Girls Run Wild

Run These Stairs: 16th Avenue & Moraga Street!

Posted on: June 24, 2011

I’ve blogged a few times about running stairs in San Francisco because, well, there are so many stairs to run!  And even though charging up those steps makes your legs burn, your knees feel weak, and your heart pound harder than you thought it could, once you’re at the top you often discover a view of San Francisco that will take your breath away.  Between the 670 sets of stairs and 4 dozen + hills in our 7 square miles, San Francisco is a paradise for running strengthening.

Grand View Park, also known as Turtle Hill (though I grew up calling it Moraga Hill), stands some 666 feet above sea level at the intersection of San Francisco’s Golden Gate Heights and Sunset District neighborhoods.  From the top one sees the Outerlands: perfectly gridded blocks containing rows and rows of nearly identical homes that end just as the expanse of the Pacific Ocean begins.  On clear days (it’s the Sunset – remember “clear” is a loosely used term in this part of the City) you can see the towers of the Golden Gate Bridge.

At the bottom of Turtle Hill along 16th Avenue between Moraga and Noriega Streets lies a set of 163 stairs that aren’t your average set of City steps.  For two years, artists Colette Crutcher and Aileen Barr, in addition to over 300 neighborhood volunteers, tiled this staircase with an incredible mosaic tribute to the sea and its residences.  How often can you say that you’ve done a stair workout on a public, work of art set of stairs?  Head on over there this weekend and check them out for yourself – not only is the mosaic masterpiece a treat, but the view is worth the climb.

The Moraga Steps

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