Revised Maps Illustrate Final Bernal Hill Trail Restoration Plan

Slides and notes have now been posted from last week’s meeting about the San Francisco Recreation and Park Department’s Bernal Trails Project.

I wrote up my own notes last week, but I was waiting for Rec and Park to release their map of the final trail proposal, which you can now see above. I made a Google Earth overlay of the previous version of the map, so… here’s an update! (KML, requires Google Earth.) As noted in the earlier post, Google Earth’s terrain model is somewhat lacking in detail, but it nevertheless illustrates the proposed changes with more dimensionality than a flat map.

I tried to match these screenshots to a couple of the gorgeous photos from the Bernalwood Air Force’s recent aerial reconnaissance mission. This pair shows the proposed new north-slope trail alignment:

NOW:

Above Bernal Heights

PROPOSED:

This view from the southwest shows a steep trail up to the top, above the Esmeralda stairs. The upper portion will likely be closed for erosion control. According to Rec & Park’s meeting notes, “existing trails denoted by dashed lines will either be decommissioned if they contribute to erosion or loss of habitat or be left in place but be unimproved.”

NOW:

Above Bernal Heights

PROPOSED:

4 thoughts on “Revised Maps Illustrate Final Bernal Hill Trail Restoration Plan

  1. What about dirt biking on the eastern end? I’ve seen kids do that (and by kids I mean guys in their 20s). Will it be disallowed? I can’t imagine it ever being enforced. I mean, right? As if! Well, that seems like an erosion issue.

    Anyway, it all looks good to me so far.

  2. Pingback: Don’t Panic, But Two Trees Were Removed from Bernal Hill Yesterday | Bernalwood

  3. Thanks Todd for cross-posting this. I completely missed it.

    It is my hypothesis that you will not stop social trails from developing on the north slope of the hill above Bernal Heights Boulevard from the Esmeralda Street Steps (on the West) to the entrance an the conjunction of Bernal Heights Boulevard, Esmeralda Ave and Bradford Streets (on the East) with the addition of one, or two improved trails from Bernal Heights Boulevard to the top of the hill.

    There is a large number of foot traffic from Folsom Street who will be going to the top of the hill and it is not intuitive nor convenient for them to enter through either Esmeralda West and Esmeralda East entry points.

    The South side of the hill has 4 access paths to the top of the hill (other than the Esmeralda West and Esmeralda East entry points), the North has zero. Additionally it is my belief that this who access the top of the hill from the South side of the hill are from the adjacent neighborhood or arrive by car. Those that arrive not he North side of the hill are often on foot, and could be coming from neighbor’s North of the adjacent neighborhood like the Mission.

    I would recommend for the North slope of the hill:

    1) An additional trail from the West side sidewalk of Folsom street at Ripley, along the path of the existing social trail, to Bernal Heights Boulevard.

    2) The creation of a trail from Bernal Height Boulevard to the saddle at the top of the hill at a point between the Folsom Bernal Height Boulevard Gate and the new trail (the above reference #1). This would allow highly visible, easy and intuitive access option to the top of the hill.

    3) Improve the social access in the large ravine at the Coso/Shotwell entrance to trail network that enables them to get to the top of the hill.

    These trail additions will solve a fundamental human desire, which is to create the most direct path to where they want to go. See desire paths via Google Images

    I have annotated my recommendations to the attached Bernal Heights Trail Restoration Conceptual Improvement Plan.

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