Golden Gate Bridge
The Golden Gate Bridge (Highway 101 North) links San Francisco with Marin County. Before its completion in 1937, the bridge was considered unbuildable because of foggy weather, 60-mile-per-hour winds and strong ocean currents sweeping through a deep rugged canyon below. At a cost of $35 million, the 1.2-mile bridge took more than four years to build. Eleven men lost their lives during construction.
Often shrouded in thick fog, the bridge sways 27 feet to withstand winds of up to 100 miles per hour. The color of the bridge, known as International Orange, was chosen because it blends well with the bridge's natural surroundings. The two great cables contain enough strands of steel wire (80,000 miles) to encircle the equator three times. The concrete poured into its piers and anchorages would pave a five-foot wide sidewalk from New York to San Francisco.
Pedestrians and bicyclists are allowed across the bridge on pathways with sweeping views of the City, Alcatraz and the Marin Headlands. The bridge toll for vehicles is $5 collected when entering San Francisco.
The first exit on the Marin side of the bridge, Vista Point, provides outstanding views of the San Francisco skyline and tends to be crowded. Other vantage points include the Toll Plaza and Visitors Center (before crossing the bridge), Fort Point (under the bridge) and the Marin Headlands (the last exit in Marin County before crossing the bridge). The best way to see the bridge is to walk across it which takes about an hour. When walking the bridge dress warmly whatever time of year.