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