Berkeley’s best ingredients for fall hiking: forest for some color, ridges for some huge views, plus redwoods and a tranquil lake. Ta-dah! It’s all within this 3.3-mile hike in Tilden Regional Park.
Start at Lake Anza’s north end, crossing the bridge over the lake’s spillway. Descend left on Wildcat Gorge Trail into a forested path that will start turning into a vibrant mix of golden, red, and dark green leaves as autumn deepens.
The Curran Trail takes you up and out of the forest onto a grassy ridgetop overlooking Wildcat Canyon, aptly named for its potential to spot bobcats. Head left on Meadows Canyon Trail, which continues along the grass- and shrub-covered ridge side before descending to Wildcat Creek.
Follow Wildcat Gorge Trail through redwoods and underneath mossy branches that span the width of the creek. A final short climb takes you back to Lake Anza, where you can follow a footpath around the oasis for an added loop of nature’s luxuries. Important if you have a dog: Do not let your dog enter Lake Anza or drink any of the water from the lake … the water currently is unsafe with blue-green algae. No swimming is allowed for people, currently either. Info.
Parking is available at Lake Anza’s main parking lot. Parking can be limited, so it is recommended that this hike be done in the morning before peak hours. Rattlesnakes have been reported on this hike, so be on the lookout in sunny areas. Dog-friendly! IMPORTANT: