New Site, New Views

Hello Everyone! In this post, I will be talking about my new internship site, Golden Gate National Recreation Area (GGNRA). GGNRA is located In California and includes over 81,000 acres of land that span over three counties (Marin, San Fransisco, and San Mateo County). The park is home to over 2,000 plant and animal species and is designated as a Biosphere Reserve by UNESCO and a Site of Conscience by the International Coalition of Sites of Conscience. GGNRA has a large urban interface and offers various experiences for its visitors. For example, the Marin Headlands allows visitors to escape the bustle of San Fransisco and recreate in a more traditional wildland setting. While the Presidio area of GGNRA, located just south of the Golden Gate Bridge, combines natural areas with the surrounding urban interface to provide a unique, hybrid experience for visitors.

NPS Map of the Presidio in Golden Gate National Recreation Area.

Most of my work is focused in the Presidio area of GGNRA. However, GGNRA recently acquired some areas outside of the Presidio known as Lands End, Fort Miley, and Fort Funston that I also work at on occasion. The Presidio is home to twelve plants recognized as either threatened or endangered! This is incredible when the amount of urbanization in the area is considered. A few of the species found here include Raven’s Mazanita (Arctostaphylos hookerii ssp. ravenii), San Fransisco Wallflower (Erysimum franciscanum), and San Fransisco Lessingia (Lessingia germanorum).

Out of all the subsites in the Presidio that I have worked at, I really enjoy working in Lobos Valley. This site offers a little bit of everything including ocean views, dune landscapes, a flowing creek, and even an interpretive boardwalk trail. The reason I enjoy working at this site is the fact that the surrounding area is mostly urban, but in certain areas of Lobos Valley, you might forget that you are actually in the city. This site is also home to a few rare and endangered plant species, which again, is incredible when you consider the surrounding environment. Another site that I have enjoyed learning about and that I think is truly incredible is Crissy Field and its transformation from a concrete wasteland to a coastal habitat. If you are interested in reading about this massive undertaking, check out the link below. I am very excited to continue working and learning about the sites that our team manages here at GGNRA!

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