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The Santa Rosa Creek Trail follows the meandering course of Santa Rosa Creek, beginning in downtown Santa Rosa and heading west beyond Willowside Road. From end to end, the trail is only a few miles long, but you can more than double that by traveling on the spur trails and along both sides of the creek.
The trail follows a wooded corridor that is home to many bird species and other wildlife. It branches north just west of Fulton Road, forking again with both forks heading to Marlow Road. Back on the main route, the trail branches north again between two cultivated fields, crossing Guerneville Road and turning east to Fulton Road.
The Santa Rosa Creek Trail is paved on its north side between downtown and Willowside Road, but has a gravel surface beyond Willowside Road. The trail on the south side of the creek has a gravel surface exclusively.
At its eastern end at Pierson Street, the trail meets the Prince Memorial Greenway, which continues seamlessly to downtown Santa Rosa and a junction with the Joe Rodota Trail. Access to the latter is between Olive and 3rd Streets via a bicycle/pedestrian bridge alongside the train tracks.
To access the Santa Rosa Creek Trail, take US 101 to the 3rd Street exit and head southwest. Turn right on Pierson Street. The trail can be found on either side of the creek near the road's end. Note that parking is unavailable here.
I loved this trail! The main trail is all paved. It has underpasses under the cross streets to allow you to keep rolling without risk of cross traffic entanglement. The scenery is fantastic, at least in the spring time when we rode it. There is lots of trees that can provide shade if it's a hot sunny day. There is lots of birds that sing as you ride. It's truly a wonderful ride. Once you get part way outbound, there is a field on the right side of the paved trail, providing variety of shade trees on the left and green fields on the right. There wasn't that many other riders or pedestrians. Be sure to gently alert the walkers as you approach them from behind so as not to startle them and let them know you are approaching.
All of the north side of the Santa Rosa creek trail is paved. However, the side branch that "Y"s off to the NE along the Piner creek is gravel on both side, but it's not a problem to ride unless you don't like gravel and the rougher ride that comes with it. There are two wide blvd crossings on that route so be careful there. The south side of the Santa Rosa creek is also gravel (I think, but I didn't actually ride it to confirm.)
Super smooth , road underpasses so no stopping for traffic, not very crowded, peace in an urban setting
Well kept wild nature
a very nice, clean, well-maintained trail, meandering along the creek and alongside vineyards. a few homeless people. all in all, a very enjoyable ride!
Great trail if you start away from downtown.Sadly there are lots of homeless people and young less than desirable youth along the creek.
This is a great trail however it is NOT safe to be on it alone. There have been lots of gang related attacks and there is a high probablility that you will run into at least one group of pot smokers. So don't miss out on it, but go with a group or a dog or carry pepper spray.
A lot of money and effort went into creating what could be a beautiful trail along Santa Rosa Creek. And the trail IS beautiful once you get away from the downtown area. From downtown to about Stony Point road the trail has become a homeless encampment. Tents are set up along the creek side. Clothes, shopping carts, sleeping bags, fast food containers, broken glass and sleeping people are all too numerous. The powers that be have installed cyclone fences under the bridges in order to discourage sleeping there, but these have been cut and the sleeping and defecating go on.
So, until someone decides to that they can do something about this problem, if you want a clean, natural hike, begin west of Stony Point road.
On our first visit to SR we walked this trail from the Hyatt hotel to downtown, about a mile, really nice to be able to walk to restaurants, etc. Using TrailLink I saw that the trail headed out 6 miles the other direction!
This time we took our bikes and were so glad we did. A really great experience and easy. Paved on north side, compacted/gravel on the other. Did not take either of the arms off of the trail but they looked to be dirt.
We made a loop by going off the trail onto Fulton (very busy), heading north about a mile (just past the major intersection at hwy 12)and connecting with the Joe Rodota trail that took us back to the creek trail right near the Hyatt. This part of the Jo Rodota trail was much less scenic, through an industrial, kinda trashy part of town. Nice to be safely off of the road, though!
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