The Rodeo Valley Trail is a historic ranch road that runs north of Bunker Road from Wolfback Ridge to Bobcat Trail in the Marin Headlands. In 2011 and 2012, the Parks Conservancy and National Park Service rehabilitated the trail to improve visitor access, restore riparian habitat, reduce trail flooding during the winter, and create a safer, more scenic alternative to Bunker Road.
Trail Improvements Included:
- Construction and installation of two new bridges and connector trails.
- Resurfacing of Rodeo Valley Trail from Bobcat Trail east to the new Capehart Bridge
- Moving pedestrian and cycling traffic off of Bunker Road while improving the visitor experience
- Installation of drainage features to keep the trail surface dry year-round
- Realignment of the trail away from wetland habitat
- Restoration of adjacent wetland and riparian areas
Protecting Habitat and Ensuring Visitor Access
Rodeo Valley Trail improvements were thoughtfully designed to enhance the visitor experience while also protecting and restoring native habitat. The western portion of the trail was realigned uphill, away from healthy riparian habitat. The old alignment footprint was decommissioned and planted with over 17,000 native plants (representing more than 50 species) that were grown in the Marin Headlands Native Plant Nursery.
The two new bridges and connector trails also help to achieve these dual goals. Now, visitors can cross and enjoy the creek without disturbing wildlife such as the California giant salamander and the threatened California red-legged frog. Additionally, the western-most bridge at Smith Road is designed to accommodate equestrian traffic. Across the way from the historic Presidio Stables, its prime location serves as the main access point for equestrians using this trail system.
The rehabilitation of the Rodeo Valley Trail was made possible thanks to the support of members of the Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy.