First visit to the new park

Trail View
A typical trail view at Tolay Lake - a tractor trail, lots of grassland and very few trees.
User: Austin Explorer - 3/17/2019

Location: Tolay Lake Regional Park

Rating: 4stars
Difficulty: 3stars  Solitude: 3stars
Miles Hiked: 8.39 Miles  Elapsed Time: 4 hours, 14 minutes


Coppertone and I made our first visit to the new park after a slight dry spell hinted that we might not have to deal with too much mud.  Our chief aim was to go directly to the Bay View Vista at the end of the Wsest Ridge Trail.  With over 8 miles put in we managed to do that.

The park is wide open, with very little tree cover anywhere.  That means sunscreen should be your word for the day.  You will be exposed to the Sun.  Expect it and prepare for it and you'll be fine.

From the top of the ridges that mark most of the parks boundaries one can see almost all of the park from almost every point.  Other hikers might be a mile or more away but if you look carefully, you can see them.  Does that inhibit a hike's solitude?  Not necessarily.

We did encounter a few spots of muddy terrain that required a short detour around the tractor trails that make up the park's paths.  Some of the larger puddles of water served the cows as watering holes just fine.  Yes, there are cows everywhere and they are not separated from visitors by a fence.  At one point we joked that we were being followed by a rather noisy cow but she was just headed towards a puddle she knew about for a quick drink.

Watch out for cow patties on the trail.  Seriously.

The views from Bay View Vista and Petaluma Marsh Vista are grand.  The one downside of Bay View Vista is the loud noises coming from Sonoma Raceway from the speeding cars.

Log Photos
Trail View
Farm Buildings
Petaluma Marsh Vista
Rolling Hills
Headed back
Cougar Mountain and Mount Diablo
San Francisco and Mount Tam
Headed back
We're being followed
Shade, at last
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