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Set up a classroom discussion or a custom tour for your class or group.

Nov
1
Sat
2014
Presidio Creek Geek Hike
Nov 1 @ 10:30 AM – 2:30 PM

Thinkwalks presents an exploration hike:

Presidio Creek Geek Hike

 

Some creeks are so grand. Some are pipsqueak.

aerial view

Mountain Lake in the 1930s. Its west shore was filled in to accommodate Highway 1 bursting out of a tunnel.

Lobos Creek is the only major surface creek left in San Francisco. It’s big, supplying almost all the water to Presidio buildings with still enough left to gush to the ocean. Dragonfly creek and lots of unnamed creeks we’ll explore are cool, too. They help us understand what leaky San Francisco hillsides were like before development. We’ll see a major natural lake that supplies the creek’s headwaters. We’ll even dig into groundwater studies from the nineteenth century.

Highlights: drinking water out-take, sewer culvert that isn’t a sewer, treatment plant, Chinese themed mansion, Baker Beach, Coyote Gulch, hidden graveyard, invaded jungle, base commander’s mansion, historic community garden, native plant nursery, redwood grove, stone bridge, twin palms, ridge trail, leaky cliffs by the Golden Gate, rehabbed nature, invasive vines, dune boardwalks, Mountain Lake.

Come celebrate San Francisco’s spring-laced geography with this major water geek-out!

☆ RSVP required
↪ Rain or shine
↪ Bring lunch food (sharing tradition optional)
↪ Hike length: approx. 5.5 miles
↪ Steep hills, no mountains
↪ Ends at start location (loop)
↪ Maximum 20 people

Payment Scale

At the end of your Thinkwalk if you can’t afford the standard $25 please feel free to pay a lower amount.

Nov
4
Tue
2014
Mission: Water Walking
Nov 4 @ 1:00 PM – 4:00 PM

Thinkwalks presents an exploration walk:

Mission: Water Walking

 

Why is the Mission of San Francisco called ‘Dolores’? Yet, the city was called ‘San Francisco’!

Bronze plaque

We’ll debunk this bronzed (but incoherent) claim!

We’ll explore along water routes where creeks once flowed, before the city grew up. Some are still flowing, hidden. We’ll delve into both practical and political sides of local drinking water, sewers, wells, hydrants and reservoirs. In the process, you’ll find out how this place came to be a population center. Coolest of all, we’ll debunk SF’s founding lore (“Founded on a now-vanished freshwater lake”) and see how that myth came into being.

Highlights: sinking hotels, lagunas and arroyos, gas in the ground, old well data, The Willows resort, old photos, water tables, watersheds, Yelamu villages, forcible conversion, Chula alley, Captain Juan Bautista de Anza, Merrill’s mistakes, brutally wrong bronze plaque, Noachian Deluge.

Exploring the Mission District might just leave you awash in water history. Beware the floods!

☆ RSVP required
↪ Rain or shine
↪ Not vigorous exercise! You may get chilled if you forget your extra layers.
↪ End within a few blocks of where we started
↪ Maximum 15 people

Payment Scale

At the end of your Thinkwalk if you can’t afford the standard $40 please feel free to pay a lower amount.

Nov
5
Wed
2014
El Polín Spring Hike in the Presidio
Nov 5 @ 2:00 PM – 4:30 PM

Thinkwalks presents an exploration hike:

El Polín Spring Hike in the Presidio

 

Size isn’t everything.

People walking down a planted slope.

Newly rehabbed hillside above the spring.

Tiny little El Polín Spring, named for a phallus, was reputed to bestow fertility (twins) on those who drank it. We’ll take a look at the restored watershed, where a team of archaeologists discovered some surprises. Then we’ll hike over to Lobos Creek, the only major surface creek left in San Francisco.

Ever wonder what the landscape and creeks of SF looked like before urban development paved them over? What did a spring look like? And how does it emerge from the ground up there high on the hill? In the Presidio we can actually get a look at what was, because it still is.

Lobos Creek (the water supply for faucets in the Presidio) used to serve the entire early city as drinking water. It’s still in use. Meanwhile, it’s a natural creek flowing through a newly rehabilitated dune field. Then, strangely, it flows through a jungle environment and a Chinese-themed mansion.

 

Celebrate San Francisco’s spring-laced geography with this major watershed geek-out!

☆ RSVP required
☆ Rain or shine
☆ Bring snacks & water (sharing tradition optional)
☆ Hike length: approx. 3.5 miles
☆ Steep hills, no mountains
☆ Ends at start location (loop)
☆ Maximum 20 people

Payment Scale

At the end of your Thinkwalk if you can’t afford the standard $25 please feel free to pay a lower amount.

Nov
7
Fri
2014
Hot Air & Cool Water Walk
Nov 7 @ 9:30 AM – 12:30 PM

Thinkwalks presents an exploration walk:

Hot Air & Cool Water Walk

 

Copious water and hot air gush from openings around here. It’s Civic Center!

birds-eye view with passenger train in foreground

Hayes Valley in an early sketch

The original town of Yerba Buena at a small cove was far from here. When it became San Francisco it expanded like crazy. Where the library is now, there was a graveyard beside a marsh. Then it became City Hall. Then the UN Charter was signed here. Then everything!

Highlights: stories of the dome, relearning the underground river, freeway removal, Truth mural, Mona’s mural, Beaux Arts instead of Art Deco, 1906 explosions, book digitizing and dumping, plank road, missing dunes, the Jewish Korean center, Hayes Valley.

By looking around, you’d have no idea all this happened—and is still happening here.

☆ RSVP required
↪ Rain or shine
↪ Not vigorous exercise! You may get chilled if you forget your extra layers.
↪ End within a few blocks of where we started
↪ Maximum 15 people

Payment Scale

At the end of your Thinkwalk if you can’t afford the standard $40 please feel free to pay a lower amount.

Nov
9
Sun
2014
Hike Our Most Hidden Watershed
Nov 9 @ 10:00 AM – 1:30 PM

Thinkwalks presents an exploration hike:

Hike Our Most Hidden Watershed

 

San Francisco’s first major reservoir started as a natural lake and again has become just a lake.

Concrete walls

An empty Laguna Honda Reservoir after the 1906 quake.

This watershed on the west side of Twin Peaks near 7th Avenue has been through a lot. Sewers flow under the deteriorating concrete bottom of the abandoned reservoir at Laguna Honda. Muni Metro trains run under the creek. We’ll examine the secret back woods of the watershed where no official trails go. Recently, renegade trails have been appearing.

Highlights: springs, hidden tributaries, dunes, private neighborhood, WWII Victory Gardens, rail tunnel vent, SF’s first imported water aqueduct, water for Golden Gate Park, early development, artful hospital detritus.

Be prepared to visit sandy or muddy remote places, some not on any known map.

☆ RSVP required
↪ Rain or shine
↪ Bring lunch food (sharing tradition optional)
↪ Hike length: approx. 5 miles
↪ Includes a few hills
↪ Ends at start location (loop)
↪ Maximum 20 people

Payment Scale

At the end of your Thinkwalk if you can’t afford the standard $25 please feel free to pay a lower amount.

Nov
18
Tue
2014
Walk Deep in Manure & Park History
Nov 18 @ 1:30 PM – 4:30 PM

Thinkwalks presents an exploration walk:

Walk Deep in Manure & Park History

 

The Park was nothing but blowing sand until the manure arrived.

Where the pregnancy test frogs lived. And still may.

Today’s Golden Gate Park is a lush, sculpted garden. What a feat! For 6,000 years it was open dunes. There is one small woodland that’s been there for centuries, if you stretch the definition of “be.” We’ll explore how the park came to be. We’ll visit locations that are glamorous habitat for a pregnancy test frog. We’ll identify bits of a building that’s (strangely) eight centuries old. We’ll explore!

Highlights: dawn redwoods, native oak forest, horseshoe pits, quarries, velociraptor forest, Hearst’s ambitions, old zoo, first playground, earth moving stories, invisible multicolor bridge, fog & wind, the old Downtown of the Park, pedestrian passages, new nature trail, old photos, world’s fair of 1894.

Unearth how your Park was made, and make it even more yours.

☆ RSVP required
↪ Rain or shine
↪ Not vigorous exercise! You may get chilled if you forget your extra layers.
↪ End within a few blocks of where we started
↪ Maximum 15 people

Payment Scale

At the end of your Thinkwalk if you can’t afford the standard $25 please feel free to pay a lower amount.

Nov
20
Thu
2014
Randall Talk: Sky Phenomema
Nov 20 @ 7:30 PM – 9:00 PM

Thinkwalks and SF Natural History Series present:

A talk at the Randall Museum

Sky Phenomena

Joe Jordan will come back with new material after having really wowed and inspired us with his slides on this topic in 1997.

Joe will show pictures of all kinds of atmospheric phenomena, including rainbows, haloes, glories, aurorae, coronae, mirages, and the legendary (but real) “green flash.”  He’ll bring along some hands-on 3-D models (to go along with his descriptions and explanations) that might help us understand what causes some of these things, and where and when to watch for them.

Joe has recently focused his attention on the nature and science, and the technology and politics, behind clean energy (“sky power to the people”), and will regale us with some information and stories on all that, as an added treat.  The scientific basis for a big public-art sculpture idea will be part of this.

⭐ No need to RSVP—Just show up!

Nov
21
Fri
2014
Wiggle Walk
Nov 21 @ 1:00 PM – 3:30 PM

Thinkwalks presents an exploration walk:

Wiggle Walk

 

You thought you knew the Wiggle. There’s more to know!

group with Reservoir Street sign

Evidence of 1862 reservoir that’s no longer here beside Market Street. Who even notices the sign?

Yes, true, it was named the Wiggle due to the zigzag of bike route #30 through the neighborhood and avoiding hills. But how about the dunes? What of Martin Luther King? We’ll explore the ‘hood from this, that and askew angles: geology, activism history, water, native tribes, etc. There once was a spring here. Without it, the city would never have existed. There was also a green rocky mountain here. The top was chopped off—twice. In the 1960s, this unexpectedly radical neighborhood introduced a major glitch in California’s plan to pave highways everywhere. That twist created our current version of democracy.

Highlights: Market Street punched through rock, flume from San Mateo County, 1928 highway design, insanely huge floods, Yelamu village of Chutchui, old photos, linear dunes, first gay couple, black financial power, sharrows, freeway revolt, Bike Coalition history, Duboce mural, Captain Anza’s journal, photography innovations.

Thinkwalking is all about how the natural landscape determined the city’s shape. No place better to see that than the Wiggle.

☆ RSVP required
↪ Rain or shine
↪ Not vigorous exercise! You may get chilled if you forget your extra layers.
↪ End within a few blocks of where we started
↪ Maximum 15 people

Payment Scale

At the end of your Thinkwalk if you can’t afford the standard $40 please feel free to pay a lower amount.

Nov
24
Mon
2014
Divisadero Natural History Walk
Nov 24 @ 1:30 PM – 3:00 PM

Thinkwalks presents an exploration walk:

Divisadero Natural History Walk

 

A long dune field blew across the city. The ice age was over.

Amy in front of it

The valley along Devisadero (not a misspelling) was called ‘San Souci’ (that one’s a purposeful misspelling).

Alamo Square Park is an outcrop of rock (one of many) jutting up through the vast dune field. Like all of our outcrops, water springs up through the fissures, even at hilltops. We’ll explore places that were once lakes along Divisadero, springs along Fulton and ridges along Hayes. Those things happened since the Gold Rush, but we’ll look back farther, too.

Highlights: rehabbing park irrigation, San Souci Road House, shanks’ mare to the Presidio, the Central Valley pwns us, William Fell, Hebrew orphans, Hayes Creek, Hayes dune, old maps, fog & wind, viewpoint misspellings.

This, the shortest Thinkwalk we offer, will have a long-lasting effect on the way you view the city. You’ll start seeing things! (like the underlying landscapes!)

☆ RSVP required
↪ Rain or shine
↪ Not vigorous exercise! You may get chilled if you forget your extra layers.
↪ End within a few blocks of where we started
↪ Maximum 15 people

Payment Scale

At the end of your Thinkwalk if you can’t afford the standard $25 please feel free to pay a lower amount.

Nov
28
Fri
2014
Mt. Sutro Enchanting Forest Hike
Nov 28 @ 9:30 AM – 1:00 PM

Thinkwalks presents an exploration hike:

Mt. Sutro Enchanting Forest Hike

 

Deep within the city of San Francisco a forest grows.

Big orange shelf mushroom

Bizarre chicken-of-the-woods fungus seen on one Mt. Sutro expedition

It’s a complex one, overrun with invasive vines and other political drama. It’s incredible to hike through now that the Sutro Stewards have (recently) provided a working trail network. We’ll see hidden stairways, mysterious artifacts and even freshwater springs as we climb this wooded urban mountain.

Highlights: cave Indian mythologies, hidden creek, lost pond, university hideaways, weapons system sites, fog & wind, fungus, tree erosion sculptures, native plant meadow, birdsong.

Back in 2013, one couple on this Thinkwalk proposed afterward. Now they’re married. Talk about enchanting forest!

☆ RSVP required
↪ Rain or shine
↪ Bring lunch food (sharing tradition optional)
↪ Hike length: approx. 5 miles
↪ Some steep sections
↪ End near 7th Ave.—easy return by public transit.
↪ Maximum 20 people

Payment Scale

At the end of your Thinkwalk if you can’t afford the standard $25 please feel free to pay a lower amount.

Nov
29
Sat
2014
Transportation History Ride
Nov 29 @ 1:00 PM – 4:00 PM

Thinkwalks presents an exploration ride:

Transportation History Ride

 

Golden Gate park is a canvass on which the city’s ambitions were sketched.

San Francisco was the first major city on the coast. We’ll discover many firsts in the Park because it was where ideas were tested. The city’s history exactly matches the 160 years of transportation revolutions. We’ll see where a major railroad came right into the park, where the suspension bridge was first tried, where driver licenses were invented, why pedestrians were so feared, and we’ll even learn about street sweeping. This ride will include great discussions between short stretches of riding.

Highlights: Brooklyn Bridge in SF, the Northwest Passage, building roads on sand dunes, echo tunnels, fog & wind, abandoned 12th-20th century castle, racetrack, garage fight, elephant ambulance, old photos, mini eiffel tower.

Come ride around a park which was created out of a transportation challenge: too much horse poop!

☆ RSVP required
↪ Rain or shine
↪ Bring your bike!
↪ Not vigorous exercise! You may get chilled if you forget your extra layers.
↪ End within a few blocks of where we started
↪ Maximum 15 people

Payment Scale

At the end of your Thinkwalk if you can’t afford the standard $25 please feel free to pay a lower amount.

Nov
30
Sun
2014
Social Justice Mural Walk
Nov 30 @ 9:30 AM – 12:00 PM

Thinkwalks presents an exploration walk:

Social Justice Mural Walk

 

Street art is graffiti. Street art is mural art. Street art is a staple. Literally.

Bronze plaque

Visiting Collette Crutcher’s sculpted mural on 16th Street

Have you ever noticed the inadvertent collection of poster staples on a wooden pole from a hundred years of community outreach? We’ll explore the Mission. We’ll find random aesthetic drama, along with specific murals and other stunning street art. Joel was a mural organizer before he started Thinkwalks. In the interim, he studied how Mexico’s revolution in 1910 bled art all over San Francisco.

Highlights: earliest known mural, Benny Bufano sculptures, Chinese democracy, art revolutions, Maestrapiece, Susan Greene, CAMP, ‘The Apartment’ by Andrew Schultz & Aaron Noble, Politec paints, anti-interventionisma, Timothy Pflueger, Mona Caron, public painting techniques, Collette Crutcher, Ralph Stackpole, Lucia & Arthur Mathews, Rigo 23, Diego Rivera, socialist realism.

Thousands of murals tucked away in secret places await your inquiring mind.

☆ RSVP required
↪ Rain or shine
↪ Not vigorous exercise! You may get chilled if you forget your extra layers.
↪ Ends at start location (loop)
↪ Maximum 15 people

Payment Scale

At the end of your Thinkwalk if you can’t afford the standard $25 please feel free to pay a lower amount.

Dec
2
Tue
2014
Mission: Water Walking
Dec 2 @ 1:30 PM – 4:00 PM

Thinkwalks presents an exploration walk:

Mission: Water Walking

 

Why is the Mission of San Francisco called ‘Dolores’? Yet, the city was called ‘San Francisco’!

Bronze plaque

We’ll debunk this bronzed (but incoherent) claim!

We’ll explore along water routes where creeks once flowed, before the city grew up. Some are still flowing, hidden. We’ll delve into both practical and political sides of local drinking water, sewers, wells, hydrants and reservoirs. In the process, you’ll find out how this place came to be a population center. Coolest of all, we’ll debunk SF’s founding lore (“Founded on a now-vanished freshwater lake”) and see how that myth came into being.

Highlights: sinking hotels, lagunas and arroyos, gas in the ground, old well data, The Willows resort, old photos, water tables, watersheds, Yelamu villages, forcible conversion, Chula alley, Captain Juan Bautista de Anza, Merrill’s mistakes, brutally wrong bronze plaque, Noachian Deluge.

Exploring the Mission District might just leave you awash in water history. Beware the floods!

☆ RSVP required
↪ Rain or shine
↪ Not vigorous exercise! You may get chilled if you forget your extra layers.
↪ End within a few blocks of where we started
↪ Maximum 15 people

Payment Scale

At the end of your Thinkwalk if you can’t afford the standard $40 please feel free to pay a lower amount.

Dec
3
Wed
2014
Glen Park Loop
Dec 3 @ 10:30 AM – 1:30 PM

Thinkwalks presents an exploration hike:

Glen Park Loop

Some SF waterways never got buried.

Joel shows how to use a tire swing in Glen Canyon!

The creek at Glen Canyon is just one of the many excellent excuses to explore this remarkable neighborhood. We’ll go up and over the hill past rope swings with astounding views on hills named for historic goat ranching. We’ll walk a street called Penny Lane, find the hidden segment of Castro, and get into muddy side-tracks exploring a hidden wetland.

Highlights: daylighting creeks, Little Switzerland, new stairways, micro-vineyard, “Thirty Harry” (not a movie), brick circles, sidewalks springing natural leaks, Pony Express, Joseph Eichler homes, chicken farm, church garden, cops-in-training.

If you’ve dismissed this area because it has no Victorian beauty, you’re missing out on one sweet corner of the city!

☆ RSVP required
↪ Rain or shine
↪ Bring lunch food (sharing tradition optional)
↪ Hike length: approx. 5.5 miles
↪ Steep hills, no mountains
↪ Ends at start location (loop)
↪ Maximum 20 people

Payment Scale

At the end of your Thinkwalk if you can’t afford the standard $25 please feel free to pay a lower amount.

Dec
6
Sat
2014
Hike Our Most Hidden Watershed
Dec 6 @ 10:30 AM – 2:00 PM

Thinkwalks presents an exploration hike:

Hike Our Most Hidden Watershed

 

San Francisco’s first major reservoir started as a natural lake and again has become just a lake.

Concrete walls

An empty Laguna Honda Reservoir after the 1906 quake.

This watershed on the west side of Twin Peaks near 7th Avenue has been through a lot. Sewers flow under the deteriorating concrete bottom of the abandoned reservoir at Laguna Honda. Muni Metro trains run under the creek. We’ll examine the secret back woods of the watershed where no official trails go. Recently, renegade trails have been appearing.

Highlights: springs, hidden tributaries, dunes, private neighborhood, WWII Victory Gardens, rail tunnel vent, SF’s first imported water aqueduct, water for Golden Gate Park, early development, artful hospital detritus.

Be prepared to visit sandy or muddy remote places, some not on any known map.

☆ RSVP required
↪ Rain or shine
↪ Bring lunch food (sharing tradition optional)
↪ Hike length: approx. 5 miles
↪ Includes a few hills
↪ Ends at start location (loop)
↪ Maximum 20 people

Payment Scale

At the end of your Thinkwalk if you can’t afford the standard $25 please feel free to pay a lower amount.

Dec
7
Sun
2014
Walk Deep in Manure & Park History
Dec 7 @ 1:30 PM – 4:30 PM

Thinkwalks presents an exploration walk:

Walk Deep in Manure & Park History

 

The Park was nothing but blowing sand until the manure arrived.

Where the pregnancy test frogs lived. And may still.

Today’s Golden Gate Park is a lush, sculpted garden. What a feat! For 6,000 years it was open dunes. There is one small woodland that’s been there for centuries, if you stretch the definition of “be.” We’ll explore how the park came to be. We’ll visit locations that are glamorous habitat for a pregnancy test frog. We’ll identify bits of a building that’s (strangely) eight centuries old. We’ll explore!

Highlights: dawn redwoods, native oak forest, horseshoe pits, quarries, velociraptor forest, Hearst’s ambitions, old zoo, first playground, earth moving stories, invisible multicolor bridge, fog & wind, the old Downtown of the Park, pedestrian passages, new nature trail, old photos, world’s fair of 1894.

Unearth how your Park was made, and make it even more yours.

☆ RSVP required
↪ Rain or shine
↪ Not vigorous exercise! You may get chilled if you forget your extra layers.
↪ End within a few blocks of where we started
↪ Maximum 15 people

Payment Scale

At the end of your Thinkwalk if you can’t afford the standard $25 please feel free to pay a lower amount.

Dec
10
Wed
2014
Wiggle Walk
Dec 10 @ 1:30 PM – 4:00 PM

Thinkwalks presents an exploration walk:

Wiggle Walk

 

You thought you knew the Wiggle. There’s more to know!

group with Reservoir Street sign

Evidence of 1862 reservoir that’s no longer here beside Market Street. Who even notices the sign?

Yes, true, it was named the Wiggle due to the zigzag of bike route #30 through the neighborhood and avoiding hills. But how about the dunes? What of Martin Luther King? We’ll explore the ‘hood from this, that and askew angles: geology, activism history, water, native tribes, etc. There once was a spring here. Without it, the city would never have existed. There was also a green rocky mountain here. The top was chopped off—twice. In the 1960s, this unexpectedly radical neighborhood introduced a major glitch in California’s plan to pave highways everywhere. That twist created our current version of democracy.

Highlights: Market Street punched through rock, flume from San Mateo County, 1928 highway design, insanely huge floods, Yelamu village of Chutchui, old photos, linear dunes, first gay couple, black financial power, sharrows, freeway revolt, Bike Coalition history, Duboce mural, Captain Anza’s journal, photography innovations.

Thinkwalking is all about how the natural landscape determined the city’s shape. No place better to see that than the Wiggle.

☆ RSVP required
↪ Rain or shine
↪ Not vigorous exercise! You may get chilled if you forget your extra layers.
↪ End within a few blocks of where we started
↪ Maximum 15 people

Payment Scale

At the end of your Thinkwalk if you can’t afford the standard $40 please feel free to pay a lower amount.

Dec
12
Fri
2014
Transportation History Ride
Dec 12 @ 10:00 AM – 1:00 PM

Thinkwalks presents an exploration ride:

Transportation History Ride

 

Golden Gate park is a canvass on which the city’s ambitions were sketched.

San Francisco was the first major city on the coast. We’ll discover many firsts in the Park because it was where ideas were tested. The city’s history exactly matches the 160 years of transportation revolutions. We’ll see where a major railroad came right into the park, where the suspension bridge was first tried, where driver licenses were invented, why pedestrians were so feared, and we’ll even learn about street sweeping. This ride will include great discussions between short stretches of riding.

Highlights: Brooklyn Bridge in SF, the Northwest Passage, building roads on sand dunes, echo tunnels, fog & wind, abandoned 12th-20th century castle, racetrack, garage fight, elephant ambulance, old photos, mini eiffel tower.

Come ride around a park which was created out of a transportation challenge: too much horse poop!

☆ RSVP required
↪ Rain or shine
↪ Bring your bike!
↪ Not vigorous exercise! You may get chilled if you forget your extra layers.
↪ End within a few blocks of where we started
↪ Maximum 15 people

Payment Scale

At the end of your Thinkwalk if you can’t afford the standard $25 please feel free to pay a lower amount.

Dec
14
Sun
2014
Mt. Sutro Enchanting Forest Hike
Dec 14 @ 10:30 AM – 2:00 PM

Thinkwalks presents an exploration hike:

Mt. Sutro Enchanting Forest Hike

 

Deep within the city of San Francisco a forest grows.

Big orange shelf mushroom

Bizarre chicken-of-the-woods fungus seen on one Mt. Sutro expedition

It’s a complex one, overrun with invasive vines and other political drama. It’s incredible to hike through now that the Sutro Stewards have (recently) provided a working trail network. We’ll see hidden stairways, mysterious artifacts and even freshwater springs as we climb this wooded urban mountain.

Highlights: cave Indian mythologies, hidden creek, lost pond, university hideaways, weapons system sites, fog & wind, fungus, tree erosion sculptures, native plant meadow, birdsong.

Back in 2013, one couple on this Thinkwalk proposed afterward. Now they’re married. Talk about enchanting forest!

☆ RSVP required
↪ Rain or shine
↪ Bring lunch food (sharing tradition optional)
↪ Hike length: approx. 5 miles
↪ Some steep sections
↪ End near 7th Ave.—easy return by public transit.
↪ Maximum 20 people

Payment Scale

At the end of your Thinkwalk if you can’t afford the standard $25 please feel free to pay a lower amount.

Dec
15
Mon
2014
Divisadero Natural History Walk
Dec 15 @ 9:30 AM – 11:00 AM

Thinkwalks presents an exploration walk:

Divisadero Natural History Walk

 

A long dune field blew across the city. The ice age was over.

Amy in front of it

The valley along Devisadero (not a misspelling) was called ‘San Souci’ (that one’s a purposeful misspelling).

Alamo Square Park is an outcrop of rock (one of many) jutting up through the vast dune field. Like all of our outcrops, water springs up through the fissures, even at hilltops. We’ll explore places that were once lakes along Divisadero, springs along Fulton and ridges along Hayes. Those things happened since the Gold Rush, but we’ll look back farther, too.

Highlights: rehabbing park irrigation, San Souci Road House, shanks’ mare to the Presidio, the Central Valley pwns us, William Fell, Hebrew orphans, Hayes Creek, Hayes dune, old maps, fog & wind, viewpoint misspellings.

This, the shortest Thinkwalk we offer, will have a long-lasting effect on the way you view the city. You’ll start seeing things! (like the underlying landscapes!)

☆ RSVP required
↪ Rain or shine
↪ Not vigorous exercise! You may get chilled if you forget your extra layers.
↪ End within a few blocks of where we started
↪ Maximum 15 people

Payment Scale

At the end of your Thinkwalk if you can’t afford the standard $25 please feel free to pay a lower amount.

Dec
16
Tue
2014
Hot Air & Cool Water Walk
Dec 16 @ 1:30 PM – 4:30 PM

Thinkwalks presents an exploration walk:

Hot Air & Cool Water Walk

 

Copious water and hot air gush from openings around here. It’s Civic Center!

birds-eye view with passenger train in foreground

Hayes Valley in an early sketch

The original town of Yerba Buena at a small cove was far from here. When it became San Francisco it expanded like crazy. Where the library is now, there was a graveyard beside a marsh. Then it became City Hall. Then the UN Charter was signed here. Then everything!

Highlights: stories of the dome, relearning the underground river, freeway removal, Truth mural, Mona’s mural, Beaux Arts instead of Art Deco, 1906 explosions, book digitizing and dumping, plank road, missing dunes, the Jewish Korean center, Hayes Valley.

By looking around, you’d have no idea all this happened—and is still happening here.

☆ RSVP required
↪ Rain or shine
↪ Not vigorous exercise! You may get chilled if you forget your extra layers.
↪ End within a few blocks of where we started
↪ Maximum 15 people

Payment Scale

At the end of your Thinkwalk if you can’t afford the standard $40 please feel free to pay a lower amount.

Dec
19
Fri
2014
Presidio Creek Geek Hike
Dec 19 @ 10:00 AM – 2:00 PM

Thinkwalks presents an exploration hike:

Presidio Creek Geek Hike

 

Some creeks are so grand. Some are pipsqueak.

aerial view

Mountain Lake in the 1930s. Its west shore was filled in to accommodate Highway 1 bursting out of a tunnel.

Lobos Creek is the only major surface creek left in San Francisco. It’s big, supplying almost all the water to Presidio buildings with still enough left to gush to the ocean. Dragonfly creek and lots of unnamed creeks we’ll explore are cool, too. They help us understand what leaky San Francisco hillsides were like before development. We’ll see a major natural lake that supplies the creek’s headwaters. We’ll even dig into groundwater studies from the nineteenth century.

Highlights: drinking water out-take, sewer culvert that isn’t a sewer, treatment plant, Chinese themed mansion, Baker Beach, Coyote Gulch, hidden graveyard, invaded jungle, base commander’s mansion, historic community garden, native plant nursery, redwood grove, stone bridge, twin palms, ridge trail, leaky cliffs by the Golden Gate, rehabbed nature, invasive vines, dune boardwalks, Mountain Lake.

Come celebrate San Francisco’s spring-laced geography with this major water geek-out!

☆ RSVP required
↪ Rain or shine
↪ Bring lunch food (sharing tradition optional)
↪ Hike length: approx. 5.5 miles
↪ Steep hills, no mountains
↪ Ends at start location (loop)
↪ Maximum 20 people

Payment Scale

At the end of your Thinkwalk if you can’t afford the standard $25 please feel free to pay a lower amount.

Dec
20
Sat
2014
Mission: Water Walking
Dec 20 @ 9:30 AM – 12:00 PM

Thinkwalks presents an exploration walk:

Mission: Water Walking

 

Why is the Mission of San Francisco called ‘Dolores’? Yet, the city was called ‘San Francisco’!

Bronze plaque

We’ll debunk this bronzed (but incoherent) claim!

We’ll explore along water routes where creeks once flowed, before the city grew up. Some are still flowing, hidden. We’ll delve into both practical and political sides of local drinking water, sewers, wells, hydrants and reservoirs. In the process, you’ll find out how this place came to be a population center. Coolest of all, we’ll debunk SF’s founding lore (“Founded on a now-vanished freshwater lake”) and see how that myth came into being.

Highlights: sinking hotels, lagunas and arroyos, gas in the ground, old well data, The Willows resort, old photos, water tables, watersheds, Yelamu villages, forcible conversion, Chula alley, Captain Juan Bautista de Anza, Merrill’s mistakes, brutally wrong bronze plaque, Noachian Deluge.

Exploring the Mission District might just leave you awash in water history. Beware the floods!

☆ RSVP required
↪ Rain or shine
↪ Not vigorous exercise! You may get chilled if you forget your extra layers.
↪ End within a few blocks of where we started
↪ Maximum 15 people

Payment Scale

At the end of your Thinkwalk if you can’t afford the standard $40 please feel free to pay a lower amount.

Dec
24
Wed
2014
Social Justice Mural Walk
Dec 24 @ 1:30 PM – 4:00 PM

Thinkwalks presents an exploration walk:

Social Justice Mural Walk

 

Street art is graffiti. Street art is mural art. Street art is a staple. Literally.

Bronze plaque

Visiting Collette Crutcher’s sculpted mural on 16th Street

Have you ever noticed the inadvertent collection of poster staples on a wooden pole from a hundred years of community outreach? We’ll explore the Mission. We’ll find random aesthetic drama, along with specific murals and other stunning street art. Joel was a mural organizer before he started Thinkwalks. In the interim, he studied how Mexico’s revolution in 1910 bled art all over San Francisco.

Highlights: earliest known mural, Benny Bufano sculptures, Chinese democracy, art revolutions, Maestrapiece, Susan Greene, CAMP, ‘The Apartment’ by Andrew Schultz & Aaron Noble, Politec paints, anti-interventionisma, Timothy Pflueger, Mona Caron, public painting techniques, Collette Crutcher, Ralph Stackpole, Lucia & Arthur Mathews, Rigo 23, Diego Rivera, socialist realism.

Thousands of murals tucked away in secret places await your inquiring mind.

☆ RSVP required
↪ Rain or shine
↪ Not vigorous exercise! You may get chilled if you forget your extra layers.
↪ Ends at start location (loop)
↪ Maximum 15 people

Payment Scale

At the end of your Thinkwalk if you can’t afford the standard $25 please feel free to pay a lower amount.

Dec
25
Thu
2014
Wiggle Walk
Dec 25 @ 1:30 PM – 4:00 PM

Thinkwalks presents an exploration walk:

Wiggle Walk

 

You thought you knew the Wiggle. There’s more to know!

group with Reservoir Street sign

Evidence of 1862 reservoir that’s no longer here beside Market Street. Who even notices the sign?

Yes, true, it was named the Wiggle due to the zigzag of bike route #30 through the neighborhood and avoiding hills. But how about the dunes? What of Martin Luther King? We’ll explore the ‘hood from this, that and askew angles: geology, activism history, water, native tribes, etc. There once was a spring here. Without it, the city would never have existed. There was also a green rocky mountain here. The top was chopped off—twice. In the 1960s, this unexpectedly radical neighborhood introduced a major glitch in California’s plan to pave highways everywhere. That twist created our current version of democracy.

Highlights: Market Street punched through rock, flume from San Mateo County, 1928 highway design, insanely huge floods, Yelamu village of Chutchui, old photos, linear dunes, first gay couple, black financial power, sharrows, freeway revolt, Bike Coalition history, Duboce mural, Captain Anza’s journal, photography innovations.

Thinkwalking is all about how the natural landscape determined the city’s shape. No place better to see that than the Wiggle.

☆ RSVP required
↪ Rain or shine
↪ Not vigorous exercise! You may get chilled if you forget your extra layers.
↪ End within a few blocks of where we started
↪ Maximum 15 people

Payment Scale

At the end of your Thinkwalk if you can’t afford the standard $40 please feel free to pay a lower amount.

Dec
26
Fri
2014
Walk Deep in Manure & Park History
Dec 26 @ 9:30 AM – 12:30 PM

Thinkwalks presents an exploration walk:

Walk Deep in Manure & Park History

 

The Park was nothing but blowing sand until the manure arrived.

Where the pregnancy test frogs lived. And still may.

Today’s Golden Gate Park is a lush, sculpted garden. What a feat! For 6,000 years it was open dunes. There is one small woodland that’s been there for centuries, if you stretch the definition of “be.” We’ll explore how the park came to be. We’ll visit locations that are glamorous habitat for a pregnancy test frog. We’ll identify bits of a building that’s (strangely) eight centuries old. We’ll explore!

Highlights: dawn redwoods, native oak forest, horseshoe pits, quarries, velociraptor forest, Hearst’s ambitions, old zoo, first playground, earth moving stories, invisible multicolor bridge, fog & wind, the old Downtown of the Park, pedestrian passages, new nature trail, old photos, world’s fair of 1894.

Unearth how your Park was made, and make it even more yours.

☆ RSVP required
↪ Rain or shine
↪ Not vigorous exercise! You may get chilled if you forget your extra layers.
↪ End within a few blocks of where we started
↪ Maximum 15 people

Payment Scale

At the end of your Thinkwalk if you can’t afford the standard $25 please feel free to pay a lower amount.

Dec
28
Sun
2014
Hike Our Most Hidden Watershed
Dec 28 @ 10:30 AM – 2:00 PM

Thinkwalks presents an exploration hike:

Hike Our Most Hidden Watershed

 

San Francisco’s first major reservoir started as a natural lake and again has become just a lake.

Concrete walls

An empty Laguna Honda Reservoir after the 1906 quake.

This watershed on the west side of Twin Peaks near 7th Avenue has been through a lot. Sewers flow under the deteriorating concrete bottom of the abandoned reservoir at Laguna Honda. Muni Metro trains run under the creek. We’ll examine the secret back woods of the watershed where no official trails go. Recently, renegade trails have been appearing.

Highlights: springs, hidden tributaries, dunes, private neighborhood, WWII Victory Gardens, rail tunnel vent, SF’s first imported water aqueduct, water for Golden Gate Park, early development, artful hospital detritus.

Be prepared to visit sandy or muddy remote places, some not on any known map.

☆ RSVP required
↪ Rain or shine
↪ Bring lunch food (sharing tradition optional)
↪ Hike length: approx. 5 miles
↪ Includes a few hills
↪ Ends at start location (loop)
↪ Maximum 20 people

Payment Scale

At the end of your Thinkwalk if you can’t afford the standard $25 please feel free to pay a lower amount.

Dec
29
Mon
2014
Transportation History Ride
Dec 29 @ 9:30 AM – 12:30 PM

Thinkwalks presents an exploration ride:

Transportation History Ride

 

Golden Gate park is a canvass on which the city’s ambitions were sketched.

San Francisco was the first major city on the coast. We’ll discover many firsts in the Park because it was where ideas were tested. The city’s history exactly matches the 160 years of transportation revolutions. We’ll see where a major railroad came right into the park, where the suspension bridge was first tried, where driver licenses were invented, why pedestrians were so feared, and we’ll even learn about street sweeping. This ride will include great discussions between short stretches of riding.

Highlights: Brooklyn Bridge in SF, the Northwest Passage, building roads on sand dunes, echo tunnels, fog & wind, abandoned 12th-20th century castle, racetrack, garage fight, elephant ambulance, old photos, mini eiffel tower.

Come ride around a park which was created out of a transportation challenge: too much horse poop!

☆ RSVP required
↪ Rain or shine
↪ Bring your bike!
↪ Not vigorous exercise! You may get chilled if you forget your extra layers.
↪ End within a few blocks of where we started
↪ Maximum 15 people

Payment Scale

At the end of your Thinkwalk if you can’t afford the standard $25 please feel free to pay a lower amount.

Dec
30
Tue
2014
Divisadero Natural History Walk
Dec 30 @ 1:30 PM – 3:00 PM

Thinkwalks presents an exploration walk:

Divisadero Natural History Walk

 

A long dune field blew across the city. The ice age was over.

Amy in front of it

The valley along Devisadero (not a misspelling) was called ‘San Souci’ (that one’s a purposeful misspelling).

Alamo Square Park is an outcrop of rock (one of many) jutting up through the vast dune field. Like all of our outcrops, water springs up through the fissures, even at hilltops. We’ll explore places that were once lakes along Divisadero, springs along Fulton and ridges along Hayes. Those things happened since the Gold Rush, but we’ll look back farther, too.

Highlights: rehabbing park irrigation, San Souci Road House, shanks’ mare to the Presidio, the Central Valley pwns us, William Fell, Hebrew orphans, Hayes Creek, Hayes dune, old maps, fog & wind, viewpoint misspellings.

This, the shortest Thinkwalk we offer, will have a long-lasting effect on the way you view the city. You’ll start seeing things! (like the underlying landscapes!)

☆ RSVP required
↪ Rain or shine
↪ Not vigorous exercise! You may get chilled if you forget your extra layers.
↪ End within a few blocks of where we started
↪ Maximum 15 people

Payment Scale

At the end of your Thinkwalk if you can’t afford the standard $25 please feel free to pay a lower amount.

Jan
6
Tue
2015
Hot Air & Cool Water Walk
Jan 6 @ 1:30 PM – 4:30 PM

Thinkwalks presents an exploration walk:

Hot Air & Cool Water Walk

 

Copious water and hot air gush from openings around here. It’s Civic Center!

birds-eye view with passenger train in foreground

Hayes Valley in an early sketch

The original town of Yerba Buena at a small cove was far from here. When it became San Francisco it expanded like crazy. Where the library is now, there was a graveyard beside a marsh. Then it became City Hall. Then the UN Charter was signed here. Then everything!

Highlights: stories of the dome, relearning the underground river, freeway removal, Truth mural, Mona’s mural, Beaux Arts instead of Art Deco, 1906 explosions, book digitizing and dumping, plank road, missing dunes, the Jewish Korean center, Hayes Valley.

By looking around, you’d have no idea all this happened—and is still happening here.

☆ RSVP required
↪ Rain or shine
↪ Not vigorous exercise! You may get chilled if you forget your extra layers.
↪ End within a few blocks of where we started
↪ Maximum 15 people

Payment Scale

At the end of your Thinkwalk if you can’t afford the standard $40 please feel free to pay a lower amount.

Jan
7
Wed
2015
Glen Park Loop
Jan 7 @ 10:30 AM – 1:30 PM

Thinkwalks presents an exploration hike:

Glen Park Loop

Some SF waterways never got buried.

Joel shows how to use a tire swing in Glen Canyon!

The creek at Glen Canyon is just one of the many excellent excuses to explore this remarkable neighborhood. We’ll go up and over the hill past rope swings with astounding views on hills named for historic goat ranching. We’ll walk a street called Penny Lane, find the hidden segment of Castro, and get into muddy side-tracks exploring a hidden wetland.

Highlights: daylighting creeks, Little Switzerland, new stairways, micro-vineyard, “Thirty Harry” (not a movie), brick circles, sidewalks springing natural leaks, Pony Express, Joseph Eichler homes, chicken farm, church garden, cops-in-training.

If you’ve dismissed this area because it has no Victorian beauty, you’re missing out on one sweet corner of the city!

☆ RSVP required
↪ Rain or shine
↪ Bring lunch food (sharing tradition optional)
↪ Hike length: approx. 5.5 miles
↪ Steep hills, no mountains
↪ Ends at start location (loop)
↪ Maximum 20 people

Payment Scale

At the end of your Thinkwalk if you can’t afford the standard $25 please feel free to pay a lower amount.

Jan
9
Fri
2015
Mission: Water Walking
Jan 9 @ 9:30 AM – 12:00 PM

Thinkwalks presents an exploration walk:

Mission: Water Walking

 

Why is the Mission of San Francisco called ‘Dolores’? Yet, the city was called ‘San Francisco’!

Bronze plaque

We’ll debunk this bronzed (but incoherent) claim!

We’ll explore along water routes where creeks once flowed, before the city grew up. Some are still flowing, hidden. We’ll delve into both practical and political sides of local drinking water, sewers, wells, hydrants and reservoirs. In the process, you’ll find out how this place came to be a population center. Coolest of all, we’ll debunk SF’s founding lore (“Founded on a now-vanished freshwater lake”) and see how that myth came into being.

Highlights: sinking hotels, lagunas and arroyos, gas in the ground, old well data, The Willows resort, old photos, water tables, watersheds, Yelamu villages, forcible conversion, Chula alley, Captain Juan Bautista de Anza, Merrill’s mistakes, brutally wrong bronze plaque, Noachian Deluge.

Exploring the Mission District might just leave you awash in water history. Beware the floods!

☆ RSVP required
↪ Rain or shine
↪ Not vigorous exercise! You may get chilled if you forget your extra layers.
↪ End within a few blocks of where we started
↪ Maximum 15 people

Payment Scale

At the end of your Thinkwalk if you can’t afford the standard $40 please feel free to pay a lower amount.

Jan
15
Thu
2015
Randall Talk: Ice Plants, Mattress Wireweed & Other Onslaughts
Jan 15 @ 7:30 PM – 9:00 PM

Thinkwalks and SF Natural History Series present:

A talk at the Randall Museum

Ice Plants, Mattress Wireweed & Other Onslaughts

Have you seen how much of the coastal parkland is now covered in succulent ground cover, hardy New Zealand vines and just too many highly invasive species? Come hear Lew Stringer give us the low down on ground cover invasive plants. He’s been working with the Presidio Trust, and before that the Golden Gate National Recreation Area, to develop strategies to manage the various species that would take everything over if they managed themselves.

Path with plants

The so-called ice plant growing in the Presidio and around SF is ‘sour fig’ from South Africa, brought here as padding for shipped produce.

Lew will give us a presentation and the usual discussion will ensue about the creepy plants that seem to be creeping all over the place. Invasives aren’t 100% evil. They’re 100% complex and give a real challenge to restoration efforts in the parks.

⭐ No need to RSVP—Just show up!

Jan
21
Wed
2015
Talk at Shaping SF: Washed Off in A Torrent—Newfound Extreme Weather History
Jan 21 @ 7:30 PM – 9:30 PM

Thinkwalks and Shaping SF present:

A talk at 518 Valencia

Washed Off in A Torrent—Newfound Extreme Weather History

If you’re on my mailing list, you know I’ve been saturating my brain with discoveries about the Noachian Deluge of 1862. Yeah, that’s the Noah.

This steamship sank during its rescue mission to help people who were flooded out.

This steamship sank during its rescue mission to help people who were flooded out.

I’ve learned that the girl who’s “lost and gone forever” in Oh My Darling Clementine actually died in the floods of 1862. I’ve discovered that the extreme weather disaster, that so few people seem to even realize occurred, killed people in many states. Fatalities numbered in the thousands, including a famous singer who froze to death in SF, indoors. (Yes, SF was hit pretty hard and a number of houses collapsed, undermined by water flows!)

Here’s a chance to get caught up in person on what I’ve found, from cattle industry stats to telecommunications. I’ll focus first on the stories, systemic, personal and climatological.

Then I’ll bring it around to how this storm can be an example for what a really extreme weather event could be like in our future.Of course, we’ll also get into why this history is so lost and gone*, dreadfull

sorry to say. (*but not forever)

I’m looking forward to this talk because the discussions after are always so great. I’ll be presenting this talk in the middle of my Kickstarter Campaign, to help raise funds for the first wide and deep social and historical research project on these storms.

See you there!

Feb
17
Tue
2015
Mission: Water Walking
Feb 17 @ 1:30 PM – 4:00 PM

Thinkwalks presents an exploration walk:

Mission: Water Walking

 

Why is the Mission of San Francisco called ‘Dolores’? Yet, the city was called ‘San Francisco’!

Bronze plaque

We’ll debunk this bronzed (but incoherent) claim!

We’ll explore along water routes where creeks once flowed, before the city grew up. Some are still flowing, hidden. We’ll delve into both practical and political sides of local drinking water, sewers, wells, hydrants and reservoirs. In the process, you’ll find out how this place came to be a population center. Coolest of all, we’ll debunk SF’s founding lore (“Founded on a now-vanished freshwater lake”) and see how that myth came into being.

Highlights: sinking hotels, lagunas and arroyos, gas in the ground, old well data, The Willows resort, old photos, water tables, watersheds, Yelamu villages, forcible conversion, Chula alley, Captain Juan Bautista de Anza, Merrill’s mistakes, brutally wrong bronze plaque, Noachian Deluge.

Exploring the Mission District might just leave you awash in water history. Beware the floods!

☆ RSVP required
↪ Rain or shine
↪ Not vigorous exercise! You may get chilled if you forget your extra layers.
↪ End within a few blocks of where we started
↪ Maximum 15 people

Payment Scale

At the end of your Thinkwalk if you can’t afford the standard $40 please feel free to pay a lower amount.

Feb
18
Wed
2015
Divisadero Natural History Walk
Feb 18 @ 9:30 AM – 11:00 AM

Thinkwalks presents an exploration walk:

Divisadero Natural History Walk

 

A long dune field blew across the city. The ice age was over.

Amy in front of it

The valley along Devisadero (not a misspelling) was called ‘San Souci’ (that one’s a purposeful misspelling).

Alamo Square Park is an outcrop of rock (one of many) jutting up through the vast dune field. Like all of our outcrops, water springs up through the fissures, even at hilltops. We’ll explore places that were once lakes along Divisadero, springs along Fulton and ridges along Hayes. Those things happened since the Gold Rush, but we’ll look back farther, too.

Highlights: rehabbing park irrigation, San Souci Road House, shanks’ mare to the Presidio, the Central Valley pwns us, William Fell, Hebrew orphans, Hayes Creek, Hayes dune, old maps, fog & wind, viewpoint misspellings.

This, the shortest Thinkwalk we offer, will have a long-lasting effect on the way you view the city. You’ll start seeing things! (like the underlying landscapes!)

☆ RSVP required
↪ Rain or shine
↪ Not vigorous exercise! You may get chilled if you forget your extra layers.
↪ End within a few blocks of where we started
↪ Maximum 15 people

Payment Scale

At the end of your Thinkwalk if you can’t afford the standard $25 please feel free to pay a lower amount.

Feb
19
Thu
2015
Randall Talk: SF Carbon Cycles, Humans & the Climate
Feb 19 @ 7:30 PM – 9:00 PM

Thinkwalks and SF Natural History Series present:

A talk at the Randall Museum

SF Carbon Cycles, Humans & the Climate

John’s making great strides in organizing plans with everyone from the mayors’ conference to the White House. Come hear what you can do, what the city is planning, and how the Randall Museum will be part of a demonstration project on carbon dioxide. We’ll discuss the whole carbon cycle with an eye to making major changes in all human-carbon usage systems: human nutrition, organic waste streams, soil health options, wealth & economics, and carbon credits protocols. Let’s talk about the human relationship to carbon and what it means to stopping and reversing global warming.

⭐ No need to RSVP—Just show up!

Feb
22
Sun
2015
Social Justice Mural Walk
Feb 22 @ 1:30 PM – 4:00 PM

Thinkwalks presents an exploration walk:

Social Justice Mural Walk

 

Street art is graffiti. Street art is mural art. Street art is a staple. Literally.

Bronze plaque

Visiting Collette Crutcher’s sculpted mural on 16th Street

Have you ever noticed the inadvertent collection of poster staples on a wooden pole from a hundred years of community outreach? We’ll explore the Mission. We’ll find random aesthetic drama, along with specific murals and other stunning street art. Joel was a mural organizer before he started Thinkwalks. In the interim, he studied how Mexico’s revolution in 1910 bled art all over San Francisco.

Highlights: earliest known mural, Benny Bufano sculptures, Chinese democracy, art revolutions, Maestrapiece, Susan Greene, CAMP, ‘The Apartment’ by Andrew Schultz & Aaron Noble, Politec paints, anti-interventionisma, Timothy Pflueger, Mona Caron, public painting techniques, Collette Crutcher, Ralph Stackpole, Lucia & Arthur Mathews, Rigo 23, Diego Rivera, socialist realism.

Thousands of murals tucked away in secret places await your inquiring mind.

☆ RSVP required
↪ Rain or shine
↪ Not vigorous exercise! You may get chilled if you forget your extra layers.
↪ Ends at start location (loop)
↪ Maximum 15 people

Payment Scale

At the end of your Thinkwalk if you can’t afford the standard $25 please feel free to pay a lower amount.

Feb
25
Wed
2015
Hot Air & Cool Water Walk
Feb 25 @ 1:30 PM – 4:30 PM

Thinkwalks presents an exploration walk:

Hot Air & Cool Water Walk

 

Copious water and hot air gush from openings around here. It’s Civic Center!

birds-eye view with passenger train in foreground

Hayes Valley in an early sketch

The original town of Yerba Buena at a small cove was far from here. When it became San Francisco it expanded like crazy. Where the library is now, there was a graveyard beside a marsh. Then it became City Hall. Then the UN Charter was signed here. Then everything!

Highlights: stories of the dome, relearning the underground river, freeway removal, Truth mural, Mona’s mural, Beaux Arts instead of Art Deco, 1906 explosions, book digitizing and dumping, plank road, missing dunes, the Jewish Korean center, Hayes Valley.

By looking around, you’d have no idea all this happened—and is still happening here.

☆ RSVP required
↪ Rain or shine
↪ Not vigorous exercise! You may get chilled if you forget your extra layers.
↪ End within a few blocks of where we started
↪ Maximum 15 people

Payment Scale

At the end of your Thinkwalk if you can’t afford the standard $40 please feel free to pay a lower amount.

Feb
27
Fri
2015
Wiggle Walk
Feb 27 @ 9:30 AM – 12:00 PM

Thinkwalks presents an exploration walk:

Wiggle Walk

 

You thought you knew the Wiggle. There’s more to know!

group with Reservoir Street sign

Evidence of 1862 reservoir that’s no longer here beside Market Street. Who even notices the sign?

Yes, true, it was named the Wiggle due to the zigzag of bike route #30 through the neighborhood and avoiding hills. But how about the dunes? What of Martin Luther King? We’ll explore the ‘hood from this, that and askew angles: geology, activism history, water, native tribes, etc. There once was a spring here. Without it, the city would never have existed. There was also a green rocky mountain here. The top was chopped off—twice. In the 1960s, this unexpectedly radical neighborhood introduced a major glitch in California’s plan to pave highways everywhere. That twist created our current version of democracy.

Highlights: Market Street punched through rock, flume from San Mateo County, 1928 highway design, insanely huge floods, Yelamu village of Chutchui, old photos, linear dunes, first gay couple, black financial power, sharrows, freeway revolt, Bike Coalition history, Duboce mural, Captain Anza’s journal, photography innovations.

Thinkwalking is all about how the natural landscape determined the city’s shape. No place better to see that than the Wiggle.

☆ RSVP required
↪ Rain or shine
↪ Not vigorous exercise! You may get chilled if you forget your extra layers.
↪ End within a few blocks of where we started
↪ Maximum 15 people

Payment Scale

At the end of your Thinkwalk if you can’t afford the standard $40 please feel free to pay a lower amount.

Mar
19
Thu
2015
Randall Talk: The Most Extreme Storms Yet
Mar 19 @ 7:30 PM – 9:00 PM

Thinkwalks and SF Natural History Series present:

A talk at the Randall Museum

The Most Extreme Storms Yet

Joel Pomerantz of Thinkwalks on the big stage! (It’s actually the last Natural History Talk that will take place in the intimate space of the Randall Museum Theater before a year of renovation begins.)

Randall TheaterJoel will share his research on the weather disaster that determined so much of what’s around you today. In early 1862 the sky dumped upwards of ten feet of rain in the mountains (about four feet in San Francisco). In the middle of that, there was a hard freeze for a week down to sea level. Thousands died. Dead cattle and cord-wood piled up on Bay Area beaches, washed out from the river system.

No previous research has done so much to connect the dots.

Come learn about the widespread disaster that spanned more than four states (before all were states), changed the course of rivers and history, destroyed the California economy and brought in invasive grasses, new songs, changes in the way government works, extensive levee projects, and much else. At a time when major increases are expected in overall storm intensity throughout the world, it would be clever of us humans to learn from past extreme weather events.

Knowing how extreme it can be might be the wake-up we need.

⭐ No need to RSVP—Just show up!

Contact