Bad weather changed our weekend plans to expand on the South Bay loop we’ve been exploring. Saturday’s forecast predicted a 10% chance of rain and just our luck, it started to rain as we headed out. If a flat tire hadn’t postponed our ride out time, we might have been drenched en route.
We waited for the rain to clear. To avoid getting stuck in the freezing rain too far from home, we decided to explore some San Francisco hills. The green parts of the SF Bike Map & Walking Guide inspired us to ride from The Mission to Bernal Heights Park (200ft), Glen Park (400ft), Twin Peaks (800ft) and Buena Vista Park (500ft).
Starting near Dolores Park, we found our way to Bernal Heights southbound on Valencia St., East on Cesar Chavez St and South on Folsom. At the intersection of Folsom and Precita we looked at a 15%+ grade hill. We fumbled our way around Alabama, Ripley, and Folsom but I’m not sure we actually avoided steep climbs. (It was worth a try.) In the end, the climb wasn’t as bad as it looked. We rode into the park which overlooks the San Francisco skyline and the hills we would soon visit.
Looking for a good place to descend, we encountered a couple of staircases and carried our bikes down one of them to Gates St. Then we zigzagged south towards Richland to Chenery and headed to Glen Canyon Park. The last time I rode through Glen Park, my bike was fully loaded for a bike camping trip to Half Moon Bay. Even though I wasn’t carrying as much gear and had a faster bicycle this time, the climb seemed just as challenging. Lynn kicked my ass, as always.
We passed Glen park and rode up Portola to Twin Peaks. Twin Peaks is one of the places I take visitors from out of town to check out the amazing views of the city. This was my first time going by bike.
On the way up, we were impressed by a man who was jogging just as fast as we were riding. We made it to the top and along with many tourists, took a break to look over the city.
Northbound on Twin Peaks to Clarendon, we found ourselves at the base of some stairs that lead to Tank Hill. Tank Hill was the site of a drinking water tank from 1894-1957 and became a city park in 1977. We carried our bikes up the stairs to get a good view from the top. The somewhat rocky terrain probably wasn’t good for our cleats.
Yay, San Francisco!
I think the weather is keeping me from training like I need to. My goal for this week is to try a spin class. No excuses!