Hike #20: The Apartment Hike–First Installment

May 15, 2010 § 1 Comment

Location: San Francisco–all over

Distance: 13.7m

Entry fee: a good attitude

The purpose of this hike: make our way across the city hitting up the apartments of as many people as possible taking 30 minutes at each stop to eat, socialize, and imbibe (I don’t know if that qualifies as a “purpose”, but whatever.)  This turned out to be no small feat on a number of levels.  Not only did it require some serious thought in terms of route and timing, but its success also hinged on:

  • the willingness of a large number of people to invite 15+ (potentially intoxicated) sweaty hikers into their homes in the middle of the day and provide them with food and drink
  • another group willing to spend their Saturday wandering the freeway underpasses and trudging up Russian and Potrero Hill(s)

Not to sell my friends short, but I was blown away by the enthusiasm and number of people willing to hang out with toothless dudes in a pub in the Tenderloin in the middle of a sunny Saturday afternoon and make this hike awesome.  Because that’s what it was.

The final route:

Rules:

  • No more than 30 minutes at each stop
  • Anytime a red double decker tourist bus passes by you have to run into the nearest bar and chug a beer
  • Anytime a Bay Quackers Bus passes by you have to run into the nearest bar and shoot the warmest garbage tequila on the dusty bottom shelf
  • At freeway crossing #1, everyone must have a fully inflated bubblegum bubble while crossing the freeway or you have to go back and start over
  • At freeway crossing #2, three legged race, losers have to walk the rest of the way tied together
  • and of course, if we pass a bacon wrapped hot dog cart you have to eat one (this one really stressed Ryan out)

With a start time of 10am and a strict 30-min-per-stop policy, we figured we should hit our final destination around 7pm.

First stop:  Peterson’s, the Tendernob

Coffee, mimosas, PBR, and donuts.  Breakfast of champions.  2 of the 8 hikers that joined us on the first leg showed up around 10:25, so we didn’t actually leave till about 10:40…10 min behind schedule before we even started walking.  Off to a good start.

Second stop: Michelle and Dave’s, Laurel Heights

Like, woah.  What a spread.

At the end of our first 2 mile stretch through Pacific Heights we found ourselves in front of a seriously delightful brunch that included quiche, bagels, muffins, mimosas, and bloody marys.  With garnishes.  We also got to hang out in the backyard area and picked up 3 more hikers.  But 30 minutes isn’t very long, and before you knew it we were stuffed full of quiche and on our way to…

Third Stop: The Dude’s, The Presidio

Upon leaving our second stop were still running about 10 minutes behind schedule.  The Dude got aggressive, took the lead, and announcing, “I think this is the right way” led us off the paved road and onto a narrow dirt trail into the woods…right through an enormous patch of poison oak.  (No symptoms yet, fingers crossed it stays that way.)

But the walk through the shrubbery may have all been worth it, because we arrived at the Dude’s place 5 MIN EARLY!

We got to work right away on the guac, chips, margaritas, and Pacificos that Eden had so nicely arranged, and played a little cornhole/bocci/horseshoes.  We also acquired 6 additional hikers at this stop.  While setting up the cornhole court we heard a shriek from Ryan at the side of the house who had just seen the first…red doubledecker tourbus chugging by.  Dilemma.  We hadn’t anticipated seeing one while INSIDE anyone’s apartment.  Appropriate response?  Finish the cornhole/bocci ball game ASAP and make it to the closest bar.  Which is exactly what we did.

So with cornhole champions crowned and about 15 people in tow we headed towards the Marina and to…

Bar stop #1: The Final Final, the Marina

Quickly downed 15 beers and some popcorn and, with a quick exit, headed up some not so small hills to Lombard, then down the crooked part of Lombard, through the tourists to…

Fourth stop: Tabby, Christian, and Colbie’s, Russian Hill

We arrived here tired and sweaty and ready for some…twinkies, hot dogs, and rednecks on vacation!  Wonderful.  Christian was downstairs brewing some beer and gave us a taste of his most recent brew, which was delicious and super alcoholic.  Win win.  We would have loved to stay here forever, but rules are rules.  30 minutes (and a blow of the whistle that Molly found) later and we were back out the street.

Before we could hit our next stop, one out of town hiker had to see/race up Filbert Street, which is supposedly not only the steepest street in San Francisco, but at 31.5%, one of the steepest streets in the whole Western Hemisphere.  Maybe we were on the wrong part of the street, but general consensus was that there are way steeper hills in the city.  Whatever.

ANYWAY, onward and upward (literally) to…

Fifth Stop: Molly’s, back in the Tendernob

This was one of the shorter legs of the hike and we celebrated at the end with Bud Lights, gossip mags, and bathroom breaks.  Amazing how fast 30 minutes can fly by.  But soon enough there was another toot of the whistle and we were out the door…

At a little over 6 miles we had already completed 5 of our 8 stops, but had done less than half the overall distance.  So far so good, but the serious hiking was about to start.

To be continued…

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