Mt. Washington, an urban hiker’s paradise #RachelleAyala @mimisgang1 #mgtab

We went to Pittsburgh and saw R2D2! Who knew that Pittsburgh has so many delightful secrets, including steps galore, old churches, and unexpected scenic views?

This spring, while vacationing for our son’s graduation from Carnegie Mellon University, my brother-in-law took us on a walking trip on the south side of Pittsburgh near Mt. Washington. The city is full of steps that go up and down the gorges carved out by the three rivers. We stayed in Mt. Washington, on the south side of Pittsburgh. The views from there are awesome, and from one viewpoint, we counted ten bridges. We also did the touristy thing of taking the incline down the slope and back up.

But the highlight of our trip was hiking up and down the miles and miles of steps. Pittsburgh seriously is a city built for mountain goats. Some of the steps are well maintained where others disappear into the bushes. They provide shortcuts through many neighborhoods whereas cars have to go a roundabout route. My sister pointed out a set of houses perched on the hillside that have no street and are accessible only by stairs. Imagine carrying your groceries up every week.

Here I am, halfway up a long series of steps. It’s a beautiful spring day, but can you imagine trudging up and down on your way to work on an icy wintry day?

The city is an eclectic mix of old and new. Many buildings preceded the days of building codes, and we opened a door that was overgrown with plants. It was half filled with dirt inside. There’s also a house with a door that you never want to step out from.

Next time you’re in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, look up some of the Pittsburgh Steps tours. They are self-guided, and be prepared for a nice workout. By the way, the streets are so narrow in the Mt. Washington area that everyone parks their cars on the sidewalk. I’ll always remember Pittsburgh as a city where you curb your car instead of your dog. A common thing locals do is to place a chair on their parking spot to save their car a “seat.”

Hope you enjoyed my introduction to Pittsburgh and a few of their many staircases and steps.

When I’m on vacation, there’s nothing better than relaxing in the evening with a good book. We have a new boxed set for you of romantic stories for you to enjoy – Unforgettable Love, Box Set #30 in our Unforgettable Collection. Hope you enjoy your summer break!

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About Rachelle Ayala

Rachelle Ayala is a USA Today bestselling author of contemporary romance and romantic suspense. Her foremost goal is to take readers on a shared emotional journey with her characters as they grow and become more true to themselves. Rachelle believes in the power of love to overcome obstacles and feels that everyone should find love as often as possible, especially if it's within the pages of a book. Her book, Knowing Vera, won the 2015 Angie Ovation Award, A Father for Christmas garnered a 2015 Readers’ Favorite Gold Award, Christmas Stray received a 2016 Readers' Favorite Gold Award, and Playing for the Save got the 2017 Readers' Favorite Gold Award in Realistic Fiction. She is also a writing teacher and founder of the Romance In A Month writing community. She lives in California with her husband and has three children and two birds.

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