The snowscape view from my apartment in Diamond Heights, February 4, 1976. The last time it snowed in San Francisco. (c) Bill Fox, 1976
1976 Snow on Red Rock Way 0200 Hrs. February 4, 1976 (c) Bill Fox 1976
This article originally appeared in the San Francisco Chronicle
At midnight, I got off work at Park Station and drove home to my apartment in Diamond Heights on Red Rock Way. The place had a 12-foot bay window which opened onto a sweeping panorama of half of San Francisco and six Bay Area counties. Inside I lit my fireplace, poured a Jack Daniels and collapsed in front of the window to unwind looking out at the city.
About 0130, to my amazement, snowflakes began to collect on the window sill. I was a San Francisco kid — Sunset district — I’d never seen snow fall before. I slid open the window and stuck my head out and felt the snowflakes hitting my ears. For about 20 minutes, in the middle of that San Francisco night, I stood in my window and watched it snow so hard I could barely see across the street.
When it stopped about 0150, I got my camera, went outside and experienced snow crunching beneath my feet on Red Rock Way in San Francisco! Even more amazing, I had the snow and the moment all to myself — no one else was awake.
I debated whether I should start to scream, “Snow! Snow! Snow!” But didn’t.
There was about 2 inches of snow on the ground. You can see my foot prints in the snow in one of the pictures. Unfortunately, I only had six frames left on a roll of the old GAF 500 film (a horrible grainy color slide film).
I took three pictures of Red Rock Way and the snowy fireplug and the city in the background. I saved the remaining three frames for morning.
Sad, that early morning San Francisco snow has turned out to be literally once-in-a- lifetime event, but I’m extremely grateful to have experienced one of the most unique and beautiful moments in the city’s history.