Monday, January 5, 2009

The San Francisco Peninsula -- a Special Place Indeed!

As we begin the New Year, it has once again occurred to me how really special is this place where we live -- the "Peninsula" evokes many images and meanings for all of us. The verdant hills in spring, morphing into the golden hills of summer. The fog bank rolling in over the mountains in the late afternoon or burning off mid-morning in summer to reveal another perfect day...

We are blessed to live here. I became curious as to how the "experts" would describe this magical place. The following is from Wikipedia --

San Francisco Peninsula
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

USGS Satellite photo of the San Francisco Bay Area. The San Francisco peninsula protrudes northward. San Francisco is at its tip. San Francisco Bay Area portal
The San Francisco Peninsula in California separates the San Francisco Bay from the Pacific Ocean. On its northern tip is the city of San Francisco. Its southern end is part of Santa Clara County, including the cities of Palo Alto, Los Altos, and Mountain View. San Mateo County, located south of San Francisco, includes Atherton, Belmont, Brisbane, Burlingame, Colma, Daly City, East Palo Alto, El Granada, Foster City, Half Moon Bay, Hillsborough, La Honda, Menlo Park, Millbrae, Montara, Pacifica, Pescadero, Portola Valley, Redwood City, San Bruno, San Carlos, San Gregorio, San Mateo, South San Francisco, and Woodside.

"The Peninsula", used as a local geographic term, refers only to the parts south of, and excluding, the city of San Francisco. It is roughly equivalent to the area served by the 650 area code, or to San Mateo County itself. A couple of the aforementioned cities in the northern part of the county are considered to be suburbs of San Francisco, Daly City and South San Francisco in particular. Parts of the peninsula on the bay side are sometimes referred to as the "West Bay".

The east side of the peninsula is a largely densely populated area that includes portions of Silicon Valley. It forms a commuter area between San Francisco to the north and San Jose to the south. A number of major thoroughfares run north-south: El Camino Real (SR 82) and US 101 on the east side along the bay, Interstate 280 down the center, Skyline Boulevard (SR 35) along the crest of the Santa Cruz Mountains, and Highway 1 on the west along the Pacific. The Caltrain commuter rail line runs roughly parallel to the El Camino and Highway 101 corridors.

Three bridges—the Dumbarton Bridge, the San Mateo-Hayward Bridge, and the San Francisco – Oakland Bay Bridge—cross San Francisco Bay from the Peninsula. To the north, the Golden Gate Bridge connects San Francisco with Marin County

Along the center line of the Peninsula is the northern half of the Santa Cruz Mountains, formed by the action of plate tectonics along the San Andreas Fault. In the middle of the Peninsula along the fault is the Crystal Springs reservoir. Just north of the Crystal Springs reservoir is San Andreas Lake after which the famous geologic fault was named.

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