Instructables
Picture of A Backyard Path that says
Sometimes your backyard is just a litter box for a pet or a romping ground for a child.  Sometimes it's a place of tranquility that aids in releasing your your tensions after a long day of work.  Whatever your backyard is used for, Most people do something more with it than just let it be a mowing ground.

My wife and I live next to a park that is adjacent to our rear fence.  There are times when the weather makes the backyard less than desirable to walk through.  With a young child and frequent visits to the park, we decided to build a walkway.

A pathway is a great way to add value, both aesthetically and financially.  But it is your backyard.  Don't build a path that you will hate, you will regret or that doesn't make sense to you.  Now let's talk about what you'll need.

 
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Step 1: Tools, Tools, Tools,...some advil and a bed.

Regardless of the style of walkway you build, you will want the following:
Wheelbarrow
Shovel, Round Point
Gardener's shovel
Gloves
Mason Line
Stakes

Depending on the type of walkway you may need:
Hand Tamper
Hammer
Wood for forms, i.e. 2 x 4s
concrete mixer
Shovel, Landscapers
Sand Plate aka compactor


Step 2: Get Started Planning

You can choose to go about this randomly, but you most likely will be frustrated and end up scrapping much of your project to correct the errors.

Take some time to review the types of stones, patterns and current designs currently available on the market.  Check out
http://www.pavestone.com/
http://www.paversearch.com
http://www.cambridgepavers.com/
http://www.pacificpavingstone.com
http://www.unilock.com/

So get out some paper, a pencil and a measuring tape.

First, lay out your backyard.  Significant permament items should be included, fences, gates, patios, ponds, trees, etc. 

Once you have a layout, start dreaming about what your walkway will look like.  Sometimes, a physical layout can help you visualize this.  For example, if you are doing a curved pathway, use a garden hose to represent the edge of the path.  If you're going to use garden stones, get some cardboard and cut out some shapes.

zomfibame1 year ago
Nice patern
kenbob3 years ago
Beautiful!
Asmodeous3 years ago
NIce work dude!
tbcross3 years ago
nice job I like the design :) great ible.
Pkranger88 (author)  tbcross3 years ago
Thank you!
mickeypop3 years ago
Great work - love the pattern.

We built a flag stone version about 20 years ago.
Over time he stone "crawled" eventually needing some rework.

Here is a little trick i learned then.

When preping, mix concrete into the sand (DRY).
After placing all of the stone and checking it is all level,
just turn on the sprinkler for around 20 minutes to set it

Mostly dry cured concrete is always the best.

works great and no "crawl"
emorning3 years ago
First... Thanks for taking the time to write this up and take pictures. The picture of the edging and its position on top of the gravel/sand helped me understand this part of the process that I couldn't find elsewhere.

One question though... In the last photo of the completed path I see small triangular pavers along the edge. Did you buy those? Or did you have to cut those?
Pkranger88 (author)  emorning3 years ago
I added a photo in step 2. This paver has a canted square at the end of the elongated hex. I simply cut the triangle off the stone and glued it to the other end. I rented a stone saw for about $50.
Shiseiji3 years ago
Great!
FYI, any pin (vs. threaded) type fastener over 6" is generally considered a spike.
Love the pattern.
Pkranger88 (author)  Shiseiji3 years ago
True, I called them nails, but it depends on the store you buy them from. Thanks for checking it out.
poorboy13 years ago
Nice job on the path! The design is uniqie, I like that! I also like your tractor.
Wow. Beautiful pathway. The layout shows a nice combination of artistic talent combined with extreme handyman skills. Nicely done! Great Ins too.
Notanexpert3 years ago
I think the your title was similar to something I saw on the Sims, in the description for the flooring.

Oh and nice path
karlgabel23 years ago
Nicely done! Great writeup and it looks great too!
Nice...

How would one do a curved pathway?
Any idea?
I'd recommend ye olde technique of a spray can and a stick. Draw out your curve and then lay the bricks to conform to that shape. It would only work for shallow curves and the pattern probably couldn't be too intricate though.
If however you have a lot of time you could devide bricks into segments and lay them out to follow the curve as tightly as you need. It would get quite tedious though!
Pkranger88 (author)  Greasetattoo3 years ago
A curved pathway would be done by:
Laying out the curves using an appropriate guide such as a hose, thin wood, etc.

If the stones are square, a straight line would be placed along the path somewhere to determine the orientation of the pattern. You would lay out the stones similarly to what I've demonstrated here, with the exception of the edge stones. The edge stones would need to be cut to follow the contour with a stone saw or masonry chisel.

If you choose a stone or shape that is more of a odd profile or shape you may choose to just edge the pattern with the edge of the untrimmed stone itself. In this case, you wouldn't necessarily use an edge strip as shown and the polymeric sand.

If you wanted an edge, I would lay out my stone pattern on the pathway or patio directly on the gravel and use a flexible edge, cut down to a shorter length, to edge my pattern in.

Then I would lay out my sand and finish the pattern similar to this instructable. Hope this helps.
kenbob3 years ago
Beautiful and well documented. I love the pattern, how did you select/design it?
excellent instructable!
Pkranger88 (author)  kenbob3 years ago
I found the stones on clearance at a local building materials supply. My wife and I played with a few designs/combinations for about an hour before we settled on it. I took a pic with my phone and started laying out dimensions.
nanosec123 years ago
in a word:

Beautiful !!!
ChrysN3 years ago
That looks great.