Napa Valley Vine Trail

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1star (1.00)
2stars (2.00)
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The northern half of our hike had more trees and was much more pleasant to be on. (Photo by Austin Explorer)
Rails, roads and rose?
A view from the trail looking east. The highway and railroad is a constant companion but now there are open views over vineyards and the mountains in the distance. (Photo by Austin Explorer)
Rails and trail
North of Redwood the trail is sandwiched between Solano and the rail line. Here you can see a car that sports an ad for the Wine Train. (Photo by Austin Explorer)
Oak Knoll Section
When the trail passes Redwood it transitions into the Oak Knoll Section with an nice sign to mark it. (Photo by Austin Explorer)
Neighborhood paths
The residential area's a bit nicer than the industrial stretch to the south, but there's no artwork here. (Photo by Austin Explorer)
Industrial area
The artwork helps alot. This is the typical scene between Vallejo and Lincoln. (Photo by Austin Explorer)
Hi there
We got a kick out of the painted dog looking out of a Dutch door. (Photo by Austin Explorer)
Movable artwork
An unused train car served as a canvas. (Photo by Austin Explorer)
Utility sheds
Even utility sheds received some artful touchups along the trail. (Photo by Austin Explorer)
Some of the murals could be quite whimsical and imaginative. (Photo by Austin Explorer)
Trail Train Mural
One of the many murals to be found along the Napa Valley Vine Trail just north of Vallejo. (Photo by Austin Explorer)
Downtown Napa
Downtown Napa and the Napa River as seen from the trail. Note the kayaks in the water. (Photo by Austin Explorer)

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Log Entries
Mapping north of Napa
By Austin Explorer on 3/21/2021
Rating: 2stars Difficulty: 1star Solitude: 2stars
Distance: 5.81 Miles Duration: 2 hours, 2 minutes

Coppertone and I started off where we left off last weekend on our Napa Valley Vine Trail mapping expedition.  We parked along the road and continued north.  Once again, the trail is straight as an arrow and during this hike always sandwiched between the railroad tracks and Solano Ave.  During this segment we actually left the City of Napa and so we enjoyed some more wide open views over vineyards into the mountains on either side of the trail.

The trail was more crowded today than a week ago, but thankfully the path is wide enough to give people plenty of space to pass, usually.  We don't fully understand how 80-90% of cyclists seem to think expiration couldn't possibly spread COVID-19 on to anyone else.  Special that way, I guess.

The northern half of this hike was the more enjoyable.  One is never unaware of the constant cacophony of cars from the highway, no matter where you are.  But the crowds were a bit thinner.  And at times there was suddenly a line of mature trees lining the trail.  It's not nearly enough to block the noise and visual pollution of the roadway but it made me a bit happier anyway.  I did note that there are a large number of younger trees planted further south along the trail.  Perhaps one day more of the path will be a bit more pleasant.

We turned around at a non-descript railroad crossing that's not attached to any street, but just north of Darms Lane.  We doubled back to our trailhead and called it day.

Mapping north segment of the Napa Valley Vine Trail
By Austin Explorer on 3/15/2021
Rating: 2stars Difficulty: 1star Solitude: 2stars
Distance: 5.43 Miles Duration: 1 hour, 55 minutes

Since it has just rained earlier in the weekend we wanted to avoid any trails that might end up in a muddy quagmire.  We had hiked another portion of this trail before and figured it was time to repay it a visit to what it was like elsewhere.  We parked on the street right off of Vallejo, very close to the spot where the trail picks up.

The trail north of the center of Napa is mostly straight as an arrow.  Just starting off from Vallejo the trail follows the rail right of way through the back of numerous businesses, some still in extistence and some not.  A few of the places seemed ideal for loading and offloading directly from railcars that used to pass through.

Yes, this is an industrial area and thus is far from scenic in a tradtional hiking sense.  Still, the first half mile plus from Vallejo is interesting due to a number of murals and art installations along the way.  They add a bit of color, literally and figuratively, to the hike and gives the visitors something to comment on along the way.

When the trail crosses Lincoln the area turns residential.  In this case that's unfortunate since it means an end to the art that had accompanied us this far.  One thing that does not change is the straight paved path.

When the trail nears Redwood it snakes away from the rail line for a moment and dumps the walker onto Solano Ave.  Once you cross Redwood on Solano the trail will once again abut the rails.  We're not sure why the trail couldn't follow the line more closely leading up to Redwood, but nearby fencing with "private property" signs seems to indicate a land dispute.

The trail then parallels both Solano Ave and the traintracks and continues to do so for some miles ahead.  With the clouds getting darker and rain visible in the distance we decided to turnaround at Trower Avenue and double back to our trailhead.

Easy path in downtown Napa
By Austin Explorer on 8/13/2016
Rating: 2stars Difficulty: 1star Solitude: 2stars
Distance: 4.84 Miles Duration: 1 hour, 34 minutes

Coppertone and I had a couple of stops for shopping and eating in Napa today and decided to get some a short walk in as well.  We parked at one of the downtown parking garages and planned on heading south on this trail until the heat started to prove a bit much.

The path follows the Napa River, which seemed to be filled with paddleboarders and kayakers.

Trail surface is flat, which makes for easy going for just about anyone.  On a hot day like today the paved surface meant higher temperatures.  Trees have been planted along part of the path, but it will take a while before they offer any comforting shade.

We turned around at Kennedy Park and doubled back.  As it turns out we were fairly close to the end of the trail though at the time we didn't know it.

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