguins and hearts are related to Kimball Elementary School, with its cute mural sign ... but I still can't find any information about them. So it will remain a mystery. An undocumented mystery...
We popped back out on Beacon Avenue South, admiring the cute restaurants and bars and more public art:
|I think I'd like to do something similar in my neighborhood!|