For more on San Francisco, see our San Francisco web page.

05/18/17 - San Francisco, First Day

One of our favorite walks in San Francisco is the climb up the Filbert Street steps. It starts in an alley and heads up a rickety set of metal and concrete steps. It turns into a staircase through a garden which offers wonderful views of San Francisco Bay. There were roses in bloom and nasturtiums everywhere. The climb tops out at Coit Tower which offers even more views of the city and bay.

A look down at the alley and the Bay Bridge

Staircase garden

More garden on a side street

More garden

Our first view of the Golden Gate Bridge

The view west with twisty Lombard Street visible

Looking back at Coit Tower

Another lovely garden, the Vallejo Street Steps

Another city view

San Francisco is full of flowers

The view downtown

Keywords: san francisco

05/17/17 - San Francisco, Second Day

We spent a good part of our day wandering San Francisco's waterfront from Fort Mason heading west past Crissy Field. There are some beautiful views, and it was a sunny weekend day, so the streets and parks were full of walkers, runners, sunbathers, kite fliers, bicyclists and others out just enjoying the good weather. We made our way to Fort Point under the Golden Gate Bridge, then we climbed to the bridge visitor center and started heading south along the Coastal Trail. According to the signs, the part of the trail that leads down to the sea was closed. Despite this, we pushed on a bit, but when the going got rough, we gave up and headed back.

That's Alcatraz in the distance

A view of the Golden Gate Bridge

A passion flower

Another view of the Golden Gate Bridge

Sea foam

A hummingbird: look closely for it's bright red feathers.

Another shot of that cooperative hummingbird

Yet another view of the Golden Gate Bridge - It is truly photogenic.

The entrance to an old bunker

Another cooperative bird

The grounds of the old Exploratorium

Keywords: san francisco

05/16/17 - San Francisco, Third Day

On our third day in San Francisco, we decided to resume our hike near where we had turned around the previous day. We took a cab to the Golden Gate Bridge visitor center and headed south. We ignored the warning about the trail being closed and headed down towards the Pacific along a surprisingly wild section of the trail. There were steps and boardwalks, and we seemed to be in a wilderness miles from any city.

If the signs had been right about the trail being closed, we would have had to backtrack, but we really wanted to hike this stretch. As it turned out, the trail was damaged, and technically closed, but as a number of hikers informed us, actually open. There was a well worn track around the barriers blocking the closed section of the trail. We joined the outlaws and continued our hike to Baker Beach.

We made it all the way down to Land's End where we hailed a Lyft car to get us back to our hotel. Lyft has made a real difference. One time we took a taxi back, and it took half an hour to get a ride. Another time we took a bus back, and it took 45 minutes for the 20 minute ride across town. San Francisco has a horrible bus system with stops every block or two. No wonder companies like Google are running their own bus systems here.

One of the many hummingbirds enjoying the weather

A view from the coast

Another view, south

The Golden Gate Bridge again, in one of its many aspects

A view of our favorite part of the trail

Yet another view of the trail and points south

Cormorants on one of the rocks

A view of the Pacific

Scud on Baker Beach

Good grief, yet another view of that San Francisco landmark

A peek into the city

Keywords: birds, san francisco

05/15/17 - San Francisco, Our Last Day

We didn't wander as far afield on our last day. We walked about along the Embarcadero, and walked out on our favorite wooden pier to give our feet a break.

The Bay Bridge from the pier

Emeryville, the actual port where ships load and unload goods

A good old fashioned doorway - That should show them.

A view from the pier

The pier

Keywords: san francisco

12/24/11 - San Francisco, Monterey and Big Sur

We've just returned from an adventure in San Francisco, Monterey and Big Sur. We got to see the city at its Christmas best and explore the natural wonders of the Pacific coast where the mountains go down to the sea. We also spent some time at the Monterey Bay Aquarium which is almost our home away from home, except that the feeding time food is for the birds.

For more on our trip:

San Francisco

Monterey and Big Sur

The Filbert Street steps

A San Francisco view

The Golden Gate Bridge

One of the new trails along the Pacific

Union Square at Christmas

Andrew Molera State Park

Another view from Andrew Molera

A ctenaphore at the Monterey Bay Aquarium

A sea dragon - we can watch these all day

Garrapatta State Park - Look for the Invasive Plants sign

Point Lobos State Reserve

Keywords: christmas, san francisco, trails

05/17/07 - Peashoot Season at Johnston Farm

The peashoots aren't much to look at. The plants are still pretty small, but the flowers are blooming, and the shoots are still tender. We didn't even know that peashoots were edible until we had them in dumplings at Yank Sing in San Francisco. Pea vines seemed too fibrous for easy eating, and it seemed a shame to eat the shoots and then not have any peas. Now, we know that the young tendrils and leaves are delicious sauteed in sesame oil or olive oil, or just steamed. We add garlic or asian chives or soy sauce for a bit more flavor, but they are very simple to cook.

We can wait for the peas, but the peashoots are here now. They'll be at the Farmers' Market very soon, so keep your eyes open, or drop by The Johnston Farm.

Keywords: farms, food, flowers, johnston farm, san francisco, farmers' market

02/18/07 - San Francisco Update - Clearing Our Plate

We have finally gotten around to posting our San Francisco restaurant reviews. We were in San Francisco back in December and January, and we have just been too busy to post anything about it, until now. And about time.

We hadn't been in San Francisco in six years. That's a long time, and things have changed. The great food adventure of the 80s and 90s seems to have vanished, and, to be honest, we were a bit disappointed with the food in one of our favorite food cities. Seattle is a much more interesting food town these days. In San Francisco, too many restaurants seem to be just going through the motions.

This isn't to say that one can't get a good meal in San Francisco. We had plenty, but something has changed. Read our San Francisco page for more, or check out the individual reviews: Boulevard, Dosa, New Asia, Nopa, Terzo, Ton Kiang, Tres Agaves, Yank Sing, Zuni Cafe, and Marinus in Carmel Valley.

Cable Car

There are also some pretty pictures of San Francisco, if you like that kind of thing.

Golden Gate BridgeFilbert Street House

Keywords: san francisco, restaurants, food, seattle