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Redwood Park

Redwood Regional Park

July 25th, 1999

6.1 miles
865 vertical feet
Total Time: 3:08

Rating: 6/10

Directions:   View Driving Map


Jean and I hiked in Redwood Regional Park in Oakland.

We parked in the Canyon Meadow Staging Area. There's currently a parking fee of $3.50. There are lots of nice picnic areas here, and some people were already taking advantage of them in the early afternoon.

Amphitheater

The first three quarters of a mile of the trail are paved. Bikes are allowed on this section, but not past the pavement. Along the way are several picnic areas and a small outdoor amphitheater. The trail treads through a beautiful redwood forest. Side trails explore more of the forest on either side of the Stream Trail. The stream isn't much to speak of -- not much more than a trickle by this time of year.

Butterfly on a thistle

After the pavement there are more redwoods, and a few ferns (especially near the Fern Hut). Expect to share the trail with many other casual weekend hikers, and a few runners. This is one of the few parks which allow dogs, so expect to see a lot of them, too. At one point it seemed that every hiking group we saw had a dog.

Sometime after the fern hut you say goodbye to the redwoods. The shade disappears, but there's still interesting vegetation on either side. Among the vegetation are horsetails, fennel, thistle, berries, eucalyptus, and poison oak. Also along this stretch are a number of plum trees. The trees are filled with tiny plums, most of them too high to reach (the animals must have already picked the low-hanging fruit).

Picking fruit!

We saw a dog chase a deer into the bushes, only to be called back by its owner. Unleashed dogs are allowed, but the owner must have a leash with them, and be within voice range.

The trail climbs up to the Skyline Gate Staging Area parking lot. Bikes are allowed on the East Ridge Trail, and they take full advantage of it, kicking up clouds of dust on the sandy trail. The vegetation is markedly different here. Instead of redwood trees or plum trees, there are pine trees providing ample shade.

Soon that shade disappears, however, and the trail from here on is relatively uninteresting. There are a few views of the surrounding hillsides, but better views are to be had in Tilden and Wildcat Canyon Regional Parks.

The trail goes through rolling hills before dropping off steeply along Canyon Trail to the Canyon Meadow Staging area.


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