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  • What tips and tricks are there to building steps?
  • can it still be accessible for equipment and the elderly?
  • how can I make it look like it has always been there?
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up vote 4 down vote accepted

This is what I determined before I started. Good planning is essential!

  • kind of soil: compacted clay soil, suitable for laying flagstone on top with minimal base
  • measurements: taken three times. The height of the slope can be particularly difficult to determine accurately. I set up a long stick with markings and used a laser level
  • transition areas: had to join with two other pathways, a slope on one side, wall on the other and transition to a gate at the bottom
  • we get lots of rain spring and fall and lots of snow. Frost heave can be an issue.
  • I rented a 40 yard bin to dispose of the soil.
  • I wanted to be able to get bicycles, wheelbarrows, elderly people and skiers up and down the steps
  • four tons of limestone flagstone and ledge rock and two cubic yards of stone dust required. Gravel (five eighths with no fines) already on site.
  • Informal style matched the existing stonework
  • building code recommended a 7" rise and handrails only if there was a drop
  • I called for a utility locate before starting construction and determined that by keeping the grade close to existing level within three feet of the property line I would not be disturbing any utilities

Rough sketch of stone steps

After two hours work removing grass to the bin enter image description here

enter image description here

After 30 hours of work

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