Battery Charged

Some of the Bay Area's best viewpoints are easy to point out: Just find an old military battery,…

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Some of the Bay Area’s best viewpoints are easy to point out: Just find an old military battery, strategically placed all around the Golden Gate. For sunset viewing without the crowds, you need to choose the right battery! Tourists head to the Marin Headlands northwest of the Golden Gate Bridge along Conzelman Road to Battery Spencer and Battery Wagner, which are the first two batteries you reach. But you know better. Keep going up … and up … all the way up to Hawk Hill; and then keep going! You’ll head down the one-way road just past Hawk Hill (buckle up—this road is like a rollercoaster). When the road finally flattens out, drive about a quarter-mile until you see the old Battery Rathbone and McIndoe on the left.

Pull over, and get ready for a sunset blockbuster. Downtown San Francisco sparkles with the twinkling light atop the Transamerica Pyramid towering like a giant Christmas tree. The south tower of the Golden Gate Bridge catches the setting sun’s fiery rays and glows even more orange. Down below is Black Sand Beach, and it’s not uncommon to hear seals serenading the setting sun. To the west, Point Bonita Lighthouse glows as an iconic beacon, and on clear days you can see as far as the Farallon Islands.

Dog-friendly (be cautious of the cliffs).

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