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Valle Vista to Redwood Regional Park, CA

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Rated  Favorite Wish List CA > Bay Area
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Difficulty 3 of 5
Route Finding 1 of 5
Distance Lasso-Loop 7.8 miles
Trailhead Elevation 541 feet
Elevation Gain 1,017 feet
Accumulated Gain 1,586 feet
Avg Time Round Trip 4 Hours
Kokopelli Seeds 15.73
Interest Seasonal Creek & Perennial Creek
Backpack No
feature photo
Photos Viewed All Mine Following
Collective Slideshow
7  2012-05-12 JimmyLyding
10  2012-05-05 JimmyLyding
Historical Weather
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Preferred   Apr, May, Nov, Mar → 5 AM
Seasons   Spring to Autumn
Sun  7:15am - 4:50pm
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Official Route
 
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Water
Nearby Area Water
Kings Canyon Loop
0.0 mi away
6.5 mi
1,118 ft
Redwood Regional Park
Redwood Regional Park
1.2 mi away
7.7 mi
500 ft
West Ridge to East Ridge Trails
2.7 mi away
8.4 mi
1,300 ft
West Ridge Loop Trail
2.7 mi away
3.7 mi
85 ft
Goldenrod Trail to Grass Valley
3.2 mi away
6.2 mi
900 ft
Huckleberry Botanic Regional Preserve
Huckleberry Botanic Regional Preserve
3.7 mi away
6.0 mi
1,300 ft
Round Top Trail Loop
3.8 mi away
2.0 mi
450 ft
Round Top Volcanic Trail
4.4 mi away
2.0 mi
250 ft
Robert Sibley Volcanic Regional Preserve
Robert Sibley Volcanic Regional Preserve
4.4 mi away
4.5 mi
1,000 ft
Eagle Peak and Las Trampas Ridge
4.8 mi away
9.6 mi
2,100 ft
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Fauna Nearby
Flora Nearby
Moraga to Redwoods
by JimmyLyding

Note that parking at Valle Vista and hiking on the trails that begin there require an EBMUD permit. This hike starts at the Valle Vista trailhead just southwest of the San Francisco Bay area bedroom community of Moraga and ends up in the deep forest of Redwood Regional Park. It's a lot more strenuous than it looks on the map, but not too difficult.


The trailhead has a place to sign in with your EBMUD permit, and go right from there. The route here is a fire road that initially heads uphill at a moderate pace for 200 yards before going up a short lung-burner. The trail then contours along a ridge through a nice forest of bay, fern and live oak. You give up most of that elevation gain when the trail switchbacks down to the intersections of Pinehurst and Canyon Roads.

The first redwoods appear towards the bottom of the first stretch where the trail crosses San Leandro Creek. Continue west across Pinehurst and pass through the signed trailhead to the west. The trails to this point have not been named, and that's unusual for the Bay Area. They're marked with generic EBMUD (East Bay Municipal Utility District) signs at trailheads, and maps are not available.

The trail crosses a little bridge before switchbacking straight uphill through a second-growth redwood forest. There are surprisingly a lot of redwoods here. The trail alternately is steep and flat as it heads up towards the East Ridge trail in Redwood Regional Park. The dense redwoods, bay trees, and live oaks keep the area shady, and you reach the East Ridge trail 1.5 miles from Valle Vista.

Reaching the East Ridge trail presents numerous opportunities. You can go left (south) to reach the main staging area, go right to reach the Skyline staging area or head down into the Redwood Creek drainage for a more adventurous hike.

My initial hike here took me from the trailhead to East Ridge trail then to the Skyline staging area, and back.

JimmyLyding
    WARNING! Hiking and outdoor related sports can be dangerous. Be responsible and prepare for the trip. Study the area you are entering and plan accordingly. Dress for the current and unexpected weather changes. Take plenty of water. Never go alone. Make an itinerary with your plan(s), route(s), destination(s) and expected return time. Give your itinerary to trusted family and/or friends.

    Permit $$
    EBMUD Trail Use Permit -The pass costs $10 for 1 year or $20 for 3 years, and allows you to hike the many fine recreation areas that EBMUD manages. A pass-holder can take along up to 4 people. You must sign in at the beginning of the hike with your pass number and license plate number.


    Directions
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    Road
    Paved - Car Okay

    To hike
    Take Moraga WAY from Hwy 24 (Orinda exit) left/south from the freeway about 3.5 miles to "downtown" Moraga, and go right (west) on Canyon Rd. just past the golf course. Go about a mile to the Valle Vista staging area on the left.
    page created by JimmyLyding on May 05 2012 8:43 pm
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