I really enjoy city riding right out of my door, and one of my favorite rides is the loop through the presidio, ocean beach and up over Twin Peaks.
|Looking back over Crissy Field to downtown San Francisco|
After riding along the Marina Green, you enter the Presidio and start climbing up towards the bridge. The day was exceptionally crisp and clear and I couldn't stop taking photos! I felt like a tourist in my own town.
We continued on into Lincoln Park, passing the Palace of the Legion of Honor, but my photos were blurry. Then a descent onto the Great Highway. I haven't ridden here for a while and had forgotten how great the views are. The traffic was pretty light, bonus.
|Looking back towards Marin from the Great Highway|
Most SF city rides have some gritty riding along with the pretty riding, and this route is no exception. The gritty starts with the left turn onto Sloat near the SF Zoo. Sloat pretty much sucks, between heavy traffic, poor pavement and two nasty merges from the right. But if you get through the first 3/4 of a mile for so, there is a great new bike lane, which helps a lot. Once you make it across 19th Avenue, you get back to pretty (or at least pleasant) with the slow grind up Portola towards Twin Peaks. You can avoid Sloat by heading through Golden Gate Park then climbing Twin Peaks from the north side, but that route is much steeper. Plus, you miss the great views from the southern climb to Twin Peaks.
|Twin Peaks Blvd feels bucolic, except for the occasional Muni bus grinding up the hill|
After the left turn onto Twin Peaks Boulevard, the climb to the top of Twin Peaks is a lot of fun, and surprisingly short since most of the elevation from the beach has already been gained during the grind up Sloat and Portola.
|Big views on Twin Peaks Blvd looking south|
The views at the top were exceptional today! We hung out a bit taking in the view, then descended the windy road on the northern end. Lots of fun to descend, but a bit wet today so I took it easy. Then, we headed home through the Castro and Mission districts. What a great ride!
About 25 miles
1700 feet of climbing
|Map of San Francisco city cycling route through Embarcadero, Fisherman's Wharf, Fort Mason, Marina, Presidio and Lincoln Park|
|Map of San Francisco city cycling route from Lands End, Ocean Beach, Great Highway, to Twin Peaks and Mission District|