Segment O

Segment O – Watts to Naples Island – View Google MapView Photos

Distance: 20.9 miles     18 stairways     445 up-steps     Total Climb: 705 feet

Cities/Regions:  Watts, Compton, Gateway Towne Center, Sutter, Los Cerritos, Memorial Heights, Sunrise, Signal Hill, Zaferia, East Side, Colorado Lagoon, Naples.

Facebook Event on 7 May 2017

Official Finishers:

Dan Gutierrez, Pat and Elizabeth Schirmer, Dave and Kristy Moorman, on 5 May 2017 | John and Olivia Oshimo on 7 Apr 2018 | Jeff Rozema, James Peterson, Alfredo Salgado, Kathy Lopez, Maribel Sanchez, Luis Prado, Maria Casillas, Teresa Cavazos on 8 Sep 2018 | Gaelle Gralnek on 12 Nov 2018 | Lisa Digger on 22 Nov 2018 | Evelyn Sanchez, Marla Stephenson Thornton on 5 Jan 2019 | Jane Fransella on 31 Mar 2019 | Who will be next?

Route Features: Segment O is a flat urban route that mostly follows two rail lines, first the Metro Blue Line (the former Red Car Long Beach Line), and then the Long Beach Greenbelt (the former Red Car Newport Line). The first part is more urban and industrial, with plenty of parks and other services, whereas the second half is much more suburban, and across multiple parks along the Long Beach Greenbelt.  The majority of the stairways in the early part are pedestrian over-crossings of the Blue Line, and in the second half, the route traverses 6 stairways in Signal Hill before continuing along the Newport Line back to Naples Island with two final small stair-streets leading us back to where this loop started, at the Naples Fountain after 20.6 miles of walking.

Start Location:  103rd St/Watts Towers Metro Blue Line Station, which is rail and bus accessible via the Metro Blue Line, and Metro Bus Line TBD along TBD Street.

Finish Location: Naples Island Fountain, which is bus accessible via the Long Beach Transit (LBT) Bus Line 121, along 2nd St, a two block north walk on Ravenna Dr to 2nd St.

Transit Connections:
Finish to Start: Walk two blocks north on Ravenna Dr to 2nd St, and take Long Beach Transit (LBT) Bus Line 121, west to Long Beach Transit mall, Shelter H. Then take the Metro Blue Line, from the Downtown Long Beach Metro Blue Line Station on 1st St, north to 103rd St/Watts Towers Metro Blue Line Station, where the walk started.

DTLA to Start: Take the Metro Blue Line south to the 103rd St/Watts Towers Metro Blue Line Station, where the walk starts.

Finish to DTLA: Walk two blocks north on Ravenna Dr to 2nd St, and take Long Beach Transit (LBT) Bus Line 121, west to Long Beach Transit mall, Shelter H. Then take the Metro Blue Line, from the Downtown Long Beach Metro Blue Line Station on 1st St, north to the 7th/Metro Station, which connects with the Metro Expo Line Train, and Metro Red/Purple Line Trains.

Route Description:
Miles 0-5: Starting at the southwest corner of 103rd and Grandee, look to the east to see the Watts Station, that served the Long Beach Red Car Line:
Watts Station
Now head south on Grandee to 104th St, and look to your left stairway leading to the pedestrian over-crossing (skinny-bridge) that crosses over the Blue Line tracks:
Grandee-Graham POC
Cross the street at the yellow striped crosswalk, then climb the stairs, crossing over the tracks, and do notice that this stairway has received some piano keys of its own in non-slip strips normally used to keep one’s footing stable in the rain:
Piano Keys Grandee-Graham
Continue across the elevated walkway, and go down the other side, then cross Graham, to the east side, and turn right, veering right at the fork onto Santa Ana Blvd, on the south east side of the street. You can use the park path to your left, leading to the Watts Towers:
Watts Towers
Check out the towers, and go behind the fence if the gate is open, otherwise walk around the fence to the right and end up on 107th St heading west. As you walk west on 107th, you will pass the Watts Towers Art Center on your right side:
Watts Towers Art Center
Also, don’t forget look to your left on the south side of the street to check out the homes with mosaic tiled fences:
Mosiac by Watts Towers
At the west end of the block, turn left on Willowbrook, and follow the Blue Line tracks to your right  until Willowbrook bends to the left onto 112th St, and take 112th to Wilmington, and cross Wilmington to the east side, and turn right, heading south on the sidewalk past the one mile mark, to 114th, then go left at the fork back onto Willowbrook. Follow Willowbrook for just over 2 miles, passing miles 2 and 3 of the route, again paralleling the Blue Line tracks, where you will reach Mona Blvd. Diagonal across Mona, and veer right onto the east side sidewalk going south. The next block south on Mona is Rosecrans Ave. Cross at the signal to the south side and turn left, staying to the right side of the frontage road, which is in turn, to the right of the bridge. Follow Rosecrans frontage past Tamarind, then you will arrive at Alameda, and in front of you and climbing to bridge, is a stairway:
Rosecrans POC
Cross Alameda, and climb the stairs, and the only way you can go on the bridge is to your right, crossing over the Blue Line tracks, and go down the bookend stairway on the opposite side, back down to the far side of Alameda. Cross Alameda to the east, and turn right to head south on Alameda past Elm and Palmer to Wilson Park. Diagonal to the left to go to the park restrooms, and return to Alameda, reaching mile 4 of the route, then turn left on Alameda, and continue south to Compton Blvd. There are a lot of fast food places in the area, and even a CVS on the south side of Compton Blvd, suitable for a break. Turn left onto the near side of Compton, and cross Alameda continuing west across both sides of Willowbrook, then turn left, heading south on the far west sidewalk of Willowbrook. Cross Compton Blvd, then pass an old post office building, then ahead of you to the right is a mural of Barack Obama, and before you reach him, a stairway to your right:
Compton Civic Center N1
Climb it and proceed between the buildings westward to the MLK Memorial:
JFK and MLK Memorial
Turn left, and follow the walkway south around City Hall, then at the middle of the Compton Courthouse, turn left and follow the walkway to another set of stairs:
Compton Civic Center N2Descend the stairs and turn right to continue south on Willowbrook for another 6/10th s of a mile to Caldwell. As you approch Caldwell, you will see yet another skinny bridge to your left crossing the Blue Line tracks, and at Caldwell, there is a stairway entrance at right:
Caldwell POC of BL
Climb the stairs, cross the bridge and descend to the opposite side of Willowbrook at Caldwell, head south on Willowbrook, and you will immediately reach the 5 mile mark, which is the end of this first 5 mile section of the route.

Miles 5-10: Continue south on Willowbrook, past Johnson and Bennett, cross Bennett, and turn left going east, then right on Tamarind, heading south. The next street you reach is Greenleaf, and cross it and continue into the large Gateway Towne Center shopping complex. Follow the main southbound road on the ped walkway, passing between the first two sets of large buildings, then at the next large road crossing prior to reaching the next set of buildings, which has a Jamba Juice and a Subway, turn right and go around to the back of the buildings heading southwest, to a large parking lot.  To your left an off in the distance is the Crystal Casino Hotel, your goal is to cross the parking lot and find the pedestrian over-crossing, since it has a stairway. There is a road separating the shopping center parking lot from the hotel parking area, that has a line of red bricks down the middle, called Auto Dr. You have to cross it to get to the hotel parking lot, and once across, diagonal to the right, to reach the stairway:
Crystal Casino Hotel path
Crystal Casino POC stairs
Cross the POC and climb the stairs, then turn left before entering the hotel. Walk downhill and around the hotel in a clockwise manner, passing mile 6, and when you reach the side opposite the one that the stairway lead to, turn right and ahead of you is a stairway leading up to the hotel entry road that is above you:
Hotel Rd Stairs
Climb the stairway and turn left at the top and follow the main access road to Artesia, then veer left and continue east on Artesia past the ramp from Alameda, and on down the hill to Santa Fe. Turn right and cross Artesia on the near side and continue south on Santa Fe under the SR-91 freeway and past a building (Foam Factory) to the right, to reach a set of rail tracks that cross the road. Cross the track and turn right to follow the tracks:
Tracks off Santa Fe leading to bike pathLook to your left for the end of the fence and beginning of the path. The end will likely be blocked by a K-Barrier which you can step over to enter the bike path:
Tracks off Santa Fe leading to bike path 2
Once on the bike path, you follow it southeast passing mile 7, crossing Santa Fe, and continuing south, passing mile 8 you will come to the end of the path at Del Amo Blvd, which is a very busy 6-lane arterial, so don’t try to cross it, and turn left and follow Del Amo to the far side of Susana Rd, turn right and cross Susana to the south side of Del Amo, and turn left, and follow the narrow sidewalk east under the I-710 freeway and be careful when crossing the on/off ramp pair, and continue east on Del Amo over the LA River, then turn right to the bike path, actually a shared use pathway that peds can also, and follow it southbound past mile 9, then cross under a rail bridge, and continue south reaching a triple fork prior to the Blue Line bridge.

17492510_10211182773436540_8098868719660675072_oFork in bike path by Blue Line BridgeThe right fork goes under the blue line bridge, the middle fork goes up to the bridge, and you will take the left fork, that descends toward the parallel water channel to the LA River to your left, and after a short distance, becomes a dirt trail and makes a 90 degree bend to the left:
So you will be heading east a short distance, then the trail Ts into another dirt trail, a neighborhood walking path, which you will take to the right. Follow the trail until it ends bending leftward onto a street, Del Mar Ave. Cross the street and get on the sidewalk, turning right to follow Del Mar SE paralleling the Blue Line tracks which are in a depression to the right of the road. You will reach Terrylynn just past the 10 mile mark, which is the end of this section of the route!

Miles 10-15: Continuing SE on Del Mar, past Terrylynn, the sidewalk will end, and you keep going until you come to the next signed street intersection at San Antonio Dr. Across San Antonio, you will see a small side-stair in front of you:
Del Mar-San Antonio Side Stair
Cross San Antonio, and jog left to enter the side-stair from the top and go down all 6 steps, and continue southeast on Del Mar alongthe side of Los Cerritos Park. At the end of the park, at Los Cerritos Park Pl, cross to the diagonal opposite corner to continue around a left hand turn onto a walkway between the apartments on the left at your level, and the Blue Line tracks to the right and below. Follow the walkway as it passes under the I-405 freeway, and then it does a climbing leftward switchback to become a skinny-bridge crossing over the Blue Line tracks, and then descends to where 39th St meets Magnolia Ave on a bend at mile 11.
405 POC of Blue Line
You will make the hard left to continue southeast on Magnolia 5 blocks to Wardlow Rd. Turn left on Wardlow and take it to Pacific Pl, and turn right and cross Wardlow on the near side of pacific, taking Pacific SE past 33rd, 32nd, and 31st Streets, passing mile 12, to reach Spring St. Cross Spring, and turn left on the far side sidewalk, and continue east on Spring until you get close to the Blue Line tracks. Before the tracks is a frontage road, American Ave to your right, veer onto it and take it southeast again paralleling the Blue Line at your level. To your right is Veteran’s Park, and continuing on the American Ave, which serves a long parking area, at the far end of the park, you reach a second parking area, and continue southeast through it on the right hand sidewalk and you will pass the Willow Street Blue Line Station, soon thereafter reaching 27th St, and the entrance to a Metro Parking Structure with a clock tower, and to the south a large shopping center:
American Ave at Willow Station
The shopping center is your lunch stop. Eat at any of the restaurants in the area, and meet up on the many bus benches at the SE corner of on Willow at Long Beach Blvd, in front of the Rite Aid. After Lunch continue east on Willow, cross Pasadena Ave, then turn right and walk through dinky Fellowship Park. We are now switching from following the the Blue Line (former Long Beach Red Car Line), to following the Newport Line, which diagonals through Long Beach to the SE. We will be zig-zagging all the way to near the finish of the segment, save for a diversion to traverse the stairways of Signal Hill, then returning to the Newport Line, track alignment. At the end of Friendship Park, Pasadena bends to the right to head due south, follow it to 25th Way and turn left on the near side sidewalk, and 25th Way will cross mile 13, then bend to the right and essentially becomes an alleyway, following a public storage to the left, which sits on the former Red Car tracks of the Newport Line. At the end of the alleyway, jog right on Burnett, then immediate left onto Olive going south, then left (east) on Eagle St, then right on Myrtle Ave, then left on the near side of 23rd St. Follow 23rd St east to reach MLK Ave, cross it to enter the bike path:
Park on MLK in LB
Follow the park bike path, which bends to the right, again paralleling the Red Car track alignment, then it ends facing into Lemon Ave south. Follow Lemon to Hill, cross to the SE corner of Lemon and Hill, and turn left to face east again on Hill, and follow it to the right of the bridge on the frontage road. When the frontage road kinks to the right, look under the bridge for the entrance to yet another bike path to the left:
Undercrossing of Orange-Hill
Enter the path and follow it, keeping an eye out for some interesting murals on the surrounding retaining walls and nearby buildings, here is one example:
Murals along path
Follow the meandering bike path in the old Red Car rail bed, passing mile 14, on to where that path ends where Wesley and 20th St converge, at Walnut, and look to your left on Walnut, and you will see two pairs of train tracks crossing Walnut. These are some of the the last remnants of the original Red Car rails of the Newport Line. Head eastward on 20th across Walnut and Alamitos and follow it to Cherry, then cross Cherry and turn right to head south briefly to find the continuation of 20th, and turn left on the near side to continue along 20th, 5 blocks to Stanley Ave. Turn right on Stanley and climb the gradually steepening street. At the top you might notice that the dead end for cars is passable for you becasue there is a 16 step stairway:
Climb the steps, and turn right on 21st St. Don’t just step into 21st St, it is busy with fast traffic on blind curves. After turning right on 21st, you will pass a hedge row, and across from you is the beginning of a sidewalk on the opposite side of 21st at the far side of Stanley. Carefully cross, checking for traffic and turn right continuing east on 21st St. Take 21st around two bends to Ohio St. Cross Ohio and turn left on the far side sidewalk, climbing up the sidewalk, crossing Hill, then turn right on the far side sidewalk, and take Hill past Temple, going down the 16% grade on Hill St, all the way to the bottom at the intersection with Obispo St. You are at mile 15, completing the 3rd section of the route.

Miles 15-20.6:  It’s time to traverse, and by traverse I mean climb, all of the Signal Hill stairways near Discovery Well Park. Turn left from Hill onto Obispo, and take it around a leftward bend to the northwest, to reach the entrance to a gated community, on Llewellyn Ave, which allows public access during the daytime. Turn left on the near side of Llewellyn, and pass through the ped entrance, and make the first left onto Maxson Ct, which ends in a T with Jeans Ct to the left and Sarah Ct to the right. Take the left fork on Jeans, and follow it around to the right, continuing on a gentle rightward bend then straightening out. Pass two homes on the straight section and look for the path sign, and the path between homes, which leads to a stairway:
Jeans-Sarah Composite
Climb the stairway, and at the end of the path, turn right onto Sarah Ct, and take Sarah back to Maxson Ct, and turn left on the near side, following Maxson across Llewellyn, and after passing two homes, there will be another path and stairway to your right:
Maxson-Avis Composite
Climb the path and wooden stairs to end on Avis Ct, and turn right, following it to the intersection with Amelia Ct, turning left and after 4 homes, there is a “missing house”, and at the far end of the space, there is another dirt path and stairway:
Amelia-DWP Composite
Climb the stairway leading up to Discovery Well Park Rd, which is a dirt road. Turn left on the park road, and follow it past where it becomes paved, and passes Discovery Well Park. The park is a good place to take a 3/4 walk break since it has water and restrooms. The water fountain is by the basketball court. After your break, continue on Discovery Well Park Rd past the green painted gate, and look to your left for the entrance to another path:
Bare path entrance
Take the path down to the bottom, pointing you directly onto Llewellyn Dr. Cross to the left side sidewalk and walk down the hill on Llewellyn past Amelia, Avis, Maxson, and exit the gated community onto Obispo on the opposite side of Llewellyn you entered. Turn left on Obispo, and follow it past mile 16 to Hathaway Ct on your left.  turn left onto Hathaway, and climb the hill. After passing 5 houses, there is a stairway to your left:
Harthaway-DWP Composite
Climb the concrete steps, then the wood and dirt steps and continue on the dirt path, and go left onto the dirt road at the top, which is Discovery Well Park Rd. Follow the road on a relatively gentle climb and you will see concrete steps to your right:
DWP to Panorama
This 73 step stairway is the longest stairway of the day. Climb the concrete then wooden steps to the top at Panorama Dr, turn left and Panorama becomes Temple Ave. Head south on the left (east) side of Temple, passing Hill, then 21st, and just before 20th St is a small stairway that forks to the left to serve an oil well pump:
Oil Pump Stairs.jpg
Go down the 9 steps, and then turn right to cross 20th at Temple and continue south on Temple, passing PCH, mile 17, then 17th, 16th, and 15th Streets to reach Spaulding St which diagonals to the left. Cross Spaulding and enter Orizaba Park, which occupies the former Newport Line Red Car rail alignment we were following before taking a diversion to climb the Signal Hill stairways. Turn left and diagonal through the park. After passing the exercise equipment, there is a big hunk of stainless steel you will be approaching from the rear. Walk to the front of it and turn around to see a life size front of a Red Car train made of stainless steel:

Orizaba Park Red Car Art and Tracks

Newport Line Red Car Art at Orizaba Park in Long Beach:   L – Train Front     R – Faux Tracks

This sculpture is to commemorate the Newport Red Car line, and when facing away from it, you can see the bricks laid into the concrete to symbolically represent its tracks. Follow the faux brick tracks across the park to the end at Orizaba (yes, this is the same Orizaba further south that has a stairway at Bluff Park that we climbed on Segment A!). Cross to the opposite side of Orizaba, and veer right to head south to Anaheim St (the same Anaheim from Segment A, but much further east!). Turn left on the near side of Anaheim, and walk east to the next signalized intersection at Obispo, and cross Obispo Ave, turn right and cross Anaheim, then turn left to head east again on Anaheim. Befor you reach the McDonalds, turn right into the parking lot, walking around the McDonalds on the right, and follow the diagonal access-way through the lot. You are walking on the Red Car alignment, where the racks once carried Red Cars. If you look straight ahead, you can see that Goodwill building across the street follows the former rail bed. When you reach Redondo Ave, turn right and walk to the crosswalk, then turn left and cross Redondo. Between the Goodwill and the 7-Eleven is a diagonal alley/entrance to the Goodwill parking lot:
Redondo Crossing to Goodwill
Follow it to the southeast, still following the Red Car alignment. Exit the Goodwill lot through the open gate (if the gate is locked, go back to Redondo, turn left and walk to 11th St, then turn left again taking 11th to Newport) and cross the intersection of 11th and Newport to the far side of Newport and follow the diagonal alley past the apartments (which are on the former rail bed). At the end of the alley cross Loma and you will have arrived at the “back” entrance to Zaferia Community Garden:
Zaferia Junction Community Garden - back gate
Normally the gate to the garden is locked, so if you are walking by yourself, go around the garden, by taking Loma south, then turn left on 10th, passing mile 18, and walk two blocks to Grand, and the continuation of the Red Car line, now a Greenbelt, diagonals to your right. If you are with me, I will aim to have to the people at the Community Garden let us walk through it, passing mile 18, and give us a quickie tour. So we will exit through the main entrance to the garden on Grand, then walk a few steps south to 10th, and continue across 10th to the south side, turn left on 10th, then after a short walk past the palm trees, enter the Greenbelt to your diagonal right:
Greenbelt 10th St Entrance
You may have to open the unlocked gate, and please close it behind you. Continue SE through the Greenbelt, which ends at a gate on Termino, turn right, walk south to 8th St, then Cross Termino to the continuation of the Greenbelt:
Greenbelt at Termino
Walk southeast on this segment of the Greenbelt which exits at the NW corner of 7th St and Bennett Ave. There is a nice Greenbelt sign marking the segment:
Greenbelt Sign
Turn left to stay on 7th going east, crossing Ximeno Ave, then turn right and cross 7th, heading south crossing the next block, with the Greenbelt continuing to your diagonal left:
Greenbelt - Ximeno to Park
Walk through this section of the Greenbelt, the last one, where it will end on 4th St, at Park. Turn left, and Cross Park, where 4th changes name to Appian Way, and , and bends to the right to follow the rail bed, passing mile 19, as you follow the sidewalk along the SE side of the Colorado Lagoon. You’ll pass the bridge across the lagoon to your left, and a small support building, the Wetlands & Marine Science Education Center at the Colorado Lagoon painted with a beautiful wrap-around mural on the outer wall:
Wetlands Marine Science Education Center Building at the Colorado Lagoon
Continue SE on Appian Way to Colorado St, turn left to head east, and to your left is a set of restrooms with interesting marine themed tile work on the interior walls. Even if you don’t need to use the restroom, it’s worth going inside to take a look. Continue east on Colorado to Nieto Ave, cross on the far side of Nieto and take the sidewalk south to Paoli Way. At this point you have a choice. You can follow the main route that walks SE along the Marine Stadium inlet of Alamitos Bay, or you can head south on Nieto to do an optional dead-end 46-step stairway (marked with a green line on the Google route map of Segment O). What follows is the main route description. Turn left onto Paoli Way, and follow it to the Marine Stadium Park, and veer left into the parking lot, which has a walkway to the left, which take you to the right side of a long inlet:
Marine Stadium panorama
Get on the walkway to the right in the above image, and follow it SE along the inlet, to a set of public restrooms, where the route diagonals right, then continues SE on Paoli Way to a second set of restrooms, then at the end of Paoli Way, make a left turn and walk out of the parking area to the sidewalk on Appian Way, turn left, walk to the intersection with Bayshore, then cross Appian on the far side of Bayshore. At this point, if you climbed the optional stairway on Vista, you will also arrive at this SE intersection corner on Appian. From here, Continue SE on Apian way climbing over the bridge to main Naples Island. Atthe end of the bridge cross Sorrento,then cross Ravenna Dr, then turn right onto the sidewalk. You are now in the home stretch of the entire LA Loop! Continue southwest on Ravenna, which bends to the left to reach 2nd St, heading south. Cross 2nd St, and continue south on Ravenna past Campo and Garibaldi, and veer to the left to stay on the walkway to the left side of the bridge over the Rivo Alto Canal. The walkway Ts into the Rivo Alto Canal walkway, and to your right is the second to the last stairway:
NE Rivo Alto-Ravenna
Climb the 12 steps up to the bridge, and turn left and cross the bridge. At the far side of the canal is the a down stairway to your left:
SE Rivo Alto-Ravenna
Descend the last 10 steps of the LA Loop! Turn right, and continue on the walkway paralleling the bridge, and at the end of the bridge pass Naples Ln, and you will come to the Ravenna loop which circumnavigates the Naples Fountain were you started the entire LA Loop:
Naples Fountain
Cross Ravenna to the fountain to end this final segment at mile 20.6!

Post Segment O selfie-800w

Official Segment finishers  L-R: Dan Gutierrez, Elizabeth & Pat Schirmer, Kristy & Dave Moorman on 7 May 2017

Congratulations, you have completed Segment O of the LA Loop!

Post LA Loop Selfie-800w

Official LA Loop finishers! L-R: Dan Gutierrez, Elizabeth & Pat Schirmer on 7 May 2017

And congratulations to those who completed the entire 309 mile LA Loop!

Stairway Data Table

Seg# SS# SW# In-300 Zip Stairway Name Up Down
O01 465 N/A 90002 Grandee Ave/Graham Ave POC of BL 47 48
O02 466 N/A 90220 Rosecrans POC of Blue Line 49 48
O03 146 N/A 90220 Compton City Hall N 11
O04 147 N/A 90220 Compton City Hall S 10
O05 467 N/A 90220 Caldwell POC of Blue Line 51 51
O06 148 N/A 90220 Hotel POC of Access Road 8
O07 149 N/A 90220 Hotel Parking Lot to Access Road 32
O08 468 N/A 90755 Stanley Ave 16
O09 469 N/A 90755 Jeans Ct/Sarah Ct 25
O10 470 N/A 90755 Maxson Ct/Avis Ct 34
O11 471 N/A 90755 Amelia Ct/Discovery Well Park Dr 51
O12 472 N/A 90755 Hathaway Ct/Discovery Well Pk Dr 21
O13 473 N/A 90755 Discovery Well Park Dr/Panorama Dr 73
O14 150 N/A 90755 20th St/Temple Ave 9
O15 474 N/A 90803  Rivo Alto Canal/Ravenna SE 12
O16 475 N/A 90803  Rivo Alto Canal/Ravenna NE 10
Total Stair Steps ———> 430 176
Total Stair-Streets ——-> 11
Tot Non Stair-Street Stairs > 5