March 30, 2013

Lagoon Valley Park

We had a chance to visit a park this weekend that we didn't know existed until a few months ago. Lagoon Valley Park is just a few minutes off of Highway 80 in Vacaville, CA on Pena Adobe Road. Entrance fee is $3 and there is ample parking. We were there for a trail race which was based out of the Rotary Grove Group Area. Aside from several group areas there is also an enclosed dog park, BBQ pits, trails for hiking/running/biking and of course a lagoon for fishing and non-motorized boating. We were there for the Lagoon Valley trail race by Brazen Racing which took us on a loop around the lagoon as well as high into the parks hills. Of note none of the parks trails are named so it is really important to have a map with you to find your way back. We were lucky in that we were there with a large group of runners doing the race and the race organizers temporarily named the trails for the event so as to match with the maps they provided. The loop around the lagoon is about two miles and flat, making it a great place for a walk. There are single track and wide fire roads leading into and out of the surrounding hills for people up for a more challenging tour of the park. We were lucky in that the race course took us up into the hills providing some great views of the lagoon and surrounding area. With the park being so easily accessible from the freeway we definitely plan on going back for some more exploring.

Lagoon Valley Trail Race

March 24, 2013

Sunol Regional Wilderness

We headed out to Sunol Regional Wilderness for a trail run and also to pick up our 2013 Trails Challenge T-Shirts. This is our fourth year doing the challenge. It's also it's 20th anniversary. The shirts are cotton and gray in color this year with their 20th anniversary logo on the front. The East Bay Regional Park District (EBRPD) Trails Challenge is a self guided hiking program with the purpose to encourage people to get outdoors and enjoy their regional parks. The program is free for Alameda and Contra Costa County residents. It is also free for Kaiser Permanente employees who reside in Northern California. Upon registration you will be able to download the guidebook and pick up your free t-shirt at select park visitor centers. To complete the challenge you either travel five of the trails or travel 26.2 miles of the featured trails from the guidebook. Upon completion you submit a trail log and will receive a commemorative pin. Remember t-shirts and pins are available while supplies last.

As for our run we started off at the Visitor Center on Geary Road and climbed up Indian Joe Nature Trail and Canyon View Trail. We passed close to Little Yosemite before enjoying the relatively flat Camp Ohlone Road, a fire road. We took a moment to enjoy the "W" tree, then it was more climbing on Backpack Road, McCorkle Trail and Cave Rocks Road. We passed by the group camping area and got a little closer to some cows than we would have liked to. Then it was downhill from there back to the visitor center via Hayfield Road and Indian Joe Nature Trail. The tough loop was about 8 miles. It was a clear day and we got some great views but it did start to heat up near the end so we were glad we went out there early and took our hydration packs.

Sunol Regional Wilderness
EBRPD Trails Challenge 2013
Sunol Flag Hill Hike
Sunol Hike