2013: A Unique Trail, Complete with “Musing Stations,” is Dedicated in San Francisco

January 5, 2013

Philosopher’s Way, a 2.7-mile (4.3-kilometer) loop trail around the perimeter of John McLaren Park in San Francisco, was opened to the public. This trail is the first and only one in the United States to be built primarily for philosophers. The key features of Philosopher’s Way include a total of 14 stone markers that were created by mason George Gonzalez and are meant to serve as “musing stations” to help foster contemplation for those walking on the trail.

Philosopher’s Way was designed by Peter Richards and Susan Schwartzenberg, staff artists at the Exploratorium (a San Francisco-based museum of arts, science, and technology). When designing this trail, Richards and Schwartzenberg drew inspiration from similar paths that have been developed in major cities such as Heidelberg, Germany; Kyoto, Japan; and Toronto, Canada.

Another key aspect of Philosopher’s Way involves its scenic views of Angel Island, Mount Diablo, Mount Tamalpais, and the Pacific Ocean. “It puts you in the center of all the components of where we live, of what gives the Bay Area its character,” Richards said about the trail at the time of its formal debut. “You can place yourself in the region.”

Photo Credit: Drpaluga at English Wikipedia (licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license at https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/deed.en)

For more information on Philosopher’s Way, please check out https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Philosopher%27s_Way,_San_Francisco

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