Can I get the fog under the Golden Gate Bridge on Doc Miles Photo Tours?

July 15, 2014  •  Leave a Comment

Fog in the HollowFog in the Hollow

When booking tours for Doc Miles Photo Tours, I am often asked if we will be able to capture a view of the fog under the Golden Gate Bridge. The answer is not a simple one. The hills surrounding the Golden Gate are an extension of the Santa Cruz Mountains. As the cold marine layer lies off shore it is pulled in by rising temperatures on the eastern side of the hills and farther inland. July and August often provide a great contrast to the temperatures which vary from 55ºƒ at the Golden Gate to 80º-100ºƒ+ inland. 

It is not uncommon to drive north through the Waldo Tunnel and have a temperature swing of 20ºƒ-30ºƒ. This weather phenomenon is strongest during July and August and can produce very strong winds at the Golden Gate and along the shore.  Living close to the Golden Gate Bridge makes lounging on the patio on balmy summer nights quite a windy affair. The wind can be so strong that it blows out the flame on even your gas fired BBQ grill.

But as September rolls around inland temperatures cool a bit and even into October we experience nice sunny days with temperatures into the high 60s or 70s.  The fog at this time can be at its most whimsical , darting around and under the Golden Gate Bridge, engulfing it one minute and whisking back out to sea  the next.  Then in late fall and winter, the more moist temperatures in the Sacramento Valley can cause heavy fog around the bridge that will come into the Golden Gate from the opposite direction and linger very low under the Golden Gate Bridge.

Iconic shots of  fog under the Golden Gate Bridge come from having your camera with you and at the right place at the right time.. It is not well known that the famous San Francisco fog horns located under the span of the Golden Gate Bridge are only turned on manually when the fog is under the bridge.  I live close enough to the south tower of the bridge and if I can hear the fog horns but can see that the tower is visible, I load up the camera gear and head over to the Golden Gate. Many of my favorite  shots were captured this way and you can see them on my website

Quite often on Doc Miles Photo Tours we get lucky and hit the fog just right and the effort pays off. Other times we opt for little known locations to catch a spectacular view from an out of the ordinary angle. Either way we get unforgettable shots.   


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Photography Tours of San Francisco and Yosemite. 

Doc Miles Photography Tours 415-742-0266 or 415-244-5655

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