Our travel editor offers snapshots and thoughts on golf in and around San Francisco
The third hole at Olympic Lake was the only par 3 where you could see the green from the tee until they built the new eighth hole.
It's no Bat Phone, but it is the direct line to one of the best turn burgers in golf. I've witnessed even the strictest of vegetarians indulge in a Bill (Parrish) Burger whose family recipe is now carried on by his daughter at Olympic and his son at Silverado.
Behold, the "Bill Burger," aka burger dog. It's a burger, cut and cooked so it fits in a hot dog bun. I take mine with cheese, sweet relish and mustard.
The 18th at Olympic Lake. It's narrow off the tee to an elevated green with a famous false front.
I didn't get to play the Ocean course, but I did get to play the Cliffs, one of the best par-3 courses in the country. This is the starter shed.
The fourth is one of the few holes at the Cliffs that actually runs along the cliff overlooking the Pacific Ocean. There are times when you have to wait for hang gliders to get out of the way before you can hit your shot.
After 18 at the Lake, you'll find my golf ego at the bottom of this tub.
This is as much as I can show you of the San Francisco Golf Club, a Tillinghast special, and arguably one of the best pure golf experiences I've ever had. I put it up there with Cypress, Pine Valley, Fishers Island and the Old Course.
Enough talk of private golf – welcome to Harding Park, one of the healthiest public golf experiences I've had since Bethpage. This is the 440-yard 14th.
Harding is packed with walking locals in a wide variety of ages and races, all benefitting from discounted green fees and a course that's in great condition. This is shot from the back of the seventh green.
Crew teams practice on neighboring Lake Merced.
Harding's 18th is a fun finishing hole.
This marching army of kids in Harding Park's First Tee program was kind enough to pause for a portrait.
The 130-yard fourth at Presidio is one of the few holes on the course that I'd consider "easy."
If you're lucky enough to get to play Lincoln Park on a day when fog isn't a factor, then the 240-yard 17th will easily be one of the favorite par 3s you've ever played. It's common to see players tee one up and take aim at the Golden Gate Bridge.
Given the view of the Golden Gate from the tee, you rarely see a shot of Lincoln's 17th green.
If Lincoln's Bar & Grill could talk, you might hear stories about some of the greatest names in Bay Area golf, such as George Archer.
The clubhouse at Sharp Park in Pacifica, an Alister Mackenzie original, that recently celebrated an 80th anniversary.
The 17th green at Sharp Park is one of the better putting surfaces on a course that suffers from a small maintenance budget. I asked one local, "Are the greens usually this bad?" "No," he said, "they're usually worse."
You can get a sweet deal on used golf balls between Sharp's third green and fourth tee: $.25 for balls out of the bag on the left; $.10 for balls out of the bag on the right.
For Sharp's best view of the Pacific Ocean, climb the grassy slope behind the 12th hole.
Pasatiempo is in Santa Cruz, but if and when I'm in the Bay Area, I always make time to make it part of my itinerary. This is the 214-yard third hole, which plays a lot longer than the posted yardage.
This plaque is in the cart path along Pasatiempo's sixth fairway, outside the house where designer Alister Mackenzie lived until he died. It reads: "It is the successful negotiation of difficulties, or what appears to be such, which gives rise to the pleasurable excitement and makes a hole interesting."
From the back of Pasatiempo's 500-yard ninth.
The approach to the 531-yard 13th is one of the better displays of Mackenzie bunkering, which was restored by Tom Doak.
Pasatiempo's 387-yard 16th hole, which features a four-tiered green, belongs on the list of the best par 4s in the country.
Pasatiempo ends with a 169-yard par 3, which bothers some, but doesn't bother me. (Nothing about Pasatiempo bothers me.)
As a Padres fan, it pains me to say how much I like to watch baseball at AT&T Park.
Where should you eat while in San Francisco? You'll find me in North Beach at Original Joe's or Capp's Corner. I'm single, so the Stinking Rose is out of my rota.
The Golden Gate Bridge is the most beautiful bridge in the world, but this view of the Bay Bridge, out of my window at the W hotel, wasn't a bad way to wake up every morning.