September events and updates

Here’s the latest from our September newsletter.

Map Updates

The Crosstown Trail is not signed, so our maps, cue sheets, and app are your best bet for enjoying the trail. We recently updated everything, to include a few small tweaks based on feedback. And some have asked for a GPX file, which is now available too. Get the latest versions on our website:


Here are some events along the trail this month. And some things you may want to have.

Laguna Honda Community Trails Grand Opening

Join SF Urban Riders for a ribbon cutting ceremony followed by a family friendly party. Meet the trail makers, enjoy some entertainment, and more.

10:00 AM – 1:00 PM. Saturday September 28th.
Laguna Honda Hospital, 375 Laguna Honda Blvd
Opening Details & RSVP

Kimchi Workshop at the Visitacion Valley Greenway 9/28

Learn how to safely make kimchi at home in the Vistiacion Valley Greenway Community Garden.

Saturday 9/28, 10-11:30
FREE, but space is limited.
RSVP to:

Shaping SF Public Talk: Neighborhood Corridors—Memory & Ecology

Ever wonder how the many green spaces in the city come to life? Come to this Shaping SF Talk, which will include stories of the Visitacion Valley Greenway (along the Crosstown Trail) and more.

(Note: This talk was announced after the newsletter was released!)

Wednesday, September 25, 2019 at 7:30 PM – 9:30 PM
518 Valencia: The Eric Quezada Center for Culture and Politics
More details at Shaping SF

SF Bay Area Careers in the Environment

Are you young and interested in building an environmental career working in science, administration, hands-on stewardship, or education? Then this is for you! Network, share your experience and think about what path you will take toward a career you love. The event is outdoors and will be a fun combination of hands-on science, habitat restoration, conversations, and Q & A with youth speakers.

Sat, 9/21 10:00 – 2:00, 15th Ave & Quintara St
Career Event Details & RSVP

Volunteer Opportunities

Want to volunteer along the route? Some ways you can help:
* Laguna Honda Community Trail System work with SF Urban Riders, every 2nd Saturday of the month (details) .
* Nature in the City works on the Green Hairstreak Corridor every third Saturday of the month, in addition to other projects at places such as the Alemany Farm adjacent to the trail. (Calendar)
* The Visitacion Valley Greenway will hold its monthly third Saturday garden project, 10AM – 1PM. Meet at the Community Garden (near 141 Arleta Avenue). Contact Fran Martin if interested.

Get a shirt or a cap

The first batch of T-shirts was so popular, we got some more made. And some caps too.
If you’d like one for yourself, stop by

“The Walker’s Map of SF” now features Crosstown Trail

The Walker’s Map of San Francisco, by Pease Press, is a complete street map, with every trail, stairway, and park, plus neighborhood shopping areas, historic districts, MUNI routes, and scenic vistas.

The 2019 fourth edition adds the Crosstown Trail, plus new trails at Mount Sutro, Laguna Honda and Golden Gate Park. You’ll also find the regional trails the Crosstown Trails links to, including the Bay, Ridge, Anza, and Coastal Trails.

Stop by Mission Blue SF, Bird & Beckett Books, Green Apple, or Lands End Lookout. Also available online from Pease Press.

Bike ride July 14

Join us for a bike ride on the Crosstown Trail. This time we’ll ride Southbound. Start at the Lands End Visitor Center, then pass through GGNRA, Park Presidio Greenway, Golden Gate Park, Golden Gate Heights, Laguna Honda Community Trails, College Hill, McLaren Park, the Visitacion Valley Greenway, Little Hollywood, Candlestick State Recreation Area, and more.

“Mixed terrain” is the name of the game–some trails (mostly mild), roads ranging from freshly paved to not-so-freshly-paved, and paved pathways. There’s even some stairways, though there are always alternates to avoid the stairs.

Steady pace ride; be prepared to ride with minimal breaks, though we will pause at restrooms and water along the way as needed. Bring a water bottle and snacks, there will be breaks but no designated food stops.

Distance is about 17 miles and over 2500′ of elevation gained.

Meet at the Lands End Lookout Visitor Center at 10AM, Sunday July 14. RSVP and updates on Facebook.

Side trip: the Endangered Garden

The Crosstown Trail’s southern terminus is at the Sunrise Point fishing pier inside Candlestick Point State Recreation Area. This little-known park is worth exploring. If you’re willing to take a slight detour, you can visit the Endangered Garden, a concrete promenade created by public artist Patricia Johanson that pays tribute to the endangered San Francisco Garter Snake. The promenade continues along the shoreline to the Sunnydale water treatment plant. It’s worth the trip to check out the art and the view.

Following the main Crosstown Trail, you’ll safely cross Harney Way at a crosswalk. (Going north, this is how you leave the park; going south, this is how you enter the park.) But you’ll miss the Endangered Garden, a few yards west of the crosswalk. Feel free to explore it, but please do not attempt to cross Harney Way here. Return to that crosswalk to the east!

The alternative route below shows you how you can find the Endangered Garden, walking along the shoreline instead of the road, and return to the crosswalk.

Endangered Garden pathway, just west of the main Crosstown Trail.
The Endangered Garden promenade is an out-and-back side trip just southwest of where the Crosstown Trail crosses Harney Way. Map revised 11/25/19.

See also Getting to Candlestick Point for some transit tips.

Improve the Crosstown Trail (3rd Saturday)

Two of the highlights of the Crosstown Trail are the Visitacion Valley Greenway and the Green Hairstreak Butterfly Corridor.

Have you seen them? Want to help out? This Saturday is a great time to do so:

Visitacion Valley Greenway
Visitacion Valley Greenway

The Visitacion Valley Greenway will hold its monthly third Saturday garden project, 10AM – 1PM. Meet at the Community Garden (near 141 Arleta Avenue). Contact Fran Martin if interested.

Rocky Outcrop in the Green Hairstreak Corridor

Nature in the City works on the Green Hairstreak corridor every third Saturday of the month, in addition to other projects at places such as the Alemany Farm adjacent to the trail. Calendar and details.

Commemorative T-Shirts

We still have a few commemorative Crosstown Trail T-shirts! Buying a T-shirt is one way you can support the new trail. Please drop us a message (email crosstowntrail@gmail) if you would like a shirt — treat yourself or make it a gift .

Getting to Candlestick Point

Most sections of the 17-mile Crosstown Trail are easily accessible from public transit. The east end of Section 1 in Candlestick Point State Recreation Area is an exception. Sunrise Point is an 0.6-mile walk or ride from the park entrance, and the closest public transit stops are 1.0 to 1.7 miles away. Here are two routes of roughly equal length:

Google Maps marks the start of the Crosstown Trail by “Sunrise Point Fishing Pier.”

Via Bayshore and Arleta

Take the T-Third, 8, 8AX, 8BX, 9 or 9R to the Arleta stop on Bayshore Blvd. Walk east on Blanken Ave. and follow the instructions on the Cue Sheet for “Section 1 Hike South: Glen Park BART Station to Sunrise Point.” The total distance is about 1.7 miles.

You can shave 0.5 mile off this walk by taking the 56-Rutland bus east from Blanken Ave. and Bayshore Blvd. to the terminus on Thomas Mellon Drive in SF Executive Park. This bus runs approximately every half hour. Go downhill to Harney but don’t cross here! Turn left (east) 1 block on the north side of Harney to the 3-way stop sign and crosswalk. Cross Harney then follow the trail left 0.5 mile to the park entrance and another 0.5 mile to Sunrise Point.

Via Bayshore Caltrain

The Caltrain Bayshore stop is on Tunnel Ave. Turn left on Tunnel Ave and walk 2 blocks north to Blanken. Here turn right and follow the Section 1 Southbound Cue sheet, or if you’re lucky you can hop the 56 bus for a few stops to the east end of the line and walk from there.

Via Third and Gilman

The T-Third’s Gilman/Paul stop is also the 29 Sunset bus terminus. The walk to Sunrise Point from here is 1.6 miles. Head southeast 1.0 mile on the left side of Gilman Ave. The road turns south as Hunters Point Expressway. In about 1 block turn left at the main entrance to Candlestick SRA. Angle right on the park road, then left on a paved trail heading south. Bear left to reach the shore of South Basin, then turn right to follow the paved path 0.6 mile to Sunrise Point (keeping South Basin on your left).

To shorten the walk by 0.6 mile, wait at the 29’s Third and Fitzgerald stop (1 block north of Gilman) and catch a 29 departing “Inbound towards Baker Beach.” The bus loops east before returning west. Ride 8 blocks to the east side of Gilman Playground and disembark as the bus turns left on Gilman Ave.. Continue right (southeast) on Gilman 0.4 mile to the park entrance and follow the instructions above.

The 29 Sunset runs every 10-20 minutes from 6AM to midnight.

Returning from Candlestick Park via transit

The best route is to retrace the Crosstown Trail back toward Bayshore/Arleta via the shoreline path; cross at the 3-way stop to Executive Park Blvd. then left to join Blanken St. under 101. The 56 bus starts west from Thomas Mellon Way and Executive Park Blvd. at 1.2 miles, which may shorten your walk. To reach Bayshore Caltrain from Blanken St. turn left 2 blocks on Tunnel Road.

Alternately, exit Candlestick Park at the main entrance and turn right on Hunters Point Expressway and angle left on Gilman Ave.. You can catch the 29 at Gilman Park (1.1 miles), or walk all the way to Third to catch the T-Third (1.6 miles).

Via bicycle

Enter the park at the main entrance (500 Hunters Point Expressway). Bear right on the park road, then angle left on the paved paths to reach the water. Keep South Basin on your left and follow the path 0.6 southeast to Sunrise Point.

Alternately, follow the park road 0.2 mile to the last parking lot then turn left at the restroom to follow the southern paved trail 0.5 to Sunrise Point. The two paths join before the point.