EXPLORE: Batteries of Fort Winfield Scott, Presidio National Park

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When the kids tire of the neighborhood playground Battery Boutelleand need to let off some steam, take them to the old abandoned batteries of Fort Scott, in the Presidio. Fort Scott was established as a coastal artillery post in 1912 and housed seventeen functioning batteries until after World War II.  You can explore fifteen of them today in a beautiful national park with a rich military history. These batteries right along the Pacific Ocean offer great views for the adults and endless hours of entertainment for the kids—as well as a history lesson for all.

Battery Godfrey’s got nooks and crannies galore for a round of “hide and go seek.”   For more exploration, take the family on a chase to Battery Blaney and Battery Marcus Miller.

If putting on a talent show is more up your kids’ alley, Battery Boutelle makes an amazing stage.  Short staircases lead to elevated landings where they can dance, sing, or perform a play with the ocean and Golden Gate Bridge as the backdrop.  Don’t forget your camera!

Check out some real action at Battery Chamberlin on the first Saturday and Sunday of every month.  There is a live demonstration of its 50-ton rifle that is sure to please the eyes and ears of the adventuresome.  Your little historian will enjoy the underground cartridge room that is now a small seacoast defense museum.

—Sarah K. Choi