East Bay: A Walking Guide to the Historic Staircases of Berkeley and Oakland
By Charles Fleming
(Santa Monica Press, Paperback, 9781595800633, 240pp.)
Publication Date: May 2011
With more than 400 paved pathways and public staircases latticing the slopes of Berkeley and Oakland alone, the hills of East Bay contain one of the finest and densest urban hiking environments in the state of California, making them an ideal subject for this unique walking guide. Containing approximately 40 individual hiking loops that link multiple staircases into one- to two-hour self-guided strolls, this metropolitan trail map sprinkles in fascinating facts about the hidden staircases, the historic homes around them, and the famous Bay Area characters who gave them their names. Calibrated by length, difficulty, and duration and accompanied by an easy-to-follow map, the circular walks follow the footsteps of such legendary figures as Bret Harte, Mark Twain, and John Muir and climb such landmarks as Easter Way and Sunset Trail. All within easy walking distance from BART or bus stops, free parking, and local cafes, these urban treks will delight tourists, newly arrived Berkeley undergrads, and veteran Bay Area residents alike.
Charles Fleming teaches journalism at the University of Southern California. He has written for numerous magazines and newspapers, including the Los Angeles Herald-Examiner, the Los Angeles Times, Newsweek, the New York Times, Vanity Fair, and Variety. He is the author of High Concept: Don Simpson and the Hollywood Culture of Excess and Secret Stairs: A Walking Guide to the Historic Staircases of Los Angeles and the coauthor of My Lobotomy, Three Weeks in October: The Manhunt for the Serial Sniper, and A Goomba’s Guide to Life. He lives in Los Angeles.