BERKELEY PATH & PARK STORIES
WHO NEEDS A STAIR CLIMBER?
As my husband Tom and I planned our move from New Jersey to Berkeley in 2003, I declared that my days as a van-driving soccer mom were over. Vowing to get out from behind the wheel, I told our real estate agent that we would consider only houses within walking distance of BART, a grocery store, a dry cleaners, shops, and at least two places with really good coffee.
Garber Park: A Natural Treasure Restored
On the south slope of Claremont Canyon above the Claremont Hotel, lies one of the best-kept secrets in the Berkeley-Oakland Hills: Garber Park. This 13-acre City of Oakland wildland park has significant stands of big leaf maple, California buckeyes, regenerating coast live oak, and the typical understory found in woodland forests.
TAKE A WALK ON OUR FAVORITE PATHS
“To the harried urban resident, the pathways offer leafy garden corridors of quiet, removed from the world of noise beyond … day after day, as informal extensions of Berkeley’s parks, the pathways give us more ways to enjoy nature.” Paul Grunland
These words, written by one of our original BPWA board members,have appeared on all seven editions of our map and are truer than ever.
We hope they’ll inspire you to take a path walk.
Newly Renamed Path Memorializes California's First Poet Laureate and Librarian: Ina Coolbrith
Last year, we renamed Bret Harte Lane to memorialize California’s first poet Laureate, Ina Coolbrith. In June, the Berkeley Historical Plaque Project installed a plaque at the bottom of the path to highlight Coolbrith’s contributions to the Bay Area's thriving literary scene in the late 19th Century.
New Handrails on Upper Covert Path Mark the Start of Long-Awaited Handrail Corridor
More than 300’ of new handrails now make it easier to use Upper Covert Path, which connects Cragmont and Keeler Avenues. The handrails on this long, steep path are the first step in what BPWA hopes will one day become an official handrail corridor. Intended as a route for people who need a little extra help to enjoy some of hills and views in North Berkeley, the designated corridor will provide a safe, scenic way to go from Euclid Avenue to Grizzly Peak Blvd. — or the reverse. It will include two older concrete stairways, which always have had handrails; three newer wood-tie paths that BPWA volunteers have built, two of which still need handrails; and some gentle streets in between those paths.
Our Newest Path Will Honor John Muir
Our newest path will also have a new name. Completed this fall, Keeler Walk (#32 on our map) soon will be christened John Muir Path. It is the 34th path that BPWA volunteers have built with wood timbers and connects Grizzly Peak Blvd. and Creston Rd., midway between the end of Euclid and Marin Aves. Read more about John Muir path and the dedication on Sat. February 25th