Sacramento River Parkway Trail


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Sacramento River Parkway Trail Facts

States: California
Counties: Sacramento
Length: 9.3 miles
Trail end points: Tiscornia Park on Jibboom St and Bill Conlin Youth Sports Complex on Freeport Blvd
Trail surfaces: Asphalt, Concrete
Trail category: Rail-Trail
ID: 6357955

Sacramento River Parkway Trail Description

In the 19th century, thousands of Forty-Niners passed through Sacramento on their way to California’s gold fields. Today, visitors can explore those former haunts in the Old Sacramento Waterfront District from the Sacramento River Parkway Trail.

The 9.3-mile trail hugs the levees on the eastern bank of the Sacramento River as it rolls south from that river’s confluence with the American River. It links to both the  American River Bike Trail and the Two Rivers Trail in the north. After a 2-mile interruption through the Pocket neighborhood, it resumes for about 3 miles to its endpoint at a sports complex in the Freeport neighborhood.

Development of the trail began in the mid-1970s. It’s the northernmost segment of the Great California Delta Trail, which was envisioned as a corridor along the California Delta that will join the San Francisco Bay Trail system.

The paved trail starts at the base of the Jibboom Street bridge at Tiscornia Park, where the American River flows into the Sacramento. More parking and facilities are available across the bridge at Discovery Park.

Heading south for about a mile atop a levee built to protect Sacramento from flooding, you’ll arrive at the old railyards, once the largest in the west. The vintage rolling stock here indicates your arrival in Old Sacramento. Here, you’ll find the California State Railroad Museum, which houses many restored locomotives and cars, as well as a historic depot. Nearby, you can take a short excursion on the Sacramento Southern Railroad, a tourist train that once carried freight and passengers in the early 20th century.

The parkway’s river walk through Old Sacramento can get crowded with tourists hopping in and out of shops, restaurants, and bars. An alternative is Front Street, which is wider but paved with cobblestones and just as busy. The trail gets more manageable after you pass Capitol Mall/CA 275 at the iconic Tower Bridge.

South of the bridge, the trail is wedged between the excursion train tracks and the river. About 1.5 miles past the Tower Bridge, you’ll pass a marina and launch ramp in shady Miller Regional Park.

There are more parks along the trail for the next 4 miles to the community of Pocket, named for the semicircular bend in the river. Access to the levee is broken here, but plans are underway to upgrade the levee to a trail after property is acquired. Until that happens, take Clipper Way south to Riverside Boulevard, and turn right to continue on Riverside (it becomes Pocket Road) about 3.7 miles to Garcia Bend Park to rejoin the trail. You’ll reach the end of the trail in 3 miles at the Bill Conlin Sports Complex in Freeport.

Unless you’re familiar with the area, check the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers website before you go for possible levee closings due to construction.

Parking and Trail Access

Parking for the Sacramento River Parkway Trail is available at its northern end at Tiscornia Park (195 Jibboom St). (Note that a small entrance fee is charged here.) If you’re traveling on Jibboom St. from the north, you’ll turn left across from the trail to exit into the parking lot. If you are traveling from the south, you’ll turn right into the exit.

Additional parking can be found at Garcia Bend Park (7654 Pocket Rd, between Roberts River Way and Windbridge Dr), off Riverside Boulevard (between Rio Viale Ct and 35th Ave), off Captains Table Road (1000 Captains Table Rd, 0.2 mile north of Riverside Blvd), at Miller Regional Park (2706 Ramp Way), at Robert T Matsui Waterfront Park (Jibboom St., 0.2 mile north of Railyards Blvd), and at Bill Conlin Youth Sports Complex (7895 Freeport Blvd). 

Old Sacramento has several parking garages and metered parking on-street. On-street, metered parking can be found on Front Street between L Street and J Street.

Visit the TrailLink map for all options, available transit lines, and detailed directions. 

Sacramento River Parkway Trail Reviews

Electric skateboard

Not bad

This trail is still closed in October 2021

The short portion below the museum of Science and curiosity was nice and then the short portion through Old Town was also fun. The rest was navigating through one run down neighborhood after another.

Bike path opening back up

Bike path is opening back up by the end of the year. Was previously closed due to levee upgrades

scooter riders need to check this out

This trail is perfect for those who are scooter riders. This trail is smooth, long and a few curves and little hills here and there. There are hardly any pedestrians or bike riders. My husband and I recently bought scooters and have been looking for somewhere we can get some speed and just cruise without all the traffic. Not the most scenic. You can jump off the trail in spots and take a break.


Great Trail, closed until November 2020

Awesome trail but it’s closed for levee construction until November 2020

Great trail for the train lover

This trail is a very easy ride and drops right into the parkway trail systems. I highly recommend parking by Scotts Seafood as there is a nice public parking lot and it really is the start of the trail from the south end. Any further south and you end up riding through nieghborhoods and on the street rather than on the trail. The trail itself is well marked and follows the river the bulk of the way. There is also a lightly used rail track on the side and if you are lucky you will get to see the sacramento railway taking a lea sure stroll. Best part of the trail is dropping into old town sac where you can quickly get to downtown or the parkway for all the more riding. Nice little sunday stroll.

Great running trail!

If you are in the Sacramento area, then this is a great trail to run. It starts near Tiscornia Park but it may be easier to start at Discovery Park (which is right across the river) where there is plenty of parking. Both Park's have bathrooms and water fountains. Discovery Park looked nicer and cleaner.

The trail is paved and fairly level. There is a nice dirt/gravel shoulder that you can run on too so you don't have to stay on the paved portions. Lots of great views of the river, well shaded, many blackberry bushes along the way, and lots of small wildlife. The trail is officially open from sunrise to sunset.

Happy running!
Bob Osmond

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