This year is also the 20th Anniversary of the East Bay Hills Benefit, a hiking or horse back riding overnight adventure that takes participants through many of the great East Bay trails. It is also a fundraiser for V-O-Cal and other related groups. This event will be held August 31 - Sept 5. Because volunteers like you have helped provide a quality experience for our riders and hikers, we have been able to raise over $360,000 over the past 20 years to support trail building and volunteer trail work programs like V-O-Cal.
We are headed back to San Francisco on July 9! This project will be limited to 50 participants, so be sure to sign up early.
We will make much needed improvements to the existing Sanborn Trail. The work will involve building steps and small retaining walls using rocks sourced on site, making minor reroutes to the trail alignment, widening the tread where needed, and obliterating a well-established social trail.
The Painted Rock property is special. Its name derives from large rocks overlooking Moraga that have been happily painted for decades by local students. Its significance for trails, however, is new! When the John Muir Land Trust began a campaign to acquire this property from its private owner, JMLT was overwhelmed by hundreds (literally!) of donations from the local community. Now permanently preserved as open space, Painted Rock will open 505 acres of beautiful hill and valleys for public enjoyment. The property will also provide connectivity to trails reaching into more than 15,000 acres of pristine protected land.
Napa County has always been a great venue for V-O-Cal projects, and we are delighted to start our restart in Napa at Moore Creek. We will be extending our previous work by building a new section of the Madrone Trail. Technical challenges and a beautiful wood are features of this project. Mark your calendars for April 15-17 to be a part of this first post-COVID project.
Lake Merced is owned by the SF Public Utilities Commission (PUC) but the recreation areas are managed by SF Recreation & Park. We have been given the unique opportunity to camp on PUC property right off the lake. V-O-Cal volunteers will be helping to repair and restore the perimeter trail around the lake, improving the quality of access for a variety of trail uses.
VOCal is excited to help restore the fire-ravaged Skyline Wilderness Park in Napa. Local volunteers have already donated over 1000 volunteer hours since the fires, removing several hundred dead or damaged trees and performing needed trail maintenance on compromised trails. We'll lend our many hands to perform additional restoration work.