Friday, October 3, 2008

Birding the San Francisco Bay Trail

We have yet to visit the San Francisco Bay Bird Observatory down in Alviso. Their web site,, lists interesting classes and outings throughout the year, rated as to how family-friendly or arduous they are. It also has an excellent list of birding resources for the Bay Area.

They offer a free booklet, Birding the San Francisco Bay Trail, which I recommend to anyone reading this blog. It lists 16 sites around the Bay Trail, with short descriptions and clear directions for access. We have visited about half these sites on our own, and can vouch that accessible birding is provided. Handicapped access, restrooms, picnic tables, and benches is clearly indicated for each listing.

My favorite local spot, the shell bar near Tarpon Street in Foster City, made the top 16, along with Palo Alto Baylands, Coyote Point, Las Gallinas Sanitary District, and Sholllenberger Park. Looks like I have some posts to catch up on!

Another great resource, not free but available for $15 from bookstores at nature centers is a series of detailed maps of the Bay Trail. It's great for spotting potential birding "hot spots" along bays, inlets, preserves, and sewage treatment ponds. You can see the maps online and a list of where to buy them at

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