Golden Gate | San Francisco, CA
You have to love work trips (at least, I usually don’t mind them as long as they don’t happen TOO often) – most expenses paid for and usually nothing expected of you past 5 PM. Unexpectedly, I had the opportunity to be in the Bay Area this past week and couldn’t find any reason not to head up to the Golden Gate Bridge. I packed my camera, borrowed a co-worker’s rental car, and after a few quick stops to visit some friends in Oakland, I got to Fort Baker right around 11 PM. I couldn’t have asked for a more perfect, crisp night – no clouds, no fog, stars overhead, the twinkling of downtown San Francisco and the Bay Bridge off to the left, and the Golden Gate Bridge towering overhead on the right.
Fort Baker is located on the Sausalito (NE) side of the bridge – the only side of the bridge Katie and I didn’t visit last time we were in San Francisco (August 2013). If you drive through the Fort grounds, there’s a long lookout/docking/fishing pier off of Moore Road/Conzleman Road that I would highly recommend for a serene vantage point of the bridge at night. The pier is pretty isolated, as you can only get to it from one direction. I spent about an hour and a half on or around the pier, taking pictures, walking along the shore, and absorbing the scenery. For a little while, I decided to just sit on the pier with my legs hanging over – a dolphin swam by a few times blowing air upwards, a few boats went past in the distance, a coyote actually walked out onto the pier but got scared away by the flashlight of a couple (pictured below) who was on the pier too doing some midnight fishing. An awesome fusion of nature and architecture, as if the surrounding area was unphased and unaffected by this massive feat of engineering and humanity. The sound of cars driving past on the bridge and the waves lapping against the rocks below my feet. An evening I won’t forget for the rest of my life.
P.S. For you technical folks, most of these were taken at 15, 20, or 30 second exposures at ISO 200 and an aperture set somewhere between f/4 and f/9.