and walking are by far the most popular activities in the Regional Parks. With
more than 140 miles of trails leading to beaches, mountains, forests, meadows
and lakes, it's easy to discover why Sonoma County is so special. We have
trails for all types of adventurers, from paved paths for easy walks to
wilderness trails for more strenuous treks.
calendar lists all of our upcoming guided hikes. To hike on your own,
visit our Find
a Park page and search for parks with trails, then go to the individual
park pages to view or print trail maps.
Remember, dogs on leash are
allowed on all trails except those in Shiloh Ranch Regional Park.
A few of our favorite easy trails are in Sonoma Valley,
Crane Creek, Riverfront, Spring Lake and
parks as well as our new Laguna
de Santa Rosa Trail. We consider easy trails to be under 3 miles and
relatively flat, with plenty of room to walk side by side with a companion.
These trails are good for people starting a fitness routine, families with
children or anyone interested in a not-too-strenuous outing.
For hikes requiring more effort, we like Taylor
Lake and Shiloh
regional parks and the Pinnacle
Gulch trails. We consider moderate-level trails to be 3 to 5 miles long
with uneven surfaces, varied terrain and elevation gains. Many moderate-level
hikes can be created by walking several shorter looped trails within a park.
Mountain Regional Park features our most challenging trails. The park's
trail system totals 19 miles and includes an elevation gain of more than 1,000
feet. The payoff is a jaw-dropping view of Sonoma Valley. Shiloh Ranch also
offers challenging hikes in its trail loops, and the climb to the top of Taylor
Mountain is a fairly strenuous endeavor. Challenging trails are those that
are 5 miles or longer or feature steep climbs or rugged terrain. These hikes
are for experienced hikers in good physical condition.
Sonoma County parks are covered with colorful blooms each spring, and our annual wildflower walks are a wonderful opportunity to learn more about these beautiful displays. The walks are scheduled for Saturdays from March 22 through May 3. The walks are free and led by Regional Parks volunteer Phil Dean, a Master Gardener who will identify wild plants, discuss the impact of the drought on this year's flower displays, and share stories specific to the vegetation in each park. All walks start at 10 a.m., last about two hours, and have an easy pace. The exception is the Hood Mountain hike, which starts at 8 a.m., ends about 1 p.m., and is a strenuous outing.
Park rangers, naturalists and partners lead guided hikes throughout the
year. Join history hikes, nature walks and other themed outings. Visit
calendar for more details about upcoming hikes:
Tolay Lake Hikes
Rangers at Tolay
Lake Regional Park lead regular hikes through this special park in the
hills east of Petaluma. Tolay is rich in cultural resources, having been
inhabited by American Indians, California pioneers, immigrant farmers and
present-day ranchers. As we develop a master plan for this park, public
access is limited to these guided hikes or to those who attend a free
one-hour orientation at the park and obtain a use permit.