August 31, 2012 by joshonthebay
I was dragged almost kicking and screaming from my house by fellow blogger Jodie on Monday for a day hiking. Hiking involves exercise, so this is not something I looked forward to! We met on her hill, the biggest one for miles! The plan was to find the most interesting staircases in the city, yes staircases! These weren’t your usual staircases though, they led to amazing sights and were constructed of wondrous things!
We started in the Sunset District on a rare but welcome sunny day, the first staircase on our tour was this one:
It was decorated in 2005 by members of the local community whose names now adorn fish and bats in the mosaic. Fittingly it starts at the bottom in the ocean then works through land and into time as morning, day and night are represented before it heads off into space and eventually ends in the sun. After seeing this I was quickly convinced that staircases can be interesting and it was definitly worth getting out of bed for!
But the day didn’t stop there! We jumped on the 28 bus and headed up to the Richmond to get coffee before getting another bus along Geary Street to Land’s End. The ocean was a very welcome sight but before we could get to that we had to pass through the ruins of Sutro’s bathhouse! This was opened in 1896 by Adolph Sutro who had purchased most of the land in western San Francisco, it entertained those who could afford it for a few decades until it was eventually destroyed by fire in 1966 leaving these ruins:
Today you’ll find seagulls and ducks hanging out in the exposed pools whilst children and adults play on the old walls. I walked along one of the exposed outer walls and climbed down a few rocks to the beach. Above us the Cliff House restaurant looks out over the sea and ruins.
We continued walking around the trails towards the Golden Gate Bridge, mist coming and going as we made our way up and down hills, slopes and yet more staircases. The exercise was well worth it as some spectacular sights were taken in. My favourite spot was near ‘Painted Rock’ (currently closed due to safety risks) which allowed us to see over the bay, the bridge and out towards the ocean. The bridge itself pierces the landscape as you’re drawn further along the coast, however the natural beauty of the Bay captures most of your attention as well. I found myself walking around corners wondering if it could get any more amazing.
Check it out if you’re around San Francisco during summer/fall.