Upon reaching the foot of the pier I found a new sign next to the usual "No taking dungeness crabs." The sign featured a rather alarming illustration of the pier collapsing and stick figures falling and struggling in the water, which would be great for the Flickr group Stick Figures in Peril if someone wants to go out there with a camera. The text of the sign basically said that the pier was in bad shape, and might collapse in an earthquake, so if you went on it anyway it was at your own risk and you were advised not to congregate in groups. Hmm.
Though I can't swim, I decided to gamble that an earthquake wouldn't hit during the next few minutes, and run the pier one last time. A number of people were still out there walking, jogging, and fishing, though part of the pier was gated off with more of the stick-figures-in-peril signs. I enjoyed the views, but felt more relaxed when I got back on the main path. From now on I'll either turn around at the foot of the pier, or find another route if I need to get that extra few yards into my run.
I didn't even try to run up the steep part of Hyde Street this time; walking it slowly was hard enough. Made it back in 46'45" for a glacial 15.3 minutes/mile pace. Only way I'm going to improve my times significantly on this route is to 1) get up earlier to beat the traffic and blow through the red lights, and 2) somehow run up that hill. The former is doable, while the latter will take a lot more time.