Twin Peaks – Still Appalling – Mount Sutro’s Future?

Over a year ago, we drove up to Twin Peaks, an example of a mountain very like Mount Sutro — but without the trees. Everyone goes to Twin Peaks, but they’re usually there for the views (which are doubtless absolutely magnificent and never get old).

That day, we were there to look at Twin Peaks, not from Twin Peaks. What we saw was appalling. Rock slides. Trash. Graffiti. Roundup and Garlon toxic herbicides.

We’ve been back a lot since then. Nothing much has changed. There’s still trash.

Must have been some party!

And graffiti (different graffiti, with the same white-washed walls as canvases).

Graffiti opportunities

Of course there’s Garlon (which we see in spring and fall quite regularly) and instead of Roundup, Aquamaster (also a glyphosate herbicide). Both these pesticides are known to be toxic, with birth defects as one of the effects. They’re used all over Twin Peaks, including in the ‘Natural Resource Area’ which is the Native Plant area.

"natural areas" and pesticides


Glyphosate and Triclopyr are associated with birth defects

And, with the first heavy rain of the season, a rock slide. Where it occurred, it was relatively innocuous. On Mount Sutro, there could have been  houses or cars in the way.

Coming soon to a mountain near you?

Is this what we have to look forward to as UCSF and the Mount Sutro Stewards fell the trees first on 7.5 acres and then 40 more acres, and use the same toxic herbicides to prevent the brambles and trees from resprouting?

This entry was posted in Environment, Herbicides: Roundup, Garlon, Mount Sutro Stewards, Mt Sutro landslide risk, Neighborhood impact, UCSF and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

5 Responses to Twin Peaks – Still Appalling – Mount Sutro’s Future?

  1. HarryEye says:

    People will wonder why this was allowed to happen – when it’s too late. Those “stewards” will move on to another forest and chop that down too.
    Wrong on so many levels. UCSF pretends to have community input but they just do whatever is dictated by these anti-forest folks.

  2. Alicia snow says:

    Does anyone at UCSF who can make policy decisions check these posts?
    If not, does our webmaster send these posts to these administrators?

    • webmaster says:

      We don’t send individual posts to UCSF decision-makers, but they are aware of this website. We don’t know if they read it or ignore it. We’ve found UCSF very open to the forms of public input, but very closed to the content. In other words, lots of meetings, no changes.

  3. Jonas says:

    I found this site to be a great and informative guide to the forest, and it still is. But its when one reads into your pro-Sutro Forest argument is where things go south. Its extremely disingenuous and misleading.

    Second it is city-owned and given the city budget crisis right now, its not surprising that its falling into disrepair. They simply don’t have the resources to keep it up in shape

    I think you guys should stick to just being a great guide for the forest, and not being so biased and one-sided to your cause which is not a full and solid argument and sullies your cause. You guys are seemingly so hostile to native restoration, when it fact it has done wonders for other areas of the city where its been done with the best example being the Presidio and especially Crissy Field, the Coastal Bluffs, and Baker Beach which incidentally and ironically enough, there is no mention of it as far as your anti-“Nativist” argument.

    • webmaster says:

      Jonas, thanks for coming by to comment, and thanks for your compliment about the site.

      I personally don’t know enough about the Presidio to comment about it, but I do know a lot of people were dismayed at the destruction of trees there. I don’t think the other areas you mention are comparable to Sutro Forest, whereas I think Twin Peaks and Tank Hill are.

      Frankly, I’d love to just stick with being a great guide to the forest… I had hopes that at some point, those with stewardship of the area would recognize it for the unique ecological treasure it is, and we would be on the same page. Then this site would have carried mainly the kind of articles we like best to write: Lyrical stories about walking in the Cloud Forest, pictures of great horned owls and forest flowers, and lush blackberry and cloudy eucs.

      It’s not happening. The current plan is to “thin” almost all the forest, mow down the understory, cut the vines off, and have the remaining trees spaced an average of 30-60 feet apart, and build more trails — and plant native plants. We think this will destroy the existing ecology, and change it into something much less wonderful.

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