Rush Creek Open Space (Easy - Moderate); ~7 miles, mostly flat

  • November 2, 2012 · 9:30 AM
  • This location is shown only to members

We won't be taking a break on this hike so we can back and have the afternoon to do other things.  If you need refueling, bring something you can eat on the move.

Not much elevation gain here (approximately 300'), so a change of pace from many of our more vertical hikes.

The hike starts on a fire road skirting the edge of a marsh. The initial stretch of trail is partially shaded by California bay, coast live oak, buckeye, and black oak (note: poison oak thrives in this preserve; if you don't know what it looks like, I'll point it out if I see some). After a few minutes of walking north and east, traffic sounds from 101 become muted. The trail follows the contour of the marsh, and is almost completely level for quite a bit of it, making it an easy stroll. Be prepared - in the winter and spring, the fire road reportedly gets very muddy, with some standing water covering the trail at times. There is a mix of shady and sunny on this hike.

We are likely to see a variety of birds as we wander; everything from hawks and vultures to egrets and cranes, red-winged blackbirds, sandpipers, and various waterfowl. Deer are often sighted along these trails, as are coyote paw prints in the sand.

Petaluma car pool in the Lucky parking lot at the corner of Lakeville Rd and Caulfield Ln (park closest to Payran St). Meet at 9:00 am so we can leave promptly at 9:05 am.


Directions to the trail head:

- From US 101 exit San Marin Drive/Atherton Avenue in Novato.
- Go east on Atherton Avenue about 0.2 mile
- Take the first left onto Binford Road.
- Drive about 0.2 mile and park on either side of the road near the open space gate.

As always:

  • We combine enjoyment of the trail with respect for everyone’s time. Slow and steady and we just keep going!
  • Please always check your email the night before just in case there are any necessary adjustments.
  • Give yourself time to find the trail head so that you arrive prior to the scheduled time. That is the time we head out on the trail. It would be disappointing to miss having you on the hike due to late arrival.
  • Wear comfortable hiking shoes with good rugged soles that are well broken in.
  • Duration: 2.5 hours
  • Facilities: none
  • Dogs?: well behaved dogs on leash are welcome.
  • Bring plenty of water. More than one bottle is usually a good idea.
  • No break on this hike.


See you on the trail!




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  • Kathy

    Such a nice hike of contrasts - fog and sun. Nice, small compatible group. Welcome to the Wanderers, Louie!

    November 2, 2012

  • Stephanie B.

    Very enjoyable morning with wonderful company...and fog, sun, birds, and ducks floating by the smooth trails! Thank you Kathy!

    November 2, 2012

  • Marinoly R.

    So lovely, we got a bit of everything. Some fog, some sun, great company.

    November 2, 2012

  • Michelle K.

    moderately easy.

    November 2, 2012

  • A former member
    A former member

    Sorry Kathy, at last minute, can't make it! I so wanted to be there as this is one of my favorite walks! Next time.

    November 2, 2012

  • Michelle K.

    Is there a carpool from Petaluma?

    November 1, 2012

    • Kathy

      As stated in the text above: Petaluma car pool in the Lucky parking lot at the corner of Lakeville Rd and Caulfield Ln (park closest to Payran St). Meet at 9:00 am so we can leave promptly at 9:05 am.

      November 1, 2012

  • Brigitte D.

    Although I so much wanted to go, my physical therapist thought I should wait. Boohoo and Rats!!!

    November 1, 2012

    • Kathy

      WAH!!!!! We'll miss you, but this way when you do come back you'll really be ready.

      November 1, 2012

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