Photo by Stephanie Rivera. All other photos by Tom Carroll.
While thousands of runners began their trek through Long Beach for the annual JetBlue Marathon early Sunday morning, Whittier native Tom Carroll began a slower, and longer, trek of his own—a walk beginning at the top of the LA River, eventually ending in Long Beach Monday evening.
Carroll, who is the host of the YouTube tour show Tom Explores Los Angeles, said he decided to travel the length of the 50-plus mile long river in an effort to better understand the waterway, after learning about its history—a history that includes a series of devastating floods that caused the river to be channelized in the 30s and 40s.
“Now, I can visualize pretty much every part of the river and understand it, at least physically, a lot better,” Carroll said. “It’s a fun challenge and another way to understand Los Angeles and Southern California.”
Probably just as important, the 30-year-old, who usually gets around by bike and occasionally runs, said he wanted to try it while he is able-bodied. Though he’s traversed parts of the river on bike, the current North East LA resident said he’s never fully walked it.
“I didn’t know how much longer in my life I’d be physically capable of doing it so I said ‘I guess now’s the time,” Carroll noted.
The Post sat down with Carroll on Monday evening to discuss his recent adventure.
Editor’s note: Interview has been edited for content and clarity.