Out & About—The secret stairs are no longer secret

Out & About

I have lived in La Mesa CA (or so close that I had to go through La Mesa to get anywhere) for 18 years. In all that time I kept hearing about the secret stairs. They were so secret that I never found them until one day I was browsing Google Maps to find the street names near some stairs that I knew about. That was when I noticed that stairs are on Google Maps, so I scrolled over to La Mesa and began looking for stairs. I found them!

Location of the La Mesa secret stairs

img_1592 zoey the cool cat preparing for the weekendThere are five blocks of them! My little heart was all a-pitter-patter, so I got dressed, told Zoey the Cool Cat that I would be right back (she was oblivious), hopped in the car, and drove over to what I was sure were the secret stairs.

Interestingly, everyone seemed to know about the secret stairs yet no one could tell me where they were, and they are not in any tourist guides or books about La Mesa. That’s how secret they are.

The stairs have quite a few places to stop and rest, which is good because I’m 61 and don’t do a lot of stair climbing. There are about 100 steps for each block—and there are five blocks—of which about 75 of those steps in each block are actual stairs. A few of pictures of the stairs and the views of La Mesa:

La Mesa secret stairs

La Mesa with Grossmont Center mall and hospital in the upper leftView from the La Mesa secret stairs

La Mesa secret stairs

The Interstate 8-California Highway 125 intersection
with a nice view of the Santa Rosa mountain range
which are about 30 miles away.View from the La Mesa secret stairs

The stairs are in regular use by physical fitness buffs. It took me almost two hours to traverse them up and down, and to wait for people to get out of my pictures, and to do a couple of re-starts when I was trying to count them!

Thanks for stopping by! See you next time!

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This post approved by Zoey the Cool Cat

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8 thoughts on “Out & About—The secret stairs are no longer secret

  1. Hemingway and Steinbeck

    It’s so much fun finding “secret” things! Looks like those stairs are well-kept. I’m not sure I would be able to climb all those steps in one day! When I was much younger, I did climb down the Washington Monument once and was so happy to reach the bottom!!
    Pam (The Mom of Hemingway and Steinbeck)

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  2. philipfontana

    Russel, FIVE BLOCKS of theses stairs & you climbed them all the way! Bravo for YOU! I’m 70 & “forgetaboutit”! When wife Geri & I travel, no matter where from Rome to Paris, we look at domes & such & say “that’s nice” & skip it! The knees & body parts…not worth the risk! I simply love that photo of “The Interstate 8-California Highway 125 intersection with a nice view of the Santa Rosa mountain range”!!! This was fun! You logo caught my eye on the WordPress news feed “on my way” to check my website stats…..So I had to stop by! Glad I did! Phil from excuseusforliving.com

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    1. Russel Ray Photos Post author

      I only did the stairs because I had all day to do them. Jim and I now are into the “that’s nice” mode. Sadly, I didn’t start exploring San Diego County until the Great Recession and the advent of staycations. Now I’m too old and decrepit to go do a lot of the hiking that I’d like to do, and there are lots of hiking adventures in San Diego County. Plane, helicopter, and auto tours, though, are in my ADVENTURES Excel spreadsheet, and I’m just a margarita away from buying a drone.

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    1. Russel Ray Photos Post author

      I started to count them, but each time I stopped to take pictures, I lost count. Finally, after the third restart, I gave up. There are about 400 stairs on all five sections, plus or minus.

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