National Trails Day: Pitch In and Get Out to Explore!


Volunteers at work

National Trails Day is about partnerships—finding ways to work together to ensure public lands remain open, accessible where possible, and enjoyable for all.

On June 4, the Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy and National Park Service will partner with REI, the One Tam agencies, the American Hiking Society, and the California Coastal Conservancy to celebrate our extraordinary privilege of enjoying a community, city, and Bay Area connected by trails!

During this year’s National Trails Day, we strengthen our bond with the California Coastal Conservancy, which has funded the connection of Upper and Lower Milagra Ridges, by way of an official Milagra-Battery Trail. This new segment of the Bay Area Ridge Trail (BART) in Pacifica fulfills another portion of the BART Council’s mission to create and maintain a 550-mile multi-use trail on the ridges surrounding San Francisco Bay.

Together, Upper and Lower Milagra Ridges constitute an island oasis for the residents of Pacifica and San Mateo County—and for many of the area’s birds, reptiles, and mammals. For over 15 years, Oceana High School students have been discovering and preserving the ridge’s coastal scrub plants, including summer and silver lupines, which provide a playground and home for mission blue butterflies, coyotes, and red-legged frogs.

Easy Hikes for All

These hand-picked trails are great for park visitors of all ages and abilities.

• Trails along Mitchell Road and Smith Road in Gerbode Valley (Marin) provide some beautiful scenic spots as well as a reasonably easy and accessible stroll.

• The Sunset Trail, at Fort Funston, offers easy flat terrain and access for carts, wheelchairs, and strollers.

• At Fort Miley, in San Francisco, the Veterans Trail—beginning at the Veterans Administration Hospital—is a wonderful loop that was constructed by National Trails Day volunteers during the course of the last three years.

Discover more recommended trails.

The Coastal Conservancy’s funds have employed two full-time Golden Gate Trail Crews to begin the transformation of criss-crossed and eroded social trails into sustainable trails that preserve access while protecting habitat. This is not an easy feat. The crews will be working long days to construct new switchbacks that are easy on our legs going uphill, and also discourage water from gaining speed and washing our trails into the ocean!

As is often the case, staff and funding only take us part of the way. On National Trails Day, the Trail Crews need you to support their efforts! Help make the work lighter—and more joyful—by joining us to move hundreds of cubic yards of trail surfacing, build fences to protect the surrounding habitat, and decommission social trails.

The Milagra-Battery Trail is one more connection—and one more vein—in a world-renowned trail system that allows us to remain close to the land, work collaboratively with our community, and share time with loved ones.

We need you to create and celebrate this next link in our national parks! Volunteer on National Trails Day at Milagra Ridge and other projects across the Golden Gate National Parks! Learn more about all the sites in San Mateo, Marin, and San Francisco counties.

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