Maple Leaf and Thornton Creek
Wednesday, May 25
Jake Jaramillo in 20th stairs, 5, 95th stairs, 97th stairs, Beaver, Kingfisher, La Villa, Lake City Way, Maple Leaf, North Seattle, Northgate, Thornton Creek

For a kaleidoscopic view of nature, urban art and environmental design, this Seattle stairway walk is unparalleled! Thornton Creek, the biggest year-round creek in Seattle, provides the running theme for this exploration of Seattle stairs. You'll cross and re-cross it; view it bank-side; stand on a bridge viewing it from tree-canopy height; and see how it's engineered by humans and animals (yup, beavers)! At 4.7 miles, this is the longest stairway walk in the book, full of interesting things to do and see.

The "www" icon just above the slideshow means it contains additional pictorial content that was referenced in the book. Scroll below that for even more views from this walk.


Looking down into the Knickerbocker Flood Plain, Kingfisher Natural Area

Creekside view at La Villa Meadows Natural Area

A side trip down an unpaved lane leads to a beautiful view of Thornton Creek; a trail on the other side, just out of the frame to the right, begs for future exploration

This view overlaps right side of picture above, one year later


A close view of beaver handiwork

"Bad Buoys" is part of a sculptural suite by Benson Shaw at Thornton Creek Water Quality Channel

Thornton Creek Water Quality Channel (TCWQC): designed for urban nature

A discreet entryway: NE 95th Street stairs

Finishing up: heading down the NE 95th Street stairs to Lake City Way

Article originally appeared on Seattle Stairway Walks (
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