Brooks Park - A Hidden Gem

Title text: Shelter in the Greatest Place laid over a photo of Nora's dog, Independent, and another dog running gleefully through a San Francisco park.

This article written by Nora Hemm, longtime SB marketer and all-around supporter, and even longer-time dog lover and snowboarding queen.

Photo of pups running on a hill.Not only do I get cabin fever after about 12 hours, but my dog Independent is young and large and is one of those energetic breeds that just needs to run a lot. I grew up in the southern side of San Francisco and while I've always known that Brooks Park existed, in recent years I've really learned to love it. It's nestled up on the hill that breaks up the Ingleside and Lakeview neighborhoods, and it overlooks the golf course, Park Merced, and the ocean on one side. On the other side you can see Mt. Davidson and Sutro. At sunset, the views of the ocean and the Farallon Islands, and the swirling paths through fields and trees has captured my heart. There are BBQ pits and a community garden, but me and my pup's favorite part is the large, hillside field with a view of the Pacific to live for.

Independent & I have been coming here since he was able to walk on the ground and we barely ever run into another person or dog - which we definitely prefer. I appreciate the alone time with the sounds of nature or occasionally some Billy Strings or Lost Dog Street Band to accentuate the surroundings. Personally, I have a huge need to stay away from people right now anyway. My mom is high risk; I live with her and I'm her main caretaker as well.

Photo of the trees and a view of the hillsBut now with the lack of work and stay-at-home order, we've been seeing a few more neighbors visiting with their pups or carrying a plant or trowel to the community garden. While I would love to keep my little Brooks Park gem a secret, my plan instead is to share this beauty with those who will appreciate and love the park as I do, especially in these trying times. Yes, we need to stay 6 feet apart, but we also have a need to come together as a community, to support each other and give each other hope.

So, I'll see you there with your pup - we can air high five from a safe distance!

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