An Afternoon Walk In The Steel City

An Afternoon Walk In The Steel City

Pittsburgh (11 of 33)
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I arrived in Pittsburgh mid-afternoon last  Saturday. It was only my third visit to the Steel City. I was there  to celebrate my niece Cassidy’s graduation from Duquesne Law School. I am so proud of her. While in the city, I was staying at the historic Omni William Penn Hotel on Grant Street.

After quickly  parking, checking in and taking my luggage to the room I was off to roam the streets of the city.  It was a partly sunny and mild. A  pleasant day for a walk in the Steel City. Being a Saturday afternoon there was little motor vehicle traffic on the streets.  Although I love my hikes in the woods I also enjoy roaming and exploring the “concrete jungles” of our large cities. 

I did not have a lot of time. Reservations for dinner with family members was at 5 p.m. and it was already 3:30 when I began my hike.  So  I decided to walk down to Point State Park located at the junction of the Monongahela and Allegheny Rivers. The confluence of these  two rivers create the Ohio River. Leaving my hotel I walked down on Smithfield Street to the bridge that crossed the Monongahela River. 

Across the river was the Mt. Washington section of the city. Also visible was the Monongahela  incline or funicular that was built in 1870 to ascend the homes of the workers who lived atop Mt. Washington. I rode these on my last visit to the city. (my blog post from that visit  can be found in the archives of website). 

At the section of the river shore I realized that there was no river walk or trail here,  only the busy and noisy  interstate highway. So I made my way back toward the downtown area of the city and followed  First Avenue  toward the park. 

Towering overhead as I walked was the spectacular PPG Place building. 

In some areas it’s sparkling glass splendor contrasted old and  dilapidated buildings remaining from the Steel City’s industrial past. 

As I neared Point State Park I came upon crowds of people, approaching from all sides, and converging at the Portal Bridge tunnel which allows access to the park. I enjoyed the happy  sounds of the folks walking in the sunshine to enjoy this scenic park along the rivers. 

I walked under the bridge and emerged into an entirely different world from  the tall buildings and noise of the city. 

Trees, flowers and a large fountain dominated the landscape and the only noise was the chatter of people and the joyful shouts of children playing in the park. 

The songs of birds, in the trees or, like this robin, on the ground also filed the air. 

And flowers, like these  China roses and

wild geraniums bloomed in the many gardens in the park. 

The large fountain added to the  carnival like atmosphere in this small park. It was perfect weather to be outdoors and many of the cities residents were taking advantage of it. 

Across the river I saw Heinz Field,  home of the Pittsburgh Steelers football team. 

As I said i hadn’t much time so I quickly took some photographs and began my hike back to my hotel, passing a replica of Fort Pitt on my way out of the park.

I walked toward the skyline of the city, and

zigzagged my way back roughly following Fifth Avenue, taking in the sights along the way, including this statute, 

and the pretty rhododendrons that were starting to bloom.

I made one detour on my return hike, I walked  to Market Square to see if any  events were taking place. There was a farmers market here on my last visit. There were no organized activities on Saturday, just a lot of folks enjoying the outdoors in the city. 

I continued my walk through the streets of the city,

and arrived at my hotel  around 4;30, leaving me not much time to get ready for dinner. I had no regrets taking my almost 4 mile hike and seeing a little bit more of the Steel City. Here is a link to a gallery on  my blog website with more photographs from my hike in the Steel City. Pittsburgh afternoon hike May 15 2021. 

There’s so much that I like about Pittsburgh, actually. The cultural district and museums are wonderful, and I encourage everyone to check them out. And the food is excellent, too!
— Troy Polamalu


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