So that’s just what Tucker and I intended to do.
Usually the non-direct route is where you find the magic--like these amazing trees that look to have spontaneously appeared out of a storybook.
With an island in the middle, though, the lake was more of moat than a proper lake. People in paddle boats rode around the waterway that encircled the hill while geese and ducks swam about and waddled along the sidewalks. I found a bridge to take us onto the island, and then we headed up to see the view.
There are trees everywhere—even on an island in the middle of a lake in the middle of the city. So views aren’t its primary purpose. It’s purpose is for you could be on an island in the middle of a lake in the middle of a city.
With so many trails to try, I didn’t want to just take the same route back—not even off this tiny hill. While our ascent had been up a dirt path that wound up the hill, our way down was much more steep, involving stairs, bridges, and even… a waterfall.
That’s why I love this city—and the entire Bay area. It doesn’t try to be anything it’s not and it lives in harmony in its own diversity. If one block isn’t your thing, just walk a few more streets over. If you’re not a forest person, go to the beach. If you’re not big on the ocean, drive over and check out the bay instead. If you’re in social mood, and want to check out some eclectic stores, check out the Haight; if you want to be alone, head over the bridge and wander about the Marin Headlands.
By the time Tucker and I made it back to our trusty steed, our feet had padded around for 6.5 miles. Had we walked in a straight line from Ocean Beach across the city, we would have been half a mile from Oracle Park, right on the Bay. But when we hike, it’s not about getting to the farthest destination possible; our journey is the destination. And there’s a whole lot more to experience between the beach and bay.