Jon Crispin's Notebook

Sutro Baths

Posted in Architecture, Government, Landscape, Nature, Panoramas, Plants, Water by joncrispin on 15/02/2013

I am sitting in the San Francisco airport waiting for my redeye flight home.  This morning’s quick meeting with the team ended well.  I know know pretty much what I need to do in the next few weeks as far as printing goes.

I had yesterday pretty much to myself.  Around noon I met with an old friend from Ithaca, Katie Harhen and we ate a couple of dozen oysters in the Ferry Terminal and had a great time catching up.  She is a really wonderful person and has created a great life out here in the Bay Area.

I had been hearing about the Sutro Baths from the Exploratorium folks and Stephanie Bailey said it was her favorite place in the area.  I hopped on the Geary bus and after a long ride out to the western-most part of SF got to a cliff above the ocean.

I especially like the fact that except for a few spots one is totally free to roam around the ruins without having to be warned of imminent danger.  It is part of  a National Park, and for now the only areas that are closed off are to do with a river otter that has taken up residence.  (He wasn’t there when I showed up.)

There was a little tunnel through the rocks that was kind of eerie.  You could hear the waves crashing and in a few spots could actually see the water.

The ocean was a steely gray for most of the time I was there.

It was foggy and quite cold when I arrived and just as I was leaving at about 5.00, the sun came out.

The flora reminded me a lot of what you would see on the Cornwall coast.

It is a very special place.  And the gift shop at the top of the hill is way cool.  I got a great mug and a bunch of vintage postcard reproductions. It is always completely baffling to me how something as cool and popular as the baths can virtually disappear.  Check out some other links to the history of the place and be sure to visit if you are in the area.

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