Share:

Mount Davidson

San Francisco

San Francisco Peninsula + Santa Cruz, California

Start Exploring
Mount Davidson

Share:

Advertisement
  • San Francisco Bay seen from Mount Davidson.- Mount Davidson
  • The trail that climbs the east face of Mount Davidson.- Mount Davidson
  • Downtown San Francisco seen from Mount Davidson.- Mount Davidson
  • Unknown species (help us identify it by providing feedback).- Mount Davidson
  • Three cornered leek (Allium triquetrum).- Mount Davidson
  • Mount Davidson.- Mount Davidson
  • St. Brendan's Bell Tower and the Marin Headlands.- Mount Davidson
  • Fremont's mahonia (Berberis fremontii).- Mount Davidson
  • Mount Davidson.- Mount Davidson
  • Fuschia (Fuchsia magellanica).- Mount Davidson
  • Steller's jay at Mount Davidson.- Mount Davidson
  • Mount Davidson Cross.- Mount Davidson
  • Mount Davidson.- Mount Davidson
  • Unknown polypore (help us identify it by providing feedback).- Mount Davidson
  • Mount Davidson.- Mount Davidson
  • San Bruno Mountain seen from Mount Davidson.- Mount Davidson
  • Mount Davidson Cross.- Mount Davidson
  • Mount Davidson seen from Lake Merced.- Mount Davidson
  • - Mount Davidson
Overview + Weather
Pros: 
Central San Francisco location. Hiking and running trails. City views.
Cons: 
Often foggy. Poison Oak.
Advertisement
Region:
San Francisco Peninsula + Santa Cruz, CA
Congestion: 
Moderate
Pets allowed: 
Yes
Parking Pass: 
Not Required
Preferable Season(s):
Winter, Spring, Summer, Fall
Current Local Weather:
Advertisement
Adventure Description

Adventure Description

Contributor

The highest point in San Francisco, Mount Davidson overlooks the bay and surrounding metropolitan area. From the east face, Berkeley, Oakland, and downtown San Francisco cast silhouettes against the horizon. The western slope stands in stark contrast to its exposed and grassy counterpart, presenting a thickly wooded aspect more reminiscent of a rainforest. 

Eucalyptus trees planted by the 19th-century land baron and former San Francisco mayor Adolph Sutro frame a network of trails that lead to the summit from the residential streets at the park’s edge. Although non-native, the trees provide valuable habitat to hawks and a variety of song birds. The city’s urban coyotes can occasionally be seen at the park.

Originally named Blue Mountain for its lupines, Douglas iris, and other wildflowers, the peak was later named for geographer and Sierra Club board member George Davidson.

Atop Mount Davidson’s 938 feet sits a concrete cross famous for its visibility from afar and its appearance in the film Dirty Harry. The cross lies on private property, sold by the city of San Francisco after years of vandalism and political controversy.  Present ownership allows free access to the cross and holds an annual sunrise service on Easter Sunday.     

Dogs are welcome on the over 5 miles of trails that weave through the lush foliage of Mount Davidson. At just under half a mile, the most direct route to the cross is from the corner of Myra and Dalewood Way. Trailheads are also located on Juanita Way, Rockdale Drive, and La Bica Way.

Updates, Tips + Comments

Updates, Tips + Comments

Field Guide + Map

Field Guide + Map

Download
Advertisement
Location + Directions

Location + Directions

Nearby Camping + Lodging

(8 within a 30 mile radius)

Nearby Adventures

(102 within a 30 mile radius)

Advertisement
Related Content

Related Content

Adventure Community

Adventure Community

Who Wants To Do It
22 Members
Who's Done It
14 Members
Submission by
Contributor
59 Adventures Explored
51 Adventures Published

Newsletter Signup

Join the Outdoor Project Community

Get access to essential planning materials and information for your next adventure. Take a few seconds to join the community. It’s FREE!

Free Field Guides + Maps

Post Updates, Tips + Comments

Organize + Track Your Adventures

Insider Detailed Info, News + Benefits

Custom Driving Directions

Recommended Campsites, Photos + Reservation Info