Goats help expose century-old scenic garden walks in SF

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- The Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy is taking a different approach to renovating Black Point in San Francisco's Fort Mason and they're uncovering some treasures in the process. The cleanup involves goats chomping their way through overgrown grasses and brush.

"Black Point used to be all curated gardens with walkways, pathways, benches, and picnic areas," said Jessica Kipp, a goatherd with City Grazing.

There are 80 goats that roam the steep hillside of Black Point, continuously grazing on the weeds. The area overlooks Alcatraz and the San Francisco Bay. Cindy Shaw, a San Francisco resident and neighbor of Fort Mason, often comes to Black Point for walks.

"This is just a treat to have even more beautiful open space," she said. "The goats are on a treasure hunt."

Around Black Point, several old artifacts have been found. Kipp describes finding old Budweiser bottles dating back to the 1950s and 1960s. After the goats have done their job, she hopes that people will come to enjoy the view and scenery that Black Point provides.

The goats and City Grazing will be working to uncover history through the rest of August. The first phase of construction will begin in 2018. When complete, scenic garden paths will be open to the public.

Kipp described, "It is a time capsule up here. I'm sure as they continue to clean it out, they are going to find more and more."
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