Saturday, April 29, 2017

A walk starting at the Ferry Building, then over Telegraph Hill and Russian Hill; and finally finishing at the Presidio: 29 April 2017

This ramble began at the Ferry Building and traveled northwest along San Francisco Bay via the Embarcadero, to the Levi Strauss headquarters building. The route then ascended Telegraph Hill via the Filbert Steps and the Greenwich Street Stairs. After which, the ramble continued to the Presidio of San Francisco, the conclusion of this walk.



The Southern Pacific Building is located on Market Street near the Embarcadero. The construction of the building began in 1916 and was completed in 1917. The property was the headquarters for the Southern Pacific Railroadit was the tallest steel-framed structure west of the Mississippi River at the time of its constructionClick on the image to see the full-size photo.

The distance traveled was approximately 5.2 miles (8.4 kilometers). The cumulative elevation gain was about 553 feet (168 meters). Mile markers are displayed on the GPS generated track. Click on the image to see the full-size map.

This photo was taken from the EmbarcaderoMarket Street Railway streetcar #1071 is traveling towards the Ferry Building. The final destination on its route is the Castro District. Click on the image to see the full-size photograph.

This is the corporate headquarters of Levi Strauss & Co. the manufacturer of Levi Jeans. The site is located on the east side of Telegraph Hill  Click on the image to see the full-size photo.

The east side of Telegraph Hill with the Filbert Steps leading the way to the top of the hill. Click on the image to see the full-size photograph.

This is Julius' Castle, it is San Francisco Landmark #121 and is sited below the summit of Telegraph HillThe view is looking north. Click on the image to see the full-size photograph.

The Filbert Steps are steep and beautiful. Click on the image to see the full-size photo.

This is a view of Nob Hill as seen from the summit of Telegraph Hill. The view is looking southwest. Click on the image to see the full-size photograph.

Here is a vista of Russian Hill as seen from Filbert Street on Telegraph Hill. The view is looking west. Click on the image to see the full-size photo.

Saints Peter and Paul Church is located on Filbert Street adjacent to Washington Square Park. This is the church where baseball legend Joe DiMaggio's life story was recorded. 
DiMaggio married actress Dorothy Arnold at Saints Peter and Paul Church on 19 November 1939; 20,000 well-wishers jammed the streets during the wedding ceremony. They had a son on 23 October 1941 and were divorced in 1944. 
On 14 January 1954, DiMaggio and Marilyn Monroe eloped at San Francisco City Hall. After the marriage at City Hall, Marilyn Monroe and Joe DiMaggio went to Saints Peter and Paul Church to be photographed together on the steps of the church. DiMaggio was still married to Dorothy Arnold as far as the Church was concerned, and thus he could not be married to Marilyn Monroe within the church. DiMaggio's funeral was held at the church on 11 March 1999. Click on the image to see the full-size photo.

 Washington Square Park was established in 1847. It is one of San Francisco's first parks. Here are a group of people doing their morning exercise in the park. Click on the image to see the full-size photograph.


The Tons of Bubbles Laundromat is located on Russian Hill at the corner of Jones Street and Filbert Street. The business was started by Deanna Caprini on 21 November 2004, her twenty-second birthday. She is still making bubbles, and money, at this location. Click on the image to see the full-size photo.

This is a view from near the summit of Russian Hill looking east down Filbert Street. Telegraph Hill is ahead with Coit Tower proudly occupying the top of the hill. Click on the image to see the full-size photo.

Here is a view from Russian Hill looking west. The Marina District and the Presidio are visible. Click on the image to see the full-size photograph.

The Palace of Fine Arts, located in the Marina District, was constructed for the 1915 Panama-Pacific Expositionit was designed by the esteemed architect Bernard Maybeck (1862-1957). Bernard Maybeck moved to Berkeley, California in 1892, and was a professor at the University of California, Berkeley. Click on the image to see the full-size photograph.

 PresidiGo Shuttle is a free bus transportation system which became operational recently. The shuttle was authorized by the Presidio Trust. This picture was taken from a PresidiGo Shuttle bus as it heads from the Presidio of San Francisco to downtown San Francisco. The bus is now traveling east on Lombard Street. Russian Hill is ahead. Click on the image to see the full-size photo.

This graph shows the elevation changes encountered during the walk. Click the image to see the full-size chart.

Bay Area Rapid Transit recently inaugurated a new train station on the BART system. The Warm Springs/South Fremont BART Station became operational on 25 March 2017. This new version of the BART route map illustrates the location of the new station. Click on the image to see the full-size photograph.

“A camera is a tool for learning how to see without a camera.” -Dorothea Lange


The first volume of the San Francisco Bay Area Photo Blog contains galleries of photographs that were posted on the Internet between 2002 and 2011. Click Here to view those photo galleries.

Panasonic GX7 camera body mounted with an Olympus 17mm lens was used to take these photographs.

Question or comment? I may be reached at neil@mishalov.com

Thursday, April 20, 2017

A Caltrain ride to Palo Alto, including a view of Steve Jobs' home: 20 April 2017

This journey started at the San Francisco Caltrain station at 4th and King Street and finished at the Caltrain California Avenue station in Palo Alto. From there it was a short walk to view Steve Jobs' (1955-2011) Palo Alto home for the last twenty years of his life. I then walked through the Old Palo Alto neighborhood and the Professorville Historic District in Palo Alto. I continued walking north through Palo Alto, and into Menlo Park, the corporate headquarters of Facebook. At the Menlo Park Caltrain Station, I boarded a train going to San Francisco. 
I did not, however, take the train all the way to San Francisco. Rather, I took Caltrain to the City of Millbrae's fourteen-year-old Intermodal Terminal which is a train station for both Caltrain and BART trains. I switched to a BART train in Millbrae and took it to the 24th Street Mission BART station located in the heart of San Francisco's Mission District. I went upstairs to ground level and had lunch. Then it was back underground for the train ride home.


In 1989, Steve Jobs met his future wife, Laurene Powell, when he gave a lecture at the Stanford Graduate School of Business where she was a student. After the speech, Jobs met up with her and invited her out to dinner. Jobs and Powell married in March of 1991. Jobs and Powell moved to this house in Palo Alto in 1991Their first child, Reed, was born in September 1991; they had two more children, Erin, born in August 1995, and Eve, born in 1998. Jobs died in this house on 5 October 2011. The house is still owned by the Jobs family. Click on the image to see the full-size photograph.

The distance traveled by Caltrain from San Francisco to the California Avenue station in Palo Alto was about 32 miles (51.5 kilometers). Mile markers are displayed every two miles on the GPS generated track. Click on the image to see the full-size map.


San Francisco's 4th and King Street Caltrain station. Click on the image to see the full-size photo.

Boarding the train at San Francisco's 4th and King Street Caltrain station. Click on the image to see the full-size photograph.

All Aboard! Click on the image to see the full-size photo.

San Mateo Caltrain station as seen from the train. Click on the image to see the full-size photograph.

Menlo Park Caltrain station as seen from the train. Click on the image to see the full-size photo.

 Palo Alto University Avenue Caltrain station. Yes, this picture was also taken from the train. Click on the image to see the full-size photograph.

Palo Alto's California Avenue Caltrain station. This is where the walk began. Click on the image to see the full-size photo.

A home in the Old Palo Alto neighborhood. Click on the image to see the full-size photograph.

Another home in the Old Palo Alto neighborhood. Click on the image to see the full-size photo.

This home is located in the Professorville Historic District of Palo Alto. Click on the image to see the full-size photograph.

The distance rambled was approximately 4.3 miles (6.9 kilometers). Mile markers are displayed on the GPS generated track. Click on the image to see the full-size map.


“A camera is a tool for learning how to see without a camera.” -Dorothea Lange



The first volume of the San Francisco Bay Area Photo Blog contains galleries of photographs that were posted on the Internet between 2002 and 2011. Click Here to view those photo galleries.

Panasonic GX7 camera body mounted with an Olympus 17mm lens was used to take these photographs.

Question or comment? I may be reached at neil@mishalov.com

Friday, April 14, 2017

San Francisco's Hawk Hill is an impressive sand dune located in the Forest Hill neighborhood: 14 April 2017

For thousands of years, strong winds from the Pacific Ocean blew sand from the ocean onto what is now known as San Francisco. This natural behavior created many sand dunes to multiply and grow on the San Francisco peninsula. Hawk Hill is a massive dune located approximately two miles east of the ocean's shoreline. The hill has a maximum elevation of about 650 feet. Hawk Hill's naturally eroding sand was always replenished with sand blown across what is now known as the Sunset District

The Outside Lands of San Francisco became populated after the earthquake of 1906. Beginning in the early Twentieth Century the sand dunes of the Outside Lands, now known as the Sunset District and the Richmond District, have been bulldozed, paved over with asphalt, covered in concrete, and encased with wooden structures. This new reality left no naturally available source of windblown sand to restore the sand erosion occurring on Hawk Hill. 

Hawk Hill is an ecologically sensitive area located on the westerly side of the Forest Hill neighborhood. The shifting sands on the hill support a wide variety of dune plants. There are no trail signs nor entry signs at Hawk Hill; public access to Hawk Hill is discouraged by the City and County of San Francisco.


A view from Hawk Hill, looking west. Buildings in the Sunset District are visible. Click on the image to see the full-size photograph.

As I was walking through the Forest Hill neighborhood on my way to Hawk Hill, I passed by this house on Magellan Avenue. The house was the childhood home of Jerry Brown, the current governor of the State of California. Jerry Brown’s father Edmund “Pat” Brown was born in San Francisco in 1905. He attended Lowell High School, as did his wife, Bernice Layne. They had four children, three girls, and a boy; the children were all born in San Francisco. Pat Brown was elected District Attorney of the City and County of San Francisco in 1943. He was subsequently elected Attorney General of California in 1950. Pat Brown was then elected governor of California in 1959. He served two terms as governor, from 1959 to 1967.

Edmund Gerald "Jerry" Brown Jr., the only son of Bernice and Pat Brown, was born in 1938. He followed his father’s footsteps and went into politics. He served as Secretary of State of California from 1971-1975. He was elected governor of California in 1974 at age 36. Brown was re-elected governor in 1978. He then ran for the United States Senate in 1982 and lost the election. Brown re-emerged on the political stage after he moved his residence to Oakland, California. Brown served as Mayor of Oakland for two terms, from 1999-2007. He then became Attorney General of California from 2007 to 2011. Jerry Brown decided to run for another term as governor of California in 2010. Brown won the election and was thereafter re-elected as governor in 2014. 

Cynthia Brown Kelly, Jerry Brown’s older sister, considered this house her home for almost her entire life. She was 81 when she died on 29 March 2015. Click on the image to see the full-size photo.

Okay, now on to Hawk HillThis is the Hawk Hill trail; the view is looking west. Click on the image to see the full-size photograph.

  This is another view of the trail, looking west. Click on the image to see the full-size photo.

A view from the trail looking at the Sunset District and the Pacific Ocean. The large building straight ahead is Abraham Lincoln High School. Click on the image to see the full-size photograph.

This view from the trail is looking southwest The green area in the distance, adjacent to the Pacific Ocean, was the site of Fort FunstonThe fort became operational in 1900; it was decommissioned in 1963. Click on the image to see the full-size photo.

This will be the last picture from Hawk Hill; the view is looking south. The mountain ahead on the left, with the antennas on its summit, is San Bruno Mountain. The mountain in the distance on the right is Montara Mountain. Click on the image to see the full-size photograph.

This photo was taken from Grand View Park; the scene is looking northeast. Downtown San Francisco is visible in the distance. The hill on the right is Mount Sutro, and the residential area below is the Inner Sunset District. Click on the image to see the full-size photo.

This picture was taken from 14th Avenue near Ortega Street. Ahead is the western portion of Golden Gate Park. The buildings closest to the camera are located in the Sunset District. The buildings on the far side of Golden Gate Park are located in the Richmond District. The hill on the far side of the Richmond District was the site of both the Fort Miley Military Reservation and Golden Gate Cemetery. The building complex on the high point of the hill is the San Francisco Veterans Affairs Medical Center. Please note that as recently as one hundred and twenty years ago, all of the lands that you see in this picture were wild, unpopulated sand dunes. In the distance is the mouth of San Francisco BayMarin County and Mount Tamalpais are on the far side of the bay. The view is looking northwest. Click on the image to see the full-size photograph.

The church, reddish in color, with the two steeples, is St. Anne of the Sunset Church. The construction of this building began in 1930 and the church was dedicated in 1933. The church has a complex and beautiful frieze on the exterior of the building. The sculpture was created by Sister Justina Niemierski. The view is looking northeast. Click on the image to see the full-size photograph.

A part of the frieze created by Sister Justina Niemierski. Click on the image to see the full-size photo.

Another portion of the frieze created by Sister Justina Niemierski. Click on the image to see the full-size photograph.

The distance traveled was approximately 5.1 miles (8.2 kilometers). The cumulative elevation gain was approximately 603 feet (184 meters). Mile markers are displayed on the GPS generated track. Click on the image to see the full-size map.

“A camera is a tool for learning how to see without a camera.” -Dorothea Lange


The first volume of the San Francisco Bay Area Photo Blog contains galleries of photographs that were posted on the Internet between 2002 and 2011. Click Here to view those photo galleries.

Panasonic GX7 camera body mounted with an Olympus 17mm lens was used to take these photographs.

Question or comment? I may be reached at neil@mishalov.com

Sunday, April 9, 2017

San Francisco, from West Portal to Edgehill Mountain; and then to the Mission District via Noe Valley: 9 April 2017

Of the many hills in San Francisco, seven are said to have been named at the time of the city’s founding: Nob Hill, Russian Hill, Telegraph Hill, Rincon Hill, Twin Peaks, Lone Mountain and Mount Davidson

In addition to the Pacific Ocean and San Francisco Bay, the hills are San Francisco's most prominent geographical feature. The same colossal forces that caused the 1906 and 1989 earthquakes have shaped the hills; the hills range in elevation from 100 feet to 925 feet. While most of San Francisco is built on sand, many of its hills stand on Franciscan or serpentine bedrock. 

Edgehill Mountain was once part of Adolph Sutro’s San Miguel Ranch. This property was sold by Sutro’s estate after his death in 1898. Edgehill Mountain then became one of the city’s first subdivisions. 

The summit of Edgehill Mountain, 734 feet (224 meters), was leveled, and houses were constructed on and adjacent to the summit. Houses were also built on the mountain's western and southern slopes. Serious problems with building on this land began in 1953 when winter rains caused a home to slide down the western mountain side. Edgehill Mountain Park was established in 1985 when the city purchased 1 acre of the mountain’s undeveloped, western slope and designated the area an Open Space Park.

The unsettled question is how many hills are actually located in San Francisco? The answer to that question varies from seven to fifty-three, depending on what you read or to whom you speak.


Edgehill Mountain, 734 feet (224 meters), is ahead. The picture was taken from Dorchester Way; the view is looking northeast. Click on the image to see the full-size photograph.

This is a view of Mount Davidson, 925 feet (282 meters); it is the tallest hill in San Francisco. This picture was taken from the southern side of Edgehill Mountain; the view is looking southeast. Click on the image to see the full-size photograph.

This photo was taken from Edgehill Way on the northeast side of Edgehill Mountain. Twin Peaks are ahead, as is Sutro Tower; the view is looking northeast. Click on the image to see the full-size photograph.

This is a view from Garcia Avenue. The large rectangular buildings ahead are part of  Laguna Honda Hospital, a sprawling complex constructed in the early 1920s. The hospital’s history dates back to the founding of the city. The view is looking north. Click on the image to see the full-size photograph.

This photo was taken from Idora Avenue. Mount Sutro is visible; the view is looking north. Click on the image to see the full-size photograph.

This photo was taken from Woodside Avenue. In the distance, across San Francisco Bay in Marin County, is Mount Tamalpais, 2,572 feet (784 meters); the summit is sheathed in clouds. The view is looking north. Click on the image to see the full-size photograph.

Downtown San Francisco is visible in the distance. Trans-Bay Tower is still under construction and it already is the tallest building in San Francisco. This picture was taken from Portola Drive; the view is looking northeast. Click on the image to see the full-size photograph.



The mural 'I Still Have A Dream' is located on Twenty-fourth Street in Noe Valley. Click on the image to see the full-size photograph.

The distance traveled was approximately 4.8 miles (9.1 kilometers). The cumulative elevation gain was approximately 470 feet (143 meters). Mile markers are displayed on the GPS generated track. Click on the image to see the full-size map.

This chart shows the elevation changes encountered during this ramble. Click on the image to see the full-size graph.


“A camera is a tool for learning how to see without a camera.” -Dorothea Lange


The first volume of the San Francisco Bay Area Photo Blog contains galleries of photographs that were posted on the Internet between 2002 and 2011. Click Here to view those photo galleries.

Panasonic GX7 camera body mounted with an Olympus 17mm lens was used to take these photographs.

Question or comment? I may be reached at neil@mishalov.com