Xootr Kick Scooter Ride Through Northwest Passage

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Two weeks ago I’d followed signs to get from the San Gabriel River Trail to the Whittier Greenway Trail in Whittier, CA on my Xootr kick scooter ride. The official link, via busy Beverly Boulevard, seemed longer than it ought to be.

I’d studied google maps of the area, and suspected there was a faster way to go from one trail to the other, by riding through an oddly isolated neighborhood tucked between the 605 and the railroad tracks.

So this morning I gave this Xootr kick scooter ride a shot

I parked at Guirado Park, near the northwest terminus of the Whittier Greenway Trail. Across Pioneer Boulevard, Obregon Street crosses a bridge over the 605 into a small neighborhood sandwiched between the 605 and the railroad tracks.

Unmarked narrow paved foot path that goes a hundred yards, to a street called Nobles Avenue.
Unmarked narrow paved foot path that goes a hundred yards, to a street called Nobles Avenue.

The neighborhood’s split in two, with two blocks on the north side, and four or five blocks on the separate south side, reachable one neighborhood to the next only via an unmarked narrow paved foot path that goes a hundred yards, to a street called Nobles Avenue.

The road that merges

To drive in and out of the south side, there’s a road that merges with an exit from the 605 S, that leads to to Whittier Boulevard. You’d never figure this out without some serious thinking up front.

I scooted across the Obregon Street bridge, then turned left on the paved pedestrian path that hugs the wall separating me from the 605. Then I turned west on Nobles Avenue, went just one block, then scooted north on Esperanza Street another block, then west on another paved path that took me fifty yards, to Amigo Park, a small community park with a baseball diamond. Getting close.

A chain link fence

I could see a chain link fence that separates Amigo Park from the railroad tracks that parallel the 605, and I knew that the San Gabriel River Trail was just on the other side of the tracks.

There’s no marked path to get to the tracks, but in the northwest corner of the park, I spied an opening in the chain link fence. I walked through, checked right and left for trains, then stepped over the tracks, and down the other side through another break in another chain link fence, to get on the San Gabriel River Trail.

Success! The rest of my ride!

Snapped photo of the watershed.
Snapped photo of the watershed.

The rest of my Xootr scooter ride was going south, to Whittier Avenue, and then taking possession of the northern third of the San Gabriel River Basin, the part I’d missed on my ride with my scooter buddy Jorge two weeks ago.

A new friend I met on the trail, Junior, kindly snapped a photo to record this moment of triumph overlooking the watershed area towards Washington Boulevard.

Discovering my own Northwest Passage

Northwest Passage to the San Gabriel River Trail via Nobles Ave and Esperanza Street and out of Amigo Park.
Northwest Passage to the San Gabriel River Trail via Nobles Ave and Esperanza Street and out of Amigo Park.

In discovering my own Northwest Passage to the San Gabriel River Trail via Nobles Ave and Esperanza Street and out of Amigo Park, I felt like Roald Amundsen must have felt when he navigated through the Northwest Passage from the Atlantic to the Pacific in 1906.

Don’t forget to check out my website at JonathanKelley.net.

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Jonathan Kelleyhttps://www.jonathankelley.net/
Jonathan Kelley, 80, was born in Boston, and educated at Exeter and Princeton, then Harvard Medical School, after a year teaching English in Cali, Colombia. He was a Navy anesthesiologist during Viet Nam. He spent the middle decades of his life working in a community hospital in Northern California. Besides his career in medicine, he’s a chef, pianist, and actor in his artistic life. In the kitchen, he specializes in croissants and cooking with coconuts. At the piano, it’s boogie woogie and Joplin rags. As an actor, he’s done fourteen seasons in a Mexican Christmas play in Los Angeles, plus the occasional movie role, as in the soon-to-be-released feature film “Amor en 266 Millas,” where he plays the hippie patriarch of a desert commune in the Antelope Valley. He has two books available on Amazon, “Counting Backwards from 100: My Life as an Anesthesiologist,” and “Short Stories by Jonathan Kelley.” Searching for improved balance and leg strength at age 77, Jonathan came by chance upon a Xootr scooter. Jonathan’s wife is the lovely Puerto Rican actress Gloria Laino. Their mix is like Puerto Rican arroz con gandules served next to New England style cranberry sauce.


  1. Hi. This is Patty. I met you on the Greenway trail when I was on my bike And then I just saw you on the trail at Gunn. I was in a brown truck and I was waving at you. Loved you article and your adventureousness if that’s a word. Hope to see you soon again on the trail.

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