Are you hoping to bike around San Francisco without sweating your way up its infamous hills? It can be done—if you know where to go. And more often than not, that means passing by a mural so long it takes a full 30 seconds to bike by.
The 400-foot mural, known as the Duboce Parkway Mural, depicts a bike journey through the entire city, from downtown by the Bay to the sand dunes of Ocean Beach. Volunteer artists working with the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition created the painted scene to celebrate the parkway, the city’s first stretch of road to be transformed by removing car traffic. Some of the fanciful flourishes include an anthropomorphized Transamerica Pyramid (previously the city’s tallest skyscraper); flying machines that represent the area’s inventive, entrepreneurial zeal; and a giant raccoon (a regular sight on late-night rides).
You may also notice a curving streambed, which you won’t actually find burbling its way past Victorians, at least in this century. A creek did once run through what is now the Haight, and cyclists bike its former path every day. This route is known as the Wiggle, and its zig-zagging trajectory takes cyclists from Market Street and the site of the mural up to the Haight neighborhood and Golden Gate Park—all while bypassing the steepest inclines. It’s a beloved feature of the bike-friendly city, making the pathway that serves as a gateway to the Wiggle worthy of a world-class mural.
Know Before You Go
You don’t have to be cycling past to appreciate the mural: You can inspect it on foot from the sidewalk. The KT, N, J, and F Muni lines, as well as several buses, all stop nearby.