When it comes to finding locations for that picture-perfect shot of the Golden Gate Bridge, the Presidio offers many choices - the Main Post, East Beach, and the scenic overlooks along Lincoln Boulevard, to name a few. But there's one spot that just might have them all beat: Torpedo Wharf. Located a short distance from the West Bluff picnic area, Torpedo Wharf offers unmatched views of the International Orange icon as well as of the San Francisco city skyline.
Built to aid in the construction of nearby Fort Point, there's been a wharf at this site since 1854. Over the years, it's been rebuilt several times and finally became "Torpedo Wharf" when the U.S. Army constructed a submarine mine depot here around 1907-1909. The U.S. Army used the wharf to plant underwater mines as part of the harbor defense.
These days, the current wharf – which dates back to 1941 – is used for more peaceful activities. Besides the snap-happy tourists who come here to take epic selfies, Torpedo Wharf is a popular destination for locals looking to do some crabbing or fishing. If you want to try your luck, remember Dungeness crabs are off limits, but there are still plenty of red crabs and rock crabs available!
Winds can pick up fairly quickly on the wharf, so be sure to bring extra layers with you. If you're looking for a cozy shelter, there's always the Warming Hut Park Store and Café – conveniently located near the wharf so you can easily take a break to grab a hot cocoa on a cold day.