This image of the San Francisco skyline underneath the Bay Bridge is fairly straightforward from a technical perspective. But getting to this location is not so easy, especially with recent construction and government property restrictions on Yerba Buena Island, a rolling carry-on suitcase in tow, my extreme allergy to poison oak, and of course a steep cliff dropping into the bay. This is one of those “getting there is half the fun” stories.
This was actually my second time trying for this photograph. Several months earlier, I rented a car and drove over the bridge to the island only to realize that accessing this location was more difficult than I had assumed. You can no longer park near the bridge and walking over from Treasure Island is more difficult than Google Maps describes. That evening, I decided to leave the camera in the bag and just enjoy a beautiful sunset with a hot dog in one hand and a beer in the other (both from a pretty decent food cart parked by the entrance to Treasure Island).
Next time I let Uber help out, dropping me off directly above the photo location. The driver probably thought I was crazy, especially since I was hauling my camera backpack and tripod with a very business-like roll-a-board suitcase behind me. Oh and I hadn’t yet changed out of my business suit from a prior meeting down in Silicon Valley. I did at least have time to switch into some hiking shoes before walking through several poison oak strands to the overlook, praying that I wouldn’t get a systemic allergy reaction like a few years ago in Big Sur.
After a few hours of enjoying one of the most beautiful and peaceful spots in the San Francisco Bay Area, Uber conveniently drove me back across the bridge to my hotel in Fisherman’s Wharf. I showed the driver this image so he would understand my strange pickup location.
On subsequent trips to San Francisco, I frequently stare out at Treasure Island, yearning to escape the hustle and bustle of downtown for the tranquility of the island. Sort of like the Red Hot Chili Peppers sang, “take me to the place I love, take me all the way…”