|Grizzly Peak from Vollmer Peak|
DISTANCE: 8.5 miles (?)
ELEVATION GAIN: (?)
TIME TAKEN: 4 hours
CLAREMONT CANYON RPD
GRIZZLY PEAK: 1758 ft.
CHAPARRAL PEAK: 1770 ft.
VOLLMER PEAK: 1905 ft.
One major component of my Bay Area "Carless" hikes concept, still in development, is to be the Bear Transit Hill Line, a bus that travels from Downtown Berkeley BART, up through the campus, to it's highest stop, the Space Sciences Lab, which is close to Grizzly Peak Boulevard and the crest of the Berkeley hills. Be forewarned, it costs one dollar for non students / non faculty, it doesn't take Clipper cards, and it only originates/terminates at the BART station on the first (7:35AM) and last two (6:40PM and 7:30PM) trips of the day. All other circuits during the day originate and terminate at Evans Hall on the UC Berkeley campus, which is not a far walk from the BART station. REMEMBER! It costs one dollar in CASH to ride the bus, and that's a one way ticket. Bring two dollars in cash with you if you want to ride the shuttle back down.
|Hill Line map. Click to enlarge.|
|Hill Line schedule. Click to enlarge.|
|Grizzly Peak Trail|
|The beautiful summit of Grizzly Peak|
Without much to do on Chaparral, except eat my only cliff bar, I quickly moved on to my next goal, an apparently unnamed mound that looms over GPB to the South. I had noticed this prominence many times before, as there is a cool view of it from GPB as you drive South. In the ignorance and confusion of my past, I had though that maybe THIS was Grizzly Peak, but now I know better. Crossed GPB again, and got to the place where the De La Veaga trail, The Skyline trail and the trail down to Cal Shakes meet the road. This area is labeled "Scotts Peak Trailhead" on Google Maps, but I can't figure out which one is Scotts Peak Trail, or what Scotts Peak is! I will update when I figure it out. Also at this intersection is a short paved road that leads to the top of the mound which I will call "Frequency Peak," due it's radio antennae.
|Looking towards Las Trampas from Vollmer Peak|
Telegraph Canyon is a very nice descent through the trees to Claremont Avenue, but that's where the enjoyment ends. I guess the only point of this trail is to park at the bottom and walk up towards the top, because if you come down, and want to continue going down on foot, like I did (towards Rockridge BART) you're faced with no choice but to walk along the road. Being the stubborn bastard that I am, I chose this option as opposed to retracing my steps and continuing in the trail system. Take it from from me, walking along this part of Claremont FUCKING SUCKS and is extremely dangerous. It was scarier than all the combined loose rock, poison oak, and rattlesnakes I have ever encountered. There is absolutely no sidewalk or path along the road in this area, and cars rush by at ridiculous speeds around blind hairpin turns. I had to frequently crisscross the road to get to the other side that had slightly more shoulder to protect me. Never walk down here if you can possibly avoid it, it was not made for pedestrians. Dealing with this stretch of road came close to ruining my whole day, and what's worse is the thought that I could have taken the easy alternative of beautiful trails leading down the ridge. Lesson learned! Soon enough, the nightmare was over and I got to the sidewalks of the Claremont District. I stopped in Star Market to peruse the vast beer selection, and then ended my journey at Rockridge BART, re-entering the public transit system at the end of this carless hike.
|Detail of the Tilden Section|
|Map of the complete hike|