Date: April 21, 2012
We’ve been looking for a way to find some hiking companions (it’s no fun always going just two of us and Lily). Of course, the solution was quickly found on good old interwebs – meetup.com. The meetup group we really liked (“Wag-n-Trails”), was all about hiking with dogs. We weren’t sure what to expect, but we eager to try it out and see what happens. The plan for the day was to hike in Briones Regional Park, one of the super dog friendly parks of the East Bay Regional Park system (dogs allowed off-leash!) When we got to the parking lot, we were amazed at the size of the group that gathered there. There must have been 15 different people, all of them along with a friendly furry companion. We started on the trail right on time (pretty amazing for such a large gathering!), and headed into the park.
Briones Regional Park
The trail that we took headed straight into the hills, immediately offering some fantastic views. The scenery was pretty typical for an East Bay Park: rolling hills, lonely oak trees growing on the hills-sides, and, of course, typical for the spring time, lots of beautiful wild flowers.
The day was very hot, and the initial uphill section of the trail was quite steep. Soon, all the dogs were panting from the heat with their tongues out. Fortunately, we came across a couple of small ponds where the dogs could cool down and play. I hadn’t seen so much splashing in quite some time!
After passing the ponds, we turned onto a narrow trail which would lead us to Briones Peak. Our group was taking up the whole trail, with two-lane traffic of humans on the right side, trudging along slowly, and the constantly moving, running, going back-and-forth line of dogs on the left side. Soon, we reached the Briones Peak – not too great of an accomplishment, since the “peak” turned out to be more of a small hill (mere 1483 feet elevation). However, the views were still very nice, so we had a mandatory “We’re on top!” picture taken.
The rest of the hike was along the west edge of the park, with more beautiful flowers, and also some great views of the prominent double summit of Mt. Diablo.
However, despite the great views and wonderful scenery, the best part of the day was meeting a whole bunch of wonderful people and amazing dogs. We would definitely be back for more!