December 20, 2018, Napa, CA – To kick off the New Year, Visit Napa Valley encourages visitors to fully experience each town in the Napa Valley one step at a time, to reach the goal of walking 10,000 steps, or, approximately five miles, per day.
Napa Valley’s southernmost community of American Canyon offers abundant open space and scenic trails along the wetlands to the west and ridge trails to the east, providing multiple options to achieve the goal of 10,000 steps, or more.
The Napa River Bay Trail provides views of the San Pablo Bay wetlands and public access to the Napa River. Each step will provide incredible birding opportunities; colorful sea glass at what the locals dub “glass beach;” and dramatic sunsets. Access the Napa River Bay Trail from Rio Del Mar, off Highway 29, and follow Rio Del Mar to Eucalyptus Drive and down to the trailhead parking lot on the corner of Eucalyptus and Wetlands Edge Roads. Head west from the parking lot and choose your own adventure based on desired steps.
For a short, relatively easy 6000 step (three-miles round trip) stroll, follow the trail to the left along the wetlands to “glass beach,” or cross the bridge and head left along the wetlands to the mouth of the Napa River and the Napa River bridge for a total of 10,000 steps round trip. All roads lead to glass beach.
For an extended stroll, turn left off the paved trail for an 8000+ step (approximately four-mile) loop on a fingerling into the wetlands that will ultimately lead back to glass beach. Pack a lunch and enjoy one of the picnic benches at the trailhead. If short on time, simply head straight from the trailhead for a 3000+ step (approximately one-and-a-half-miles) roundtrip to the beach and back. Portable toilets are available in the parking lot. The Napa River Bay Trail is part of the greater San Francisco Bay Trail, providing access to nearly 350 miles of shoreline trails connecting 47 cities around the San Francisco Bay.
If feeling more adventurous, bring hiking shoes and head over to Newell Open Space Preserve on the east side of town for some elevation and bay views along the ridge trail. From Highway 29 heading south, turn left on Donaldson Way to Newell Drive, turn left and park in the small parking lot on the right to access the trailhead. This rustic trail offers views of mustard seed in the spring and majestic views from the ridge; as well as an abundance of wildlife including birds, cattle and deer. From the lot, hikers can clock nearly 14,000 steps, (approximately seven miles) round trip, when following the trail out past the small gate and up the ridge. Insect repellant and an ample water supply are highly encouraged. Portable toilets are available in the small, dirt parking lot and at mile one near the picnic grove.