You know I was on the lookout for some out of the way, unusual things to share with you all and one of the things I noticed was that there were several staircases mentioned as tourist attractions. What could be so interesting about steps?
Actually we have seen some pretty steps on our journey so far. The steps by Lombard Street, the steps up to Kite Hill, by the Ina Coolbrith Park, the rainbow steps by Ghirardelli Square and the steps leading up to the Esmeralda Slide.
But I had also seen some other special staircases so I went to find them for us. First up was the 16th Avenue Tiled Steps. This was a community project that was started in 2003 and finished in 2005. It is several sections and the tile design takes you from the sea to the stars.
After I got out of the car and walked to them I realized I didn’t have a mask on and there were quite a few people walking up and down so I just took a couple pictures and then left. So pretty though.
Then there are the steps at Lincoln Park. These are by Lincoln Park Golf Course and the Presidio. They are a lot wider than the steps at 16th Avenue and very pretty as well. The steps themselves date back to the 1900s. As you can imagine over the years they fell into disrepair and in 2007, Friends of LIncoln Park had the idea to repair the steps and transform them. In May 2015 the steps were officially opened. Aren’t they beautiful?
I don’t really know what the story was with the guy standing in the middle of the staircase. He was all dressed up in a sparkly costume and there was someone taking pictures of him and using a drone to take a video. I asked if it was okay if he was in my picture and he said it was but I only took a few. Interestingly, I took these shots and then we went to Lands End and the Immigrant Overlook, ate some lunch and when we were heading home we stopped by to see if the stairs were clear and he was still there! That had to be close to 2 hours later. At one point I saw him singing or something.
Finally, there are the Hidden Garden Steps. Tucked away between a couple of houses is this staircase. If you are not looking for it, you won’t necessarily see it, although there is a bench at the bottom to sit down.
The first time I went by the steps was right after I visited the 16th Avenue steps and this time I remembered to bring a mask but I didn’t walk all the way up because I had a lot of other stops to make and I had already climbed to the top of Mt. Davidson! I was disappointed about the Lincoln Park Steps being occupied so I had my hubby drive past the Hidden Garden Steps again and this time I was determined to walk all the way to the top!
There are 9 sections with 148 steps! A lot of the tiles have names and dates in dedication of people and families. The view from the top is nice but not spectacular. There were lots of trees and just the rooftops of the neighborhood. You couldn’t see the ocean or either of the bridges. I think they need that bench at the top not at the bottom! Looking down the stairs they look like ordinary tile steps. It was a lot easier going down than it was going up. I must admit that my legs were tired and I had to stop a few times on the way. I felt really good after making it up there though. Kind of helped me walk off the lunch we had. If I was thinking, I’d have told my husband to go around the block and pick me up at the top!
I struggled to find a second piece for the letter “S” since I didn’t want to use anything that started with “San Francisco” as I felt that would be too easy. Of course it was getting down to the wire (like this morning) and I still didn’t have anything. I could have just let it go since the steps are pretty amazing by themselves but I thought I’d give it one more shot. I was going to take a chance on the Sutro Tower but wouldn’t you know that today is such a cloudy day in the city that you can’t even see the tower and it is 977 feet tall!!!
I decided to go with my next choice, the Salesforce Tower. I had used part of that with “Q” as that is the picture that looks like a spaceship.
Fortunately the clouds were in the other part of the city today and I was able to navigate my way to a spot where I could park and take a couple of pictures.
The Salesforce Tower is overall 1,070 feet tall with a roof height of 970 feet. It is the tallest building in San Francisco and second tallest building west of the Mississippi. The top 9 stories of the building are actually part of an electronic art sculpture called Day for Night and using LED lights in the evening it features abstract videos of San Francisco filmed each day. I have seen it a couple times when I was driving in to pick up our son during the winter when he worked late but since I was driving, I couldn’t take any pictures of it.
There is a park that spans the street but you can only access it via a gondola from inside the building and I didn’t have time to get up there today as I was parked in a 5 minute zone for loading and unloading.
It has definitely changed the look of the skyline. This is my view when I drive in every day.
If you click on the link above for Salesforce Tower there are some pictures of the gondola to the garden and the led light show.
Whew! Made it through and it is only 11:30 AM my time! Now I have some typing and crafting to do so I’ll see you back here tomorrow for “T” I hope. I’m having a bit of trouble with this letter too. And you thought Q and X were the hard ones!