Best trails in Doran Regional Park, California

80 Reviews
Explore the most popular trails in Doran Regional Park with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

The park is open 7am to sunset.

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Map of trails in Doran Regional Park, California
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Top trails (3)
#1 - Doran Beach Trail
Doran Regional Park
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Length: 3.9 mi • Est. 1 h 37 m
This is a beautiful walk along the beach with picturesque views of Bodega Harbor and the Bodega Head. As this trail is on loose sand, it is not considered wheelchair or stroller friendly, but the Doran Marsh Trail close by is: more
#2 - Bird Walk
Doran Regional Park
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Length: 2.1 mi • Est. 53 m
According to Access Northern California ( Bird Walk is a mile-long loop trail through a revitalized 14-acre saltwater marsh at the mouth of Cheney Creek, where it empties into Bodega Harbor. This is one of Sonoma County’s prime spots for birdwatching. Here and in the neighboring dune ponds, mudflats, freshwater marshes, and grasslands, you may see snowy egrets, northern harriers, northern pintails, and marbled godwits - to name just a few. The trail runs atop a levee circling two dredge disposal ponds that were built in 1980 to hold silt from the dredging of Bodega Bay. The vegetation along the levee has been restored to improve bird and wildlife habitat. Bird Walk can connect to Doran Marsh Trail for an additional 0.8-mile hike. Accessibility: There is designated, van-accessible parking off of Highway 1. Two paths lead from the parking lot to the loop trail, which sits some 25 feet above the lot on top of a levee. The first is very steep. The second, a switchbacked asphalt ramp a few feet beyond, is the easier option. The trail surfaces are dirt and they are typically at least four feet wide. The max grade is 4%. Arriving atop the levee, you are greeted by a massive, grass-covered rock rising from the marsh. If you choose to circle clockwise around the loop, you'll first pass a pumping station on your left—down a hill and set back from the trail it's unobtrusive, and you'll likely be more focused on the vistas of Doran Park Marsh and Bodega Bay to the west. Within a few hundred feet you come to two spur trails, one travels down a gentle slope to a bridge that crosses Cheney Creek, where you can connect to the Doran Marsh Trail and extend your trip another 0.4 miles each way. The other, a hard-packed dirt trail that bisects the loop, is overgrown with grasses and quite bumpy for wheelchair users and doesn’t have the best views. There are accessible restrooms and an accessible picnic table by the parking lot.Show more
#3 - Doran Marsh Trail
Doran Regional Park
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Length: 0.9 mi • Est. 22 m
According to Access Northern California ( Doran Regional Park in Bodega Bay is situated on a broad, sandy 120-acre spit that forms the northern border of the bay and the southern border of Bodega Harbor. On summer weekends, inland residents flock here seeking the cooler temperatures typically found along this part of the coast. The park has a campground for both trailers and tents (the accessible campsites have electricity), a boat launch, and picnic tables. The calm waters off this two-mile-long stretch of beach are the best in Sonoma County for swimming, and a concrete ramp provides good access to the beach when using a beach wheelchair. A short boardwalk with platforms overlooking the beach is off the main day-use lot. Be sure to stop at the marble sculpture "Whale Ballet," by Warren Arnold. From the picnic tables at the end of the park road you can watch people fishing from the rocky jetty at the spit’s end, or just enjoy the bay views and, on a clear day, perhaps spot Tomales Point in the distance. Cheney Creek provides habitat for federally threatened Central Coast steelhead and is a critical nursery area for several fish species, including the three-spined stickleback and prickly sculpin. Coyote brush, coast morning glory, yarrow, and yellow lupine are the dominant plants. On my summertime visit, mustard and gum plant, both yellow, brightened up an otherwise gray day. Birds you might see include egrets, western grebes, and American avocets. Accessibility: There is firm, designated handicapped van accessible parking with a slope no greater than 2% at the Cypress, day-use, and jetty lots. The dirt and gravel lot across from Doran Marsh Trail has no striping. The trail surface is dirt/gravel and it is typically at least four feet wide. It is flat with an average grade of 1% and a max grade of 3%. The Doran Marsh Trail runs on a levee along Cheney Creek, then crosses the creek on an accessible bridge and climbs a gentle hill to its crest, where you can connect to the accessible Bird Walk loop. There is a moderate uphill to reach Bird Walk after crossing the creek. Large-sized gravel in places makes for a bumpy ride. Might be muddy in wet weather. There are accessible restrooms at the jetty and day-use parking lots. The campground has unisex stalls that are open to the public. A beach wheelchair is available for loan from camp hosts at site 59. If a camp host is not available, ask at the entrance kiosk. There are accessible picnic tables on concrete pads with raised barbecue grills at the jetty day-use parking lot.Show more