San Francisco – Everyday Insider (TM) Trip 22

Today’s post will be about the famous Twin Peaks section of San Francisco. This is the geographical, central hub of the City and the hills are an area of great natural beauty.

San Francisco has a long and varied history. It’s geographical features help give it bones and two of the most outstanding of the City’s original 7 hills are not much-changed from their original condition, over the centuries.

This is the chance to not only have the most amazing views of a world-class city and its metro area, but Twin Peaks give us a respite from all that urban business.

The pair of almost matched hills are side by side on a north-south access and narrow, windy Twin Peaks Boulevard goes between them. Unfortunately, San Francisco buses do not take you to the top of the winding road, although tour buses do go. The 37 Corbett Muni line stops near a path that runs up the hills on Crestline Drive.

Once at the top, there are more trails to take many San Francisco Hikes. The views are SO spectacular, when it’s not foggy, that people go day and night.

Twin Peaks are still home to many rare native species and even one endangered species and the sandy soil and scrub is what much of San Francisco used to be, when the Ohlone Native Americans gathered berries here.

When the Spanish came, they brought cattle, and that forever changed the botany of the part of the peninsula they occupied. Ravenous beasts ate or trampled the native flora and the Spanish wanted the more normal fodder grasses, which they artificially grew on the lowlands.

But, high up on these 900+ foot hills, the cows had more trouble climbing and producing devastation. So, in these hills, and on the Marin County headlands to the north of the Golden Gate Bridge, there are still vestiges of what local ecology used to be.

The Twin Peaks area is under the stewardship of San Francisco Parks and Recreation. But, for all the beauty, the people who come often produce more trash than the city can handle. Please do make sure that you take everything back down the hills. There are just not enough receptacles, and there are no bathrooms, either.

Those are just the facts. I do not think that they are good choices. I would have hoped that one of the places tourists come to see this amazing city would be better served, for them, and more importantly for the locals. But, for now, just do your part to help this amazing land.

The western side of the hills is always more cool and likely to be foggy, as that’s the side which faces the ocean. Twin Peaks is the meteorlogical divide for San Francisco. On the east side of the hills, is the sunny, moderate clime. However, it is always wise to bring a seriously warm jacket and a light jacket, if you have room for 2. It’s unlikely that you will not need one or the other.

More on this natural treasure next time.

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