If you’ve hiked in San Francisco, you may have enjoyed the dense forests of the Presidio, Mt. Sutro Open Space Reserve, or Mt. Davidson. Or you may have relaxed along the plentiful lakes found throughout Golden Gate Park. But what you may not realize as you explore the city’s 70 miles of trails is that much of what you’re seeing is non-native-or even manmade.
Ever since the Spanish arrived in Yerba Buena in the late 1700s, the area has undergone a transformation from its native sand dunes, coastal scrub, grasslands, oak woodlands, and lakes and creeks. Today, it is thought that 40% of the flora in San Francisco are non-native.
Alex will discuss some of the major changes to San Francisco’s natural areas and the people who drove these changes including the US Army, John McLaren, and Adolph Sutro. She’ll discuss a few success stories for habitat restoration, and a few places where you can still see San Francisco’s landscape in its original state. And why no San Francisco hiking guide is complete without including Mt Tamalpais.
Registration highly recommended. Click here to register.
About Alex Kenin
I’m Alexandra Kenin and I’m the founder of Urban Hiker SF. Originally from New Jersey, I’ve lived up and down the East Coast in New York, Philadelphia, and Washington, DC. While living in New York in 2004, I took a vacation to San Francisco and realized I didn’t want to come home.
It took three years, but I finally moved to San Francisco in 2007. When I bought my one-way ticket out west, my father bought me a copy of Adah Bakalinsky’s Stairway Walks in San Francisco. At the time, I was a marketing manager at Google and would commute up to three hours a day. On weekends, inspired by the Stairway Walks book, I would take off to explore my new home on foot. One fateful day, a native San Franciscan friend brought me on a walk to the Embarcadero via the Vallejo and Filbert Street Steps. I loved the views from by the stairways, I loved the exercise I got from climbing them, and I loved how they seemed to be a secret to most. From that moment on, I was hooked on urban hiking.
Since then, I have fallen into an entire band of urban hiking enthusiasts. A group of us now goes on monthly day hikes – up to 30 miles in distance. We love finding new secret spots in the city and now I want to share our findings with you!