SUNDOWN HIKE MARCH 23
Santa Rosa: Unwind with relaxation exercises and deep breathing exercises 6-7:30 p.m. Thursday at the Laguna de Santa Rosa Trail, 6303 Highway 12. Meet at the trailhead. Call 707-565-7888 for information.
TRAILS FOR TOTS MARCH 24
Healdsburg: Children 3-4 years old learn about the outdoors during a bilingual program of songs, stories, nature-themed crafts and a short walk at Riverfront Regional Park, 7821 Eastside Road 10-11:30 a.m. Friday. Bring water and a snack. Parking $7. Call 707-565-7888 for details.
AMPHIBIAN SEARCH MARCH 25
Geyserville: Guided moderate to strenuous 3-mile hike through amphibian habitats at Modini Mayacamas Preserves, 4020 Pine Flat Road Saturday 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Meet at pine Flat Road and Red Winery Road. Bring lunch, water and wear waterproof clothing. Suggested donation $15-$25. Limit of 15 hikers. Information and sign up at www.egret.org. or call 707-431-8184.
STORY WALK MARCH 25
Rohnert Park: Sonoma County Regional Parks and Regional Libraries hold their first Story Walk that combines walking and reading outdoors, 10 a.m.-12 p.m. Saturday at Crane Creek Regional Park, 5000 Pressley Road. Kids read “Call Me Tree” during their 1-mile walk. $7 parking. Call 707-565-2041 for information.
FOREST THERAPY MARCH 25
Duncans Mills: Immerse yourself in the forest during a therapy walk at the Pomo Canyon Campgrounds Saturday 10 a.m.-1 p.m. The guided stroll with instructor Sequoia Etcheverry is for adults only. Register online at www.stewardscr.org or call 707-869-9177 for information. $16 for members, $20 for non-members of Stewards of the Coast and Redwoods.
BIRD WATCHING MARCH 26
Santa Rosa: Join Lisa Hug for bird watching in non publicly accessible areas of the Laguna de Santa Rosa Sunday 8:30 a.m.-1 p.m. Meet at the Laguna Environmental Center, 900 Sanford Road. $45, pre-registration required. Geared toward adults with older teens. Visit www.lagunadesantarosa.org for details and pre-registration.
WILDFLOWER WALK MARCH 28
Santa Rosa: Wander 2-3 miles over steep terrain at Hood Mountain Regional Park and Open Space Preserve, 1450 Pythian Road 5:30-7:30 p.m. Tuesday. Learn how fruits and seed disperse to grow the next generation of wildflowers. Meet at the Pythian Road entrance, parking $7. Call 707-565-3080 for information.
SUNDOWN HIKE MARCH 30
Windsor: Settle down with relaxation exercises and a meditation walk at Foothill Regional Park 1351 Arata Lane 6-7:30 p.m. Thursday. Parking $7. Call 707-565-7888 for information.
Lake Ilsanjo Loop at Annadel State Park
Hiking distance: 6.2 miles
Hiking time: 3.5 hours
Elevation gain: 600 feet
Difficulty: moderate to slightly strenuous
Exposure: mix of shaded forest and open meadows
Dogs: not allowed
Maps: USGS Santa Rosa and Kenwood / Annadel State Park map
In the 1930s, Joe Coney bought the land that is now Annadel State Park. In the 1950s, he built Lake Ilsanjo on Spring Creek and named it after himself and his wife, Ilse. Joe used the 26-acre lake as a hunting and fishing retreat for his friends. Lake Ilsanjo is now the highlight of the park, popular with picnickers, mountain bikers, joggers, equestrians, hikers, and anglers hoping to catch bluegill and bass. The lake is surrounded by meadows filled with wildflowers.
This hike leads to Lake Ilsanjo from midway along Channel Drive. The trail circles the lakeshore and returns via the Richardson Trail, making a large loop through the center of the park. The Richardson Trail is an old ranch road shaded by redwoods and mixed oak woodlands.
To the trailhead
6201 Channel Drive, Santa Rosa
From Highway 101 and Highway 12 in Santa Rosa, drive 1.5 miles west on Highway 12 to Farmers Lane. Turn left and drive 0.8 miles to Montgomery Drive, following the Highway 12 signs. Turn right and continue 2.7 miles to Channel Drive. Turn right and go 1.5 miles to the posted North Burma Trail and Channel Trail. Park along the right side of the road. A parking fee is required.
From the town of Kenwood, drive 5.5 miles north on Highway 12 (Sonoma Highway) to Los Alamos Road. Turn left and drive 0.2 miles to Melita Road. Turn right and immediately veer left onto Montgomery Drive. Drive a half mile to Channel Drive and turn left. Continue 1.5 miles to the posted North Burma Trail and Channel Trail. Park along the right side of the road. A parking fee is required.
Head up the forested slope on the North Burma Trail. Follow the west side of a stream, originating from False Lake Meadow. Rock-hop over the creek and climb two switchbacks. Pass a 15-foot cataract, reaching a posted trail split on a flat at 0.7 miles. The North Burma Trail goes left. Stay straight on the Live Oak Trail and traverse the hillside, skirting the east side of grassy False Lake Meadow. At the summit, pass the site of an old quarry on the left. Gradually descend and cross a small bridge, emerging from the shady oak forest into False Lake Meadow. Cross the tree-rimmed grasslands to a junction with the Rough Go Trail at 1.6 miles. Follow the Rough Go Trail straight ahead through the rocky grassland. At just over 2 miles, the Rough Go Trail ends at a junction with the Lake Trail on the west side of Lake Ilsanjo. Both directions circle the lake.
For this hike, curve right, crossing the dam and spillway. Loop around the south and east sides of the picturesque lake. Cross two of the lake’s feeder streams and a picnic area with a side loop on the left. At the north end of the lake is a four-way junction at 3 miles. The left fork loops back to the Rough Go Trail. The Louis Trail continues straight ahead for a shorter 5.1-mile hike.
For this hike, bear right on the W.P. Richardson Trail, an old ranch road. Head up the dirt road, staying left past a junction with the South Burma Trail. Traverse the hill, passing the North Burma Trail. Begin an easy descent through a forest of redwoods, Douglas fir and coast live oak, passing Steve’s “S” Trail at 3.9 miles. (The “S” Trail is a steep, hiking-only trail.) Pass a picnic area, water tank and wood steps to a quarry site, all on the right. At 4.6 miles, pass the Two Quarry Trail on the left and continue down to the parking lot at the east end of Channel Drive at 5.5 miles. Head left and walk 0.7 miles on forested Channel Drive, or take the Channel Trail (parallel to the road) back to the trailhead.
Source: "Day Hikes Around Sonoma County 2nd Edition, by Robert Stone (Day Hike Books, March 2016)