Posts Tagged ‘course’

Old White Guy, Old White Guy, Less Old White Guy: A Random Sample of SF’s Supposedly “Diverse” Golf Course in San Mateo County

Monday, July 6th, 2015

So that’s 100% white guys. (Of “course,” our n=3 here, but even so. I mean, the people who take advantage of this golfing subsidy skew white, male, older, wealthier, right? I mean, am I wrong here? Disabuse me, Gentle Reader, if necessary.)

These are the only people I’ve ever seen at the white elephant known as Sharp Park, which, oddly, is operated by San Francisco even though it’s not even located in San Francisco.

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So, why would Interim Mayor Ed Lee go against the Board of Supervisors, who wanted to sell off / give away / otherwise rid ourselves of this light-skinned loxodontine from Way Down In Pacifica? Well, middle-class welfare tends to be hard to eliminate.

And then there’s this constituency:

“City management of the golf course is handicapped by a sclerotic labor contract that has some employees earning six-figure salaries* for work that pays less than half of that on most golf courses.”

Oh well. I suppose our southernmost “run-down” golf course will continue to make us a national laughingstock.

And who’s going to pay for the $20-$30 million* worth of deferred work what this ball-and-chain needs?

I don’t know.

Oh well.

*Practically everything in Frisco is “sustainable” these these days. But what about Sharp Park? And then there’s this, from our drought-addled Year of the Lord 2015:

Dan Noyes:How do you respond to this not being fixed for four years?”
Gavin Newsom’s Jogging Buddy / Political Booster / Lawyer: “Well, that’s probably not exactly accurate. There are a series of leaks in the system and we manage them as best we can.” 

50,000 gallons? That’s a Cosco Busan bunker oil spill-worth of water daily. Oh well.

Our Changing Presidio: A Military Observation Tower Located Just North of the Richmond Replaced by a Communications Tower

Wednesday, June 24th, 2015

First, it was all like this:


Get all the deets here.

You see I’m six-foot-one and a ton of fun, so things were a bit wobbly on the staircase going up, back in the day. Empty beer cans are what you’d find up there.

But now the Presidio isn’t a military base – there’s no need to have an observation tower for training recruits anymore.

Radio communications, that’s the present need on this ridge, and it’s The Future as well.

Here’s how things look these days:

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This scene makes me think of the Old Days.


A Man In His Forties

Man, Teaching Adults How to Ride Bikes in Golden Gate Park Involves a Lot of Pushing of Bikes – A Lot!

Thursday, April 16th, 2015

I’ll tell you, I’ve taught people how to ride bikes over the years, and I’ll tell you the amount of hours spent teaching all those people how to push bikes, well, that has been exactly zero.

And yet in these courses, as seen in the Panhandle, that seems to be all they do, just pushing bikes around in formation:

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And we can’t have a helmet law in CA because that teaches people that cycling can be dangerous, and yet helmets and safety vests appear to be Job One here.

Just saying….

I’ll tell you man, the people who want to ride bikes in Frisco are already riding bikes in Frisco. They don’t need to be coaxed or cajoled – they’re already doing it, you know, naturally. And if you, and you know who you are, if you think that this is the way to get a five-fold increase in cycling in San Francisco in the remaining five years ’til 2020, well, you’re sadly mistaken.

Is bike riding a religion or just another way to get around town?

You tell me, Babe.

You tell me.

A Small Victory: Organizers Finally Recognize Hayes Street Hill is NOT the Highest Point of the Bay to Breakers

Thursday, February 27th, 2014

First things first, let’s prove that the top of the Hayes Street Hill on Hayes Street is not the highest point of the current B to B route.

Here’s a route profile, starting from the SoMA near the bay going all the way to the breakers of Ocean Beach. See that big incline just before mile marker three? That’s the vaunted Hayes Street Hill. 


And here’s another shot at it:

And here’s a contour map of the Hayes Street area:

But here’s your winner. It’s the 270-something-foot-high saddle on JFK Drive betwixt Prayer Book Cross and Stow Lake / Strawberry Hill, just underneath where “KENNEDY” is written:

So that’s it.

From the organizers:

“Under Armour will have a strong race day presence as the official sponsor of the notoriously challenging “Hayes Hill,” awarding prizes to the fastest hill runners from select racing categories.”

(People from around here call it Hayes Street Hill, but otherwise this is fine. The name of the hill itself is Alamo Heights.)

This was what the organizers used to say every year:

“Around the 2.5-mile mark runners climb an 11.15% grade between Fillmore and Steiner, bringing them to the highest point in the race, approximately 215 feet above sea level. The remainder of the course gradually flows downhill alongside the Panhandle and through Golden Gate Park.”

So yeah, the course gradually flows downhill, but only after peaking in Golden Gate Park.

All right, let’s see how the MSM handles this in 2014…

OMG, OMG, Meet Hundreds of Adorable Goats Today at the Presidio! Nature’s Lawnmowers Come to the Golf Course

Tuesday, August 7th, 2012

Get on up to the Presidio today at 1:00 PM to see hundreds of goats being delivered to clean up the areas surround our Presidio Golf Course. Deets below.

And then, to make your day completely hurcine, go ahead and nosh on a warm Goat Cheese Naploleon at the popular Presidio Cafe:

GOAT CHEESE NAPOLEON – warm Laura Chenel goat cheese, puff pastry, sweet & spicy pecans, fresh berries & balsamic dressing

It’s the circle of life, or something, nom nom.

Oh, here they are:

Three Boer Goats via Jennifer Schwalm

(When young, these critters kind of look like dogs.)

All the deets:


Date: Tuesday August 7, 2012

Time: 1:00pm

Location: Presidio Golf Course; behind the clubhouse (300 Finley Road, inside the Arguello Gate)

Who: The Presidio Trust and Arnold Palmer Golf welcome a herd of goats to the Presidio Golf Course to tame the overgrown ivy, blackberry and hemlock that have popped up around the links. The goats will arrive at 1:00pm on Tuesday, August 7 and will be corralled at the clubhouse for about an hour when the public can “meet the goats.” After all the goats are unloaded, they will be shepherded by three border collies to a site near the driving range.

What: The 250-300 Boer goats begin their culinary odyssey in an overgrown thicket behind the driving range. The hungry herd’s two-week tour of duty will be spent chomping through weeds and transforming them into natural fertilizer, allowing native grasses to flourish. Once the unwanted vegetation has been eaten back, not only can errant golf balls be retrieved, but serpentine soil will be revealed. The hope is long buried seeds will sprout, enabling native wildflowers and grasses to once again take root and thrive. The goats’ next stop will be a wetland area near the 4TH hole now thick with thistle and hemlock.

The project is part of a broader effort to upgrade the course using sustainable means whenever possible. Improvements are planned for every hole and bunker on the course, including the creation of so-called “fuzzy bunkers” using native plants and grasses. The result will be a course that is both more attractive and more challenging, with a less manicured and wilder look evocative of traditional Scottish links courses.

Originally constructed in 1895, the Presidio Golf Course is the second oldest course west of the Mississippi. Long restricted to members of the military and the exclusive Presidio Golf Club, the course was opened to public play 1995.

The goats are supplied by California Grazing, a holistic land management company that provides brush and weed control through grazing.”

See you there!

The Search for Joseph McHenry, a Former Marine from San Bruno – Today in Pacifica at Mori Point Near Sharp Park Golf Course

Saturday, March 24th, 2012

Today’s search starts at 8:00 AM:

What: Senator Leland Yee (D-San Francisco/San Mateo), along with his staff, will join a group of Marines that served with Joseph McHenry, a former Marine from San Bruno who has been missing since March 5, in a search on Saturday in Pacifica. On Wednesday, McHenry’s vehicle was found parked in a residential area near Sharp Park Golf Course near Mori Point. A backpack believed to be McHenry’s was found on a secluded beach near the golf course. Anyone with information should call San Bruno Police at 650-616-7100. Anyone who wants to participate in the search should arrive by 8:00 AM.

When: 8:00 A.M., Saturday, March 24, 2012

Where: Mori Point, Pacifica, California

Former Marine Joseph McHenry went missing in Pacifica, CA. The search near Mori Point ended last week. When a group of Marine’s that had been stationed with him in Iraq (with the Amphibious Assault Battalion Bravo Company) found out they organized a grass roots effort of Marine’s on leave to get a search party. Marine’s as far away as NH, OK, TX, Camp Pendleton, CA and other states are paying their way and flying/driving in tomorrow (Friday 23 March) and will search the area from 1300 Friday through Monday Night. It started with a handful of Marine’s and now many of their brother’s in Arms that were not even stationed with Joe are so moved at the show of and dedication to brotherhood that they are joining the search. As of this morning there were over 20 Marines and the numbers are quickly rising. They take seriously the “Leave no Marine Behind”. 

I live near Pacifica and am Active duty Coast Guard. My brother Richard Godfrey was stationed with Joe in Iraq they were both communication specialist. Joe was his mentor. My brother says “Retrieving wounded comrades from the field of fire is a Marine Corps tradition more sacred than life”. The Marine’s goal is to search the last known area to find McHenry regardless of his condition and if he is found in less than favorable circumstances at least he will get a proper funeral and there will be some closure for the people blessed to have him in their lives. When others learned of the efforts of this small group of Marine’s many people have volunteered to help however they could. 

The original search team: Sgt Christopher Lawrence, a communication technician and Purple Heart recipient that lost his leg while deployed with McHenry. Sgt Kyle Parrish an Amphibious Assualtman and certified Combat Hunter. McHenry was his Radioman for the entire Iraq deployment in 2007. And (my Brother) Sgt Richard Godfrey a Communications Technician during the same deployment was mentored by McHenry. 

A PayPal account has been established for anyone that would like to donate to the search efforts. any unused funds will go to a USMC related charity. All of these junior enlisted Marine’s have taken time off from work and paid their way here. They will be sleeping on floors and couches through Tuesday. I will have a house full of Marine’s tomorrow. The weather will be bad this weekend, but they plan on searching into the night and in the rain. If he can be found, i’m sure they will find him. 

Joe had reported that he would be camping and rock climbing in the Pacifica Area. His car was found locked nearby and a backpack believed to be his was found on the beach. He was last seen March 2 at the 100 block of Quail Point Circle 

San Bruno Police is leading the investigation and can be reached at (650) 616-7100. 

How Many people know someone, much less 20 someone’s that would fly across the country to look for them if they were missing? At least i know i have a Marine for a brother!”

The Top of the Hayes Street Hill and the Part of the Bay to Breakers Course in GGP That’s Even Higher

Thursday, October 6th, 2011

Just noticed these numbers on the Hayes Street right next to Alamo Square. (Boy, that’s some long-lasting paint they’re using.)

You’ll notice that the land to the west in the background goes back uphill again, so that’s why the top of the Hayes Street Hill isn’t the highest part of the course, even though that’s what all your authority figures in the corporate and media worlds have been telling you for decades

Click to expand

And for some reason, people say that Hayes Street tops out at only 215 feet, but that’s way low – it’s not even close, really. But somebody made a mistake years ago and it gets repeated over and over.

Oh well.

How Many Golf Courses Does the San Francisco Area Really Need?

Thursday, December 23rd, 2010

The suburbs of San Francisco, you know, the Parkside and Northwest San Mateo County, that whole area, seem to be about half golf course from this angle.

Shouldn’t we be going for density instead?

Why can’t we build apartment buildings to the moon and then throw a MUNI station into the mix?

Why can’t we do this now?

Who needs old-school Parkmerced? Who needs golf courses?

The Shutdown, Brokedown Military Observation Tower of the Presidio Has Finally Been Removed, Replaced

Wednesday, December 1st, 2010

I just found out that the Great Military Observation Tower of the Presidio is no more. It poked above the eucalyptus, so they had to they had to paint it #17875 White and #12197 Aviation Orange, just like Sutro Tower. But now this sweet tower is gone.

You could see the whole bay area from up there – probably with a similar view that you’d get atop a Golden Gate Bridge tower. And it was accessible – you could just hop the fence (while minding the concertina wire) and then use the internal staircase to get to the platform up top. It was sweet:

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But then then took out the first flight of stairs, so you couldn’t just walk up the thing and then they put up a cell tower right next door and then, not too long ago, they took the observation tower down.

So here’s the situation today. Cell tower on the left, and the site of the observation tower (the now-empty square) on the right:

The above shot via Google Maps is from 9-11-2010. (Google has no hassles photographing the Presidio from above, of course.)

Anyway, here’s how things look from Ashbury Heights – the cell tower is there, but the observation tower, Sutro Tower’s Little Buddy, is all gone:

Oh well.

Off-Roading Vandals Tear Up Golden Gate Park Golf Course – $75k in Damage – Revenge Against Golf Pro Bruce Olson?

Tuesday, October 5th, 2010

Check out this bit of news from the SF Rec and Park Blog:

On October 1, we discovered some heart-wrenching vandalism at the Golden Gate Park Golf Course, a nine-hole track that is beloved by golfers of all ages and abilities. The greens and fairways on holes 6, 7 and 8 were heavily damaged by a vehicle, with the seventh green, in particular, destroyed beyond all recognition.  This wasn’t a case of a wayward driver taking an unexpected detour through our golf course.  Someone deliberately made a point of tearing up and destroying our golf course by using it as their own off-road course.”

This is what it looks like:

SF RPD – Click to expand

Of course, vandals is everywhere, and this mayhem could be the result of teenagers out on the town. But check out this happy fun slander* sheet the Yelpers have going and see what some duffers think of resident golf pro Bruce Olson and his policies and behavior and whatnot. (Sensitive, touchy, easily-offended fashion models on the runway are akin to sensitive, touchy, easily-offended golfers on the fairway? Seems that way sometimes.)

And hey, didn’t area billionaire and nascent media baron Warren Hellman just give the GGP something like $75k for irrigation ‘n stuff? Yes he did. Oh well.

Gaia is crying.


*That’s the phrase, but whenever you’re thinking about whether something is slander or libel, just say “defamation” and that’ll cover all your bases.