When I first started Modern Hiker, the primary hiking/blogging joke I heard (yes, there’s at least one) was that I should devote a section of the site for walks around the urban areas of L.A.

Hilarious, right?

After a while, I actually came around to like the idea – there’s a lot of history buried in the L.A. sprawl that’s worth learning about – but my free time is limited, and I need me some forests on the weekends, you know? Lucky for everyone else, author, blogger, and staircase-enthusiast Dan Koeppel is picking up the slack in a BIG way.

The project is called The Big Parade, and Dan describes it as “a community participation walk/event/performance/whatever,” that winds its way 40+ miles through cultural, historical, and strange landmarks in Los Angeles and Griffith Park over two days, including 130 staircases, a paddleboat trip across Echo Lake, an urban campout, and a marching band.

How could you NOT be interested in that?

The Big Parade is on the weekend of July 18-19, and Dan encourages anyone and everyone to join for as little or as much of the route as you want. The Parade’s web site has a developing Google Maps page for the parade route, along with helpful markers. If you’re just interested in joining for a few blocks, be sure to sign up for their Twitter page so you can keep track of where the group is.

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Image from the 2007 Great L.A. Walk, another hopefully annual urban walking project.

Founder and Editor-in-Chief of Modern Hiker, Author of "Day Hiking Los Angeles," Walking Meditator, Native Plant Enthusiast.





10 Comments

Big Parade LA: Walkin’ the City of Angels » the wanderkind Apr 30, 2010 20:04

[...] forward more than a year later, and Curbed LA and Modern Hiker are both promoting the Big Parade LA, a two-day, 40-mile walk through the city of Los Angeles, [...]

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Quick Reminder: The Big Parade is Tomorrow! | Modern Hiker Jul 17, 2009 13:07

[...] hike through Los Angeles known as the Big Parade is [...]

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Franklin Avenue Jul 16, 2009 11:07

The Great Los Angeles Walk is indeed an annual event; we'll be throwing the fourth one this fall, as always, on the Saturday before Thanksgiving. Hope everyone can join in! www.greatlawalk.com

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Jul 13, 2009 19:07

Hey Dan,

I'll be out of town but would love to do the trek. I do some good GPS analysis so I'll contact you about measuring the route.

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Dan Koeppel Jul 10, 2009 08:07

Correct. The elevation gain includes all the climbing, not just steps.

That said, our GPS and barometric altitude readings are often wildly variable. I don't know why, it isn't my field of expertise, which means that somebody who is smarter about this stuff - actually, everybody who is smarter about this stuff - needs to come with us next weekend and straighten out our numbers!'

- Dan (Big Parade organizer)

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Jul 8, 2009 17:07

good point about the hills, that could well be it.

I found his route directions so I might try this out at some point.

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Modern Hiker Jul 8, 2009 08:07In reply to: Zé

maybe the 7445 number is the total elevation gain for the entire route? I know some parts of the planned parade route just ascend up regular ol' hills and trails, too.

Or, it could be the total overall elevation change on the route, and not just the difference between the lowest and highest point?

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Jul 8, 2009 07:07

I remember reading that LA Times article last year and thinking: "How in the world is he getting 7,445 ft elevation gain from 4,182 steps?"

Are these steps 20 ft high each?

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Raphael Jul 7, 2009 17:07

Yeah, I was going to say that this reminds me of Great Walk LA.

Somebody last year (not GWLA) did a similar walk down Western, from Griffith Park to Palos Verdes.

I'd like to do one in my hood (LBC)! Maybe on Long Beach Boulevard?


Or maybe hiking the length of the LA River, from Sepulveda Dam to the Queen Mary?

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Laura Jul 7, 2009 15:07

I find this to be a very intriguing idea, but I'm not sure I can do it that weekend...

BTW, that photo is of the 2007 Great L.A. Walk, when we started at the Coca-Cola building on Pico. Last year they started at Union Station.

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