By: Andrea Buffa
Save Our Recreation

It’s a well-known fact that San Francisco is a city of dog lovers. With an estimated 160,000 dogs, it’s not surprising that the old story about San Francisco having more dogs than children turns out to be true. What is surprising is that the National Park Service is trying to severely restrict access to the Golden Gate National Recreation Area (GGNRA) for dogs and their human companions.

But it’s not just about the dogs. The GGNRA is proposing a new management plan that endangers all recreation and is a dramatic departure from how the GGNRA has been successfully managed for more than 40 years. The new plan will create special zones, covering most of the GGNRA, where public access and recreation will be severely limited—if not eliminated altogether—in this recreational area. Not only will San Franciscans be restricted from recreating with their dogs, but long standing activities such as hiking, surfing, bike riding and horseback riding could also be limited.

Decades ago, the City and County of San Francisco transferred the management of the GGNRA to the Parks Service with the promise that these lands would provide much needed recreational, open space to this urban population. Today, the National Park Service should remember that promise and continue to keep this recreational area open to San Franciscans—even the four-legged ones.

San Francisco now has the largest population in the city’s entire history and is the third-fastest growing county in California. We think that a crowded city like San Francisco needs more recreation, not less. That’s why we’re organizing an umbrella group of people and organizations called Save Our Recreation. You can find out more about us at