Walk the Wiggle Tour description

by Joel Pomerantz

June 1st, 2010

This is the quintessential Thinkwalk, mixing all themes from the other tours: creeks, urban planning, social history, murals and everything else! Curious neighbors, visitors and local cyclists alike will love this two hour tour.

The Wiggle itself is now so popular it’s rapidly becoming SF’s human-powered answer to the iconic U.S. highway Route 66. The popular Wiggle bike route, zig-zagging to avoid the hills, is also a walking route—and has been for almost 5,000 years.

When you follow the Wiggle bike route, through the Lower Haight, did you know that you’re moseying along:

  • A dune field burying a rocky watercourse?
  • An old Spanish trail? (Mission to Presidio)
  • An ancient trail walked by Ohlone villagers?
  • A remote and wild land called San Souci Valley?

This is the practical way to get from Market Street to the Panhandle and western neighborhoods, but it’s many other things, too! Come walk the Wiggle! Thrill nerdily to the natural and human history of The Wiggle!

Come see exactly where the dunes and hills were, one hundred fifty years ago, when the city boundary was extended to include this land. Locate where the spring emerged that caused Anza to pick this area for the Mission. Discover the history of Reservoir Street, which you never noticed before. Learn why the sewers are inviting big trouble. See maps and photos of a forgotten ravine.

While you’re at it, ask your bike politics questions of guide and researcher Joel Pomerantz, who co-founded the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition, organized the Duboce Bikeway Mural, and has published and spoken widely on the topic of waterways in the city.

Joel, in a 1994 article, was the first to popularize the ridiculous moniker ‘the Wiggle’—so he can ridicule it all he wants! It took more than a decade for the term term to enter popular parlance. Now it’s posted on official street signs and covered in the NY Times and Wikipedia.

Donations are sliding scale (you decide what to pay).
$10 to $40 per person depending on your ability to pay.
Meet at the Bike Mural, Duboce Avenue at Church Street.

Please check tour dates, then invite your friends
(RSVP by phone or using the comment space at the bottom of this page. 415-505-8255).

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