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Sweeping rural vistas abound along this rail-trail. The West County Regional Trail is built along the corridor of the old Petaluma and Santa Rosa Railway, which carried passengers between Santa Rosa, Petaluma and Sebastopol until it was abandoned in 1984. The rail-trail system was designated as a Community Millennium Trail by then-First Lady Hillary Clinton and the White House Millennium Council, in partnership with the U.S. Department of Transportation and Rails-to-Trails Conservancy.
At its southern endpoint in Sebastopol, the trail seamlessly connects to the Joe Rodota Trail. Heading north along CA 116/Gravenstein Highway North, the West County Regional Trail passes lush vineyards and farmland. (Take the Joe Rodota Trail southeast if you want to reach downtown Sebastopol or Santa Rosa instead.)
After 1 mile, turn left onto Occidental Road, and go just under another mile until you see the resumption of the off-road trail on your right. Turn onto the trail and continue north 0.7 mile. Turn right onto Grey Street in Graton, then take an immediate left onto Bowen Street. Head 0.2 mile on Bowen Street (note that there are no bike lanes for this stretch). Turn left onto Graton Road, then take an immediate right at the trail directional sign. Continue north on the trail 0.6 mile. Turn left onto Green Valley Road and use the shoulder for about a quarter mile before turning right at the trail directional sign.
The paved trail will lead you to an elevated wooden boardwalk. The section from Green Valley Road north for about a half mile is compacted gravel and passes a wastewater treatment plant, but the rest of this last section of the trail passes through beautiful vineyards, picturesque farmland, and orchards.
Roughly 2.2 miles from the resumption of the paved trail at Green Valley Road is a sign for Pajaro Lane in Forestville. Remain on the trail, which crosses another elevated wooden boardwalk and brings you to the small town of Forestville, where you can find picnic tables, an unpaved parking lot, and Forestville’s commercial core on CA 116/Front Street.
Note that while horseback riding is permitted for the entirety of the trail, there is no equestrian parking available in the designated trail parking lots.
Parking is available on Ross Station Road, on Graton Road, and on Front Street.
Visit the TrailLink map for all options and detailed directions.
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