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.

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