Park District closes regional parks, restricts parking to limit overcrowding for public and staff safety; trails still open

Additionally, park picnic areas are closed, and all group gatherings prohibited.

By Dave Mason, Public Information Supervisor, East Bay Regional Park District

The COVID-19 health emergency remains a serious and evolving situation. This past weekend, the Park District saw more people in parks than on a busy holiday. “We can’t bend the curve if everyone is out. I don’t want to close big, beautiful open spaces. But we can’t see what we saw over the weekend,” California Governor Gavin Newsom said Monday. On Monday, March 23, 2020, Governor Newsom ordered temporary closures for vehicular traffic at State parks in five California counties: Los Angeles County, Marin County, San Mateo County, Sonoma County, and San Diego County.

Unsafe overcrowding is a concern. While the Park District hopes to keep parks and trails open, some closures are necessary to limit overcrowding and maintain social distancing. The list below of parks, developed park areas, parking lots, and entrance points will be closed beginning Friday, March 27, 2020, through Thursday, April 30, 2020. Trails will remain accessible on a walk-in, bike-in basis.

“We are all in this together,” said Park District General Manager Robert Doyle. “We want to help everyone during this crisis by keeping parks open, but safety of the public and our employees is our top priority.”

“If parks are too crowded, please help us keep people safe by going home,” added Doyle.

Ways the public can help keep parks open include:

  • Maintain a 6-foot distance from other people
  • No picnicking, groups, gatherings, or meetups (only immediate households should be together)
  • Pack-in, pack-out trash, including dog poop (there is limited trash collection during COVID-19)

Park visitation and park use will continue to be monitored closely, with additional closures possible. Currently, state and county health departments have told us they want East Bay Regional Parks to remain open and accessible for outdoor activity if possible. However, it may also be necessary to close more park areas based on overcrowding or additional orders from State or local health agencies.

We thank the public for their cooperation and understanding during the COVID-19 public health emergency. Keeping parks open for the public is challenging with limited staffing and the Park District is doing its best to balance the requirements of State and local health agencies’ “Shelter in Place” orders, and the community’s need for exercise and stress relief.

The public is encouraged to check ebparks.org for up-to-date information on closures.

COVID-19 CLOSURES THROUGH THURSDAY, APRIL 30, 2020:

(All picnic areas, restrooms, water fountains, swim facilities/areas, playgrounds, campgrounds, group campsites, backcountry campsites, sports fields, kiosks, and reservable facilities are closed.)

NEW CLOSURES BEGINNING FRIDAY, MARCH 27:

  • Black Diamond – Upper Parking Lot Closed (Parking available at Sidney Flat)
  • Castle Rock Recreation Area Closed
  • Contra Loma Closed (Trails Open from Frederickson Lane)
  • Crown Beach – Otis Parking Lot Closed (Walk-In Access Only)
  • Del Valle Closed (Trail Access from Arroyo Staging Area Only)
  • Diablo Foothills (Limited Parking for Trail Access)
  • Garin/Dry Creek – Meyer’s Garden Closed
  • Point Isabel – Main Parking Area Closed (Walk-In Access Only
  • Reinhardt Redwood Regional ParkRedwood Road Gate Closed
  • Piedmont Stables (Boarders Allowed to Care for Horses)
  • Roberts Regional Recreation Main Park Area Closed (Walk-In Access Only)
  • Shadow Cliffs Closed (Walk-In Access Only)
  • Sibley Volcanic Regional Preserve – Tunnel Road Entrance Closed (All Other Access Points Open)
  • Sunol Regional Wilderness Closed
  • Tilden Botanic Garden – Garden Closed

PREVIOUS CLOSURES (STILL IN EFFECT):

Anthony Chabot Closures

  • Marciel Gate
  • Chabot Equestrian Center Parking Lot (Boarders Allowed for Care for Horses)
  • Skyline Stables (Boarders Allowed for Care for Horses)

Ardenwood Closures

  • Ardenwood Closed

Bay Point Shoreline Closures

  • Closed Due to Construction

Big Break Closures

  • Big Break Visitor Center

Black Diamond Closures

  • Mine Closed
  • Sidney Flats Visitor Center
  • Greathouse Visitor Center

Briones Closures

  • Bear Creek Staging Area

Regional Trails Closures

  • Lafayette-Moraga Old Moraga Ranch Trail (Closed due to Landslide)

Coyote Hills Closures

  • Main Parking Lots
  • Coyote Hills Visitor Center

Crown Beach Closures

  • McKay Parking Lot (Walk-In Access Only)
  • Crab Cove Visitor Center

Del Valle Closures

  • Del Valle Visitor Center

Garin/Dry Creek/Pioneer Closures

  • Visitor Center
  • Apple Orchard

Lake Chabot Closures

  • Boat Ramp (No Boating/No Quagga Inspection)

Lake Temescal Closures

  • South Parking Lot

Leona Canyon Closures

  • Main Staging Area

MLK Shoreline Closures

  • Tidewater Staging Area
  • Tidewater Outdoor Recreation Office
  • Tidewater Oakland Strokes Operations

Quarry Lakes Closures

  • Boat Ramp (No Boating/No Quagga Inspection)

Sunol Closures

  • Sunol Visitor Center

Tidewater Closures (See MLK Shoreline)

  • All Areas Closed

Tilden Closures

  • All Picnic Areas Along Lake Anza and Brook roads
  • Fern Picnic Area Parking
  • Indian Camp Parking Lot, Playground, and Picnic Area
  • Lone Oak Parking Area
  • Lakeview Parking Lot
  • Mineral Springs Parking Lot – No Trails
  • Lake Anza Road and Parking Area
  • Tilden Golf Course
  • Golf Course Gated Lot (Bottom Half)
  • Steam Trains/Golden Gate Live Steamers
  • Merry-Go-Round
  • Native Here Nursery
  • South Park Drive (Continued Newt Closure Past April 1)

Tilden Botanic Garden Closures

  • Botanic Garden Visitor Center

Tilden Nature Area Closures

  • Tilden Nature Area Closed (Walk-In Access Only)
  • Tilden Little Farm
  • Environmental Education Center
  • Indian Camp Parking Lot

Wildcat Canyon Closures

  • Walk-In Entrance Trail into the Alvarado Picnic Area

The East Bay Regional Park District is the largest regional park system in the nation, comprising 73 parks, 55 miles of shoreline, and over 1,300 miles of trails for hiking, biking, horseback riding, and environmental education. The Park District receives more than 25 million visits annually throughout Alameda and Contra Costa counties in the San Francisco Bay Area.

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