Self-Guided Hike: Tennessee Hollow Watershed

What better way to enjoy a rainy day than by exploring Tennessee Hollow - the Presidio’s largest watershed, encompassing 20 percent of the park

  • Hikes


Visitor Strolling Through MacArthur Meadow

The hike begins with a natural spring, which is eventually fed by two joining creeks. The waters then flow north to Crissy Marsh through a variety of habitats where native plants, birds, and other wildlife thrive, and ultimately join the bay and ocean. For centuries, people have used this creek system as a water source, beginning with the native Ohlone and later Spanish settlers. The U.S. Army substantially altered where and how it flows, pushing its waters underground in many areas in order to build on the land above. This two-mile walk traces a large section of the creek system where, for the past 15 years, restoration projects have brought habitats back to life. Along the way, you’ll learn about some significant people and moments in Presidio history.

Distance: 2 miles

Time: 2 hours

Level: Moderate but has some gradual hills and stairs

Access/Parking: We recommend parking at Inspiration Point across from the Presidio Golf Course

Restrooms: El Polin Spring and Crissy Field

Timing: Parking may be more difficult on weekends


Our recommendation is different than the brochure but you can follow the map using the points in this order:

  • Start at point 7 (Inspiration Point)
  • Go to 6, 5 (go around El Polin Spring), 3, 4 (continue across bridge on to Presidio Blvd – turn left here), 2, 1, 9, 10, 11, 12
  • To return to Inspiration Point from point 12, follow the map to points in this order:
  • 11, 10, 9, 1 (at this point go straight on Funston Ave), just before the Inn turn left down the stairs
  • At the bottom of the stairs turn right on Barnard and take that to the end of the road, point 8
  • Turn right onto the trail in the cul de sac, then left on the Ecology Trail to point 6, then 7