After spending Sunday inside (as wonderful as leading the beginners’ sitting at Zen Center was), I was keen to get outdoors on Monday morning. The weather did not seem to be co-operating. The forecast, though barely reliable in such changing conditions, indicated potential thunderstorms rolling in; the view from my windows, though not always reliable due to the low-lying location of the house, indicated fast-moving heavy clouds. A long bike ride didn’t seem to be a sensible option, much as I would have liked one.
The interesting detail for me was that the clouds were, unusually, moving down from the north west. Something about it made me grab my camera and a coat, and walk the few blocks up to Kite Hill, which I know to have good views across to the business end of the city.
Once up on the slopes, with a few relaxed neighbours and their dogs, I was happy to get a clear view of the weather, but then had an urge to get even higher. Twin Peaks beckoned, a short distance away, up steep streets and many staircases. I was very glad I made the effort.
At the top there were just a few hardy souls; I chatted with a student who had never been up there before, despite having lived in the area his whole life. I was wondering if I had ever been up there with a camera. Many times I have done the climb on a bike, and more recently, running, but only once can I remember walking up, and that was also a rather spontaneous decision, in the company of a French friend who was about to leave town.
Those of us who were on the peaks watched the rain moving over to the east, without getting wet ourselves; it was just about as dramatic as the recent times I had been up there, running and riding.
It would have been easy to plot a short downhill course home, but I was noticing the urge to keep going, and so I headed west to Mount Davidson, not really so far away either, to retrace the steps I had taken for my first visit. The rains had moved along, heading south along the bay, behind San Bruno Mountain. I had the place almost to myself except for a couple of people walking friendly dogs.
Once I had worked my way back to Portola, I knew I was done for the morning, and was happy to pick up a bus, even though I didn’t really know where it was going to take me – mostly in the right direction, as it happened, but I took a second bus to get over to the right side of Liberty Hill, back down to the sheltered valley.
Corona Heights and downtown from Kite Hill
Towards Hunter’s Point and the bay from Kite Hill
Rain passes over downtown from Twin Peaks
Diamond Heights and Hunter’s Point from Twin Peaks
A shower over the Mission
Liberty Hill and Bernal Heights from Twin Peaks
Mount Sutro, Twin Peaks and downtown from Mount Davidson
Across to San Bruno Mountain from Mount Davidson