San Francisco Parks and Recreation,
San Francisco County
Under 1 mile hike through eucalypus forest and sunny canyon.
Distance, category, and difficulty:
This 0.9 mile hike is easy. Trailhead elevation is around 250 feet. Highest (reachable) elevation in the park is around 500 feet. There are a few steep stretches, but the trail is short. If you have a yen to bushwhack or rock climb, you can continue uphill past the end of the maintained trail, but beware of the extensive poison oak.
More shade than sun.
Dirt trails and paved fire road.
Less than 1 hour.
Nice any time.
From northbound interstate 280 in San Francisco, exit San Jose. Stay in the right lane and make the first right on Rousseau. Drive one block and take the first right onto Bosworth. Continue on Bosworth, crossing Diamond, and then Elk (where there's a traffic light; stay in the left lane to continue straight). Take the next right to remain on Bosworth (the road continuing uphill becomes O'Shaughnessy Boulevard). Park on the side of the road before the gate.
From southbound interstate 280 in San Francisco, exit Monterey. At the end of the ramp, make a sharp right. At the next light, turn left on Diamond. Drive one block, then turn left onto Bosworth. Continue on Bosworth, past Elk (where there's a traffic light; stay in the left lane to continue straight). Take the next right to remain on Bosworth (the road continuing uphill becomes O'Shaughnessy Boulevard). Park on the side of the road before the gate.
Get driving or public transit directions from Transit and Trails:
GPS Coordinates* for Trailhead:
(* based on Google Earth data, shown as degrees, minutes, seconds)
Gas, food, and lodging:
Stores and restaurants nearby on Diamond and Chenery. Gas up on Portola. No camping.
Limited parking at the end of a street in a residential neighborhood; more parking on surrounding streets. Elk is usually a good choice. No entrance or parking fees. No facilities. The park is accessed by the number 44 bus (get off at Elk), and is short walk from the Glen Park BART station. No designated handicapped parking, and the trails are not well-suited to wheelchairs. Read about cautions for urban hikes here.
Dogs permitted. No other rules are posted, but you won't find bicyclists or equestrians at this park.
Use AAA's San Francisco and Vicinity map to get there.
Trails of the Coastside and Northern Peninsula (map) is a great guide (available from Pease Press).
View photos from Glen Canyon
in a little canyon between residential neighborhoods,
Glen Canyon Park is a small open space parcel, but a delight for local
dogwalkers and nature enthusiasts. Red tail hawks are frequently seen
soaring above the park, and raccoon, skunk, and possum paw prints smudge
the dirt. On my last visit, I spotted a northern alligator lizard basking
in the sun. Although nonnative plants and poison oak are prominent, you
also might see monkeyflowers and coyote brush. The biggest surprise (and
most significant reason for keeping this canyon undeveloped) is Islais
Creek, an actual stream running through the canyon. It may be the last
naturally occurring, unobstructed creek in all of San Francisco.