A hidden gem! The trail head was very unassuming as there was some graffiti, but once you go back the trail it is very beautiful. The trail goes up the hill along a creek and within moments you feel as though you are deep in the woods. It rained the day before, so the trail was wet and the creek was flowing strong. There were some fallen trees that I had to climb over/under. It was a little treacherous from the rain and slippery at parts and I actually wiped out climbing on one of the downed trees. There is a spot where you will need to cross the creek via a board and some rocks. It wasn't obvious to me at first and I went to the left and up the hill on another path.
After crossing the creek, you will continue hiking alongside it for about another 1/4 mile until you intersect another wider path. This takes you to the top of the hill. Near the top, there was a lot of water from the rain that blocked the main path, but there was another way around. The top of the hill offers great views of the entire east bay and peninsula.
Overall, this trail was a lot of fun. What it didn't offer in distance it made up for in adventure. I would rate it moderate as there is a significant climb to the top and the path is very narrow at parts. One wrong step could make for a bad day.
Something noteworthy is that Leona Heights Park is operated by the city of Oakland and not by the East Bay Regional Park District.
Nice hike with some good views. The climb up from the parking lot was rather muddy as it had just rained the day before and that area doesn't get any sun. But once I crested the hill, the path was dry and opened up to some nice views. There are a few benches along the trail if you want to take a break and enjoy the scenery. I encountered a lot of dogs off leash. Some owners had their dogs under control, some not so much.
Nice hike that doesn't get a lot of use. Situated near horse boarding facilities so it probably gets as much horse and bike activity as hikers. Good connector between Redwood and Chabot. I've made it a day hike starting in upper Redwood and going to the bottom of Chabot.
Really nice trail. Very kid-friendly. The slope is generally nice and easy and there's lots of shade.
One thing to note: this trail does not require dogs to be on-leash. 50' in to the trailhead if you're starting from the apartment complex end, there's a sign that clear says it's a dogs-off-leash trail and then it has some rules about dogs needing to reply to voice commands.
Not a huge deal, but wanted to put that out there.
1. Parked at Bort Meadow Staging Area, walked down toward the camp grounds and turning left onto the Grass Valley trail. 2. Took a right to cross the Stone Bridge, and right again to head back, now on the Goldenrod trail.
3. Right onto Ranch trail which later becomes Grass Valley trail and completes the loop.
6.5 miles, 2:45 at a leisurely pace. Not much of a challenge. Mild inclined to get the blood flowing, horse dung to keep you on your toes. Beautiful eucalyptus tree groves along the way. Equestrians, dog walkers, bikers, and hikers, pretty cool! Great one for the whole family. It did get dusty and hot around 11am (in August).
Enjoyable trek through eucalyptus forests, grassland, and some nice views. If you take the Buckeye trail to connect Goldenrod & Grass Valley, you'll follow a nice little stream lined by lots of ferns, moss & green foliage. Depending on the time of year you'll have to deal with mud, ice, dust, and/or horse & cattle manure on the trail. Goldenrod is right next to Skyline Blvd so you'll hear and see cars. Lots of unleashed dogs on this trail under varying degrees of voice control.
Leona trail is a steep decline to the basin of Leona Canyon, where it meets with Artemisia trail. The Artemisia trail is much more gentle and has direct access from a parking lot near an apartment complex. Leona trail has no trail marker at the ridge of the canyon. Me and my friends happened to spot the trail head while driving around the neighborhood off of Skyline Rd. Good hike with interesting foliage, but LOTS OF POISON OAK!
Allyson R. on Leona Canyon Trail
I parked for free in the lot next to the apartments and started my hike from there. It was a short and mostly shady trail that was good for my dog and me. We took the Artemisia trail to the top for a steeper incline and enjoyed the view while we rested. Although dogs are allowed off-leash watch out for poison oak on both sides of the trail.
This review is for Artemisia Trail to Leona Canyon Trail - a steep out and back that is approximately 1.2 miles, tucked away in a suburb just off of Skyline Boulevard. Artemisia Trail is part of the Leona Canyon Open Preserve network of trails, which also includes Leona Canyon Trail running the length of the entire canyon, and Pyrite Trail, a tributary trail like Artemisia with steeps descents/ascents from the canyon's ridge.
From a small entrance off Lexford Place, Artemisia follows a semi-rocky descent through enchanting shaded-groves. Even at just over a mile, Artemisia Trail gets steep quickly, and in turn, makes for a helluva trek back up - ideal for some effective after-work exercise. Not necessarily for beginners however, so come prepared with proper shoes and plenty of water. A true hidden gem right in Oakland's back-yard!
This trail was an easy, family-friendly trail. The trail runs along a creek that my dog and kids enjoyed exploring. There is lots of shady spots and some benches along the way. We started at the apartment side where the parking is free. The only difficult part was the uphill climb as you get close to the Meritt college side. There is no water or restroom facilities along the way. Dogs are allowed off-leash.