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Leg Day

I walked/ran well over 10 miles today - which is not the most distance I've done in one day by a long shot - but today was certainly a leg day, and I'll feel it tomorrow. Today was filled with what I could say are 3 mini-adventures through Marin and San Francisco, which is more than I bargained for! I also took several pictures today.


Yesterday (Friday, April 5) I asked my good friend Remy if he was interested in a hike on Mt. Tamalpias (Mt. Tam) on Saturday. Unfortunately, I didn't get a reply, but I'd been itching to go out for a hike anyway so I decided I would still go regardless. I wanted to do an early morning hike in case there were going to be large crowds. It's not always easy to get parking and I wanted to make sure I didn't make my hike longer than it needed to be. (Remember this for later!)

Act I: Tam Trek

I got up before 8 and left my apartment around 8:30. The weather was great, except that it was freezing cold!

In California, "freezing" means in the 40's F.

However, I was stubborn enough to drive to Mt. Tam with the top down in the Miata. The heater was on full blast and I was bundled up with my jacket, so the ride was quite bearable. Luckily, parking was easy to find and I started my mostly uneventful hike on Temelpa trail around 9:15. I passed a few hikers on the way up but it was empty for the most part, and oddly meditative.

As I was nearing the top, I got a phone call, from Remy! I decided that a rest stop was in order, so I stopped to chat for a bit and decided to meet up in San Francisco! It seemed like a rather perfect plan, since I was already in southern Marin County, and SF was only a hop, skip, and jump away.

As I neared the peak, all of a sudden many more hikers and bikers appeared. I wonder where they came from? I took a boat load of pictures, and found a great rock to sit on to have a snack and rest. As I waited, more and more hikers were showing up and it was starting to get pretty crowded at the peak, so I suppose I arrived at the perfect time. However, I got to pet some dogs so it made it worth it. After several more pictures, I began my descent. The trail itself was weathered down, making it a little sketchy, but I still made incredible time down the mountain. After 5 miles and 1,800 ft of elevation, the hike was over. My Miata was still there in one piece where I left it, and started the drive towards the Golden Gate.

Act II: Bridge Ballad

There is in fact a tiny parking lot on the Marin side of the Golden Gate Bridge, but I didn't even bother checking it out because at this point it's around noon, and tourists and locals are out and about. I drove to the Bay Area Discovery Museum with the intention of hiking up to the bridge to walk across.

Unfortunately, I did not have a way to charge my phone, so I did not want to waste battery recording this on Strava - but according to Google Maps, this was an additional 4 miles and +250 ft of elevation gain.

This was the first time I'd ever crossed the bridge on foot and it was a super cool experience. Turns out, one side of the bridge is meant only for bikers while the other side is reserved for pedestrians. Nice! I had to take a small walking tunnel underneath the bridge to get to the other side. Of course I saw a couple bikers on the pedestrian side anyway. I don't know how, or why, they found themselves on this side.

I ran most of the span of the bridge but taking many stops to take even more pictures. The main pylons are absolutely massive up close, and the road noise was very loud. There was an ugly chain-link fence at the beginning, which I understand, but luckily it only spanned part of the bridge, making it easy to take more pictures after passing that segment. Though, it seems to defeat the purpose a bit.

Eventually, I made it to The City! While waiting for Remy, I explored the Golden Gate Bridge gift shop, which was filled with pointless (or pointy?) trinkets made in China. I was selfishly hoping that Remy would arrive soon, not to hang out, but to get lunch, as I was starving.

Act III: City Stroll

Remy came around and picked me up, and we drove to Fisherman's Wharf! Or at least, close to it. We still walked quite some ways. Again, I don't know how long. All I know was that I was absolutely starving and craving a SF staple - clam chowder in a sourdough bread bowl. My wish was granted.

After lunch, we went to the Musee Mechanique and saw a bunch of coin-operated machines and games, and afterwards we went to see the exterior of the USS Pampanito, a post WWII-era submarine. Then, we walked around Pier 39 a bit and saw the seals and seagulls, and went window shopping. I treated us both to ice cream. I got cookies-and-cream flavor, which turned out to be really good. The ice cream part was not actually vanilla - it tasted more like a sugar cookie. Totally worth the ludicrous price.

After pier 39, we went to a few more stores and then drove (phew, gave my legs a break) to Golden Gate Park to see the Dutch windmills and Ocean Beach. I had no idea there were a couple windmills in Golden Gate Park. There were several people picnicking at the windmill, which was a good spot to have a picnic. And we saw some surfers at the beach. I am clueless of how long I walked in total in the city, but I think it's safe to say it was at least another 2 or 3 miles.


Remy was nice enough to drive me all the way back across the Golden Gate Bridge to drop me off at my car. Thank you, Remy! We took a couple more pictures together, which was a perfect way to end the long day. I arrived home and immediately took a long, hot shower, which felt amazing, and then had a large pasta dinner.