Our mission is to promote, maintain, and enhance Oakland's wildland parks and trails.
March 15, 2016

We're coming up on a busy and exciting month for TRAILHEAD. The 20-minute documentary will be screened at two film festivals, the Albany FilmFest and the San Francisco Green Film Festival, while continuing to play at community events in Oakland, San Leandro, and Berkeley (details on our homepage). Also, by popular demand, we plan to release the film online on April 18, giving the world free access to the beauty found in Oakland's wildland parks. Stay tuned for more details as we get closer to the release event.

The recent storms have also been exciting. The creeks are full (scroll down to see my favorite spots for viewing waterfalls), but also many trees have fallen, keeping park stewards busy. After clearing 26 trees off trails in all of 2015, we've already cleared 20 trees in 2016. You can help us keep track of fallen trees and other park maintenance issues by reporting what you see on the SeeClickFix smart phone app. This app notifies Public Works AND active volunteers so we can work together, keeping the trail system open and safe.

DVDs of TRAILHEAD are still available for purchase at select retailers, and continue to fund park improvement projects. We've installed mosaic trail markers in Dimond Canyon Park, purchased new tools for trail maintenance, and will provide all the needed funding for Oakland Volunteer Park Patrol. And now, you can help us provide TWO free copies of the film to Oakland Libraries and Recreation Centers by donating $12 HERE.

Year-to-date, we've logged more than 160 volunteer hours in (and for) Oakland's wildland parks. Thank you for your continued support!

See you on the trails,

Stan Dodson
Executive Director, Volunteer
Screenings of TRAILHEAD
For the current list of screenings, click HERE
FREE Hiking Tours 
Want to join us on a hiking tour? Click HERE for more information.  
Creeks and Waterfalls in Joaquin Miller Park

With the time change and a break in rain, we have a great chance to experience rushing creeks and cascading waterfalls in our wildland parks. Here's a list of my favorite spots in Joaquin Miller Park:

Palos Colorados Trail - Palo Seco Creek runs the length of lower Palos Colorados Trail. It's a year-round creek, but with any rain it swells quickly, funneling all the smaller creeks in Joaquin Miller Park before joining Sausal Creek. The site and sound of water rushing through this deep, wooded canyon makes for a unique and awesome Oakland experience. The middle section, as pointed to on the map above, offers the best view of waterfalls. *The bridge at the bottom near the Joaquin Miller Ct. trailhead is in disrepair, so with this much water in the system, I recommend entering the trail from the top off Sinawik Trail. **Sections of this trail are steep and narrow, and can be slippery in all conditions. Only experienced hikers should use this trail.

Fern Ravine Trail - Whether you make your way up from Sunset Loop Trail, or reach the top via Sequoia-Bayview Trail, you'll get a great view of a long, cascading waterfall from the upper third of this trail section. *This trail is steep and narrow, and requires intermediate to advanced hiking skills.

Cinderella Creek from Sunset Trail - This creek is easily viewed from Sunset Trail, a wide and relatively flat trail that traverses the mid section of the park. Once you reach the creek intersection, a few steps up along the wide banks will treat you to a natural section of creek under a wooded canopy.

Sinawik Trail - This is an easy to moderate hiking trail that bends through mixed redwood forest along Palo Seco Creek. You'll get closest to rushing water while using this trail.

To learn more about the Sausal Creek Watershed, please visit our friends at

Oakland Momma Explores Dimond Canyon Park

A few weeks ago, I was contacted by Adrienne Schell, who had a few questions about Dimond Canyon Park for her Oakland Momma blog. I offered a thoughtful response, but little did I know she would write such a touching, compelling, and accurate(!) piece about the opportunities and challenges we find in Dimond Canyon Park. Please read her story HERE.


New Steps to be Installed on Palos Colorados Trail is gearing up to replace and install nearly 30 new steps on the Palos Colorados Trail. Following guidelines set forth by the City of Oakland to protect creeks and waterways, we will not use wood treated by chemicals. Pure redwood timbers will be installed in the trail.

Buy a step today! Help us fund this project with a tax deductible contribution. All funds are processed through our 501c3 fiscal sponsor, the Oakland Parks & Recreaton Foundation.

Oakland Volunteer Park Patrol (OVPP)

We're in the final stages of making OVPP a reality. To learn more about this exciting new volunteer program, visit



Rain in January + Heat in February = California Poppies along the Sunset Trail

Dimond Park

During a storm last week, a large Monterey Pine slid down the hill and landed on the Sequoia-Bayview Trail.
We have plans to clear it on Thursday.

We'd like to thank our fiscal sponsor, the Oakland Parks & Recreation Foundation. 
Donations to are tax deductible to the fullest extent allowed by law.
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