There’s a 100% chance of fog all year round at San Francisco’s Exploratorium. Fog Bridge is a 150-foot pedestrian bridge between Piers 15 and 17 where an immense cloud of water vapor intermittently shrouds passersby.
Japanese artist Fujiko Nakaya installed the Exploratorium’s massive Fog Bridge in 2013 as an homage to the city. The bridge is lined with over 800 nozzles that spray clouds of water vapor into the air to create temporary fog banks that are so thick you can truly get lost in them. The nozzles spray for about 6 minutes, which is more than enough time to envelop the entire bridge and everyone on it.
Fujiko Nakaya is the daughter of famed physicist Ukichiro Nakaya, whose work encompasses glaciology and snow crystal photography. Her subsequent fascination with the element of water inspired her first artificial fog installation at the 1970 World Exposition in Osaka.
Nakaya collaborated with LA-based engineer Thomas Mee to develop a system that creates water-based fog in order to forgo the need for chemicals, and Nakaya’s fog geysers, gardens, and falls have now been installed all around the world. Fog Bridge at the Exploratorium is one her few permanent works, the others of which can be found at Nakaya Ukichoro Museum of Snow and Ice in Ishikawa, Japan; the Australian National Gallery in Canberra; and the Jardin de L’Eau, in the Parc de la Villette, Paris.
The Exploratorium’s installation was temporarily deactivated in 2014 in response to California’s drought, but was later modified to run on desalinated water from the Bay.
Pedestrians can access Fog Bridge for free between Piers 15 and 17 at San Francisco’s Embarcadero. It is activated daily at 10am, 12pm, 2pm, and 4pm; and on Thursdays at 7pm during After Dark.