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Raised Deck Like Sidewalk

I live in a ranch style home with a full basement. I'm fortunate to have a door into my basement other than my garage door, that comes into the side of my house. Unfortunately the step out of that door is about a foot higher than the ground level, which runs gradually on down the hill from that point, and isn't very user friendly.
I contemplated pouring a concrete sidewalk beside my house running from the driveway, around by the door, and on to the backyard (where I have been needing to put a gate in my fence anyway), but I think aesthetically, since this is the side of the house you see as drive into the neighborhood, it would look terrible... and also it would have to go over the water line into the house, which may cause problems in the future.
My thoughts were doing a deck like sidewalk structure instead and even possible putting the fake stone facade on the outside edge between the top board and ground, but I have questions/concerns. 1. How deep would I need to dig my footers for my posts? I recently put in a fence and digging the holes to 28" deep about killed me, with the last 12" being the worse. 2. How would I go about building this with the board that should go against the house for the top boards to go across? Instead of putting it between my posts and house could I put it on the outside of my posts (away from the house)?
Any help anyone has, guidance or place to find reference material would be helpful. I can find info on decks, but nothing like this.

Re: Raised Deck Like Sidewalk

I think there are many better choices for a sidewalk, you could put down brick or concrete pavers, for these all you have to do is put down a gravel base, no cement or footings, you could put in a path of crushed stone or crushed granite, hope this helps?

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