"The coldest winter I ever spent was a summer in San Francisco."
- attributed to but never said by Mark Twain
I'm back to window gazing from my perch in the East Bay and now that summer is nearly upon us the infamous fogs of San Francisco are beginning to appear. Out my window I can get three different views of the grey shroud that is summer around the Bay. As I have mentioned previously, directly out my window about ten miles away is the Golden Gate. Yes, there is a bridge there now but long before the two towers of the span were erected the gap was known as the Golden Gate. It is the narrowing that separates the pacific ocean from San Francisco Bay. Through the gates can pour fog at a pace that literally fills the Bay. Now SF Bay is over 60 miles long and I can see over 50 miles of that length from my window. So the effect of the fog on the surface is never quite the same. How far will it creep today? How can it move so fast? And where might an cargo ship pop out of the fog?
Then to the immediate north of the Gate are Sausalito and the Marin headlands that rise up to 2500 feet at Mt. Tamalpais. When the fog comes up and over the headlands that means a big fog bank is rolling in from the north. Since the sun is setting way up to the north these days, the sunsets take on some interesting shades of pale. More of a sunglow than a sunset.
The south side of the Golden Gate is the City at the tip of the San Francisco Peninsula. There is a ridge that runs down the center of that big thumb of land. On the west side (the ocean side) are the Sunset and Richmond districts of the City. The temperature is always cooler out there, often 10-15 degrees cooler than downtown and as much as 20-30 cooler than over here in Berkeley. But from my vantage point the buildings of downtown San Francisco, Coit Tower and the Sutro Tower on Twin Peaks are what the creeping fog can slowly swallow when it creeps up & over the peninsula divide.
All this weather means a daily summer time viusal treat from mother nature. I wish you could see it. Come visit sometime.