TrailfinderYour Guide to Bay Area Parks & Trails

Back to Main Map

 

Trailfinder sponsored by

 

Mount Wanda with John Muir

 

Trail

 

Trailheads

by Transit & Trails

Park

Wildlife Sightings

by iNaturalist

 

Length: 2.31 miles
Difficulty: Moderate
Duration: Halfday
 
 
Ann Sieck
Created by Ann Sieck

Ann Sieck wants to make sure people with disabilities, including those who use wheelchairs, can find parks and trails they can enjoy.

Park: 37.98241875 -122.13250299 park Mount Wanda

Good for:
  • Wildflowers
Habitat:
  • Forests and Woodlands
  • Grasslands
Attributes:
  • Bike Friendly

Overview

Hike originally published in the April 2008 issue of Bay Nature magazine

The John Muir National Historic Site is a fascinating window on "John-of-the-Mountains" as father and farmer. His love of nature never flagged during his years caring for fruit orchards in Martinez, and as we climb Mount Wanda, a grassy oak-cloaked knob south of his farmhouse, we think of him, exiled from his beloved Sierra, savoring the wildness to be found in this less-rugged terrain.

Muir wrote of "a fine fragrant walk" with his daughters up this hill, and once away from the trailhead's traffic noise, it's easy to imagine the little girls (including Wanda, for whom the hill was named) and their bearded father trudging beside us on the steep ascent, noticing deciduous oaks leafing out; snowberries in dappled shade; bluedicks and Chinese houses in the grass; buttercups everywhere. A single-track, hikers-only nature trail skirts the hillside and rejoins the fire road to create a 1.5-mile loop back to the 642-foot summit, where the view includes Mount Diablo, the Carquinez Strait, and much of the development that has replaced Muir's fruit trees. Would that intrepid walker even attempt the stroll from his house to Mount Wanda today, across Highway 4's busy access ramps?

Getting there: Take the Alhambra exit from Highway 4 in Martinez; turn south and immediately right into the Park and Ride lot. Open sunrise to sunset; no fee; no facilities. A nature trail guide is available at the Muir historic site three blocks north on Alhambra (10 a.m.–5 p.m. Wed.–Sun., $5 admission).

 

powered by Flickr

Get Involved: Become a trailblazer, Review this Park, Log Wildlife Sightings, and Submit Photos.

Leave a Comment

Name

Email

Website

Comment

 
Get 20% off a 1, 2, or 3-year subscription to Bay Nature magazine!