Upcoming Field Trips

Golden Gate Audubon offers more than 100 field trips annually for birders of all levels. Our trips explore local areas from Golden Gate Park to the East Bay shoreline and hills, as well as such wildlife-rich destinations as California’s Central Valley and the Sierra Nevada.

We also sponsor trips to other parts of the U.S. and to international destinations, including Latin America, Africa, and Australia. Field trips are led by experienced birders who are passionate in sharing their knowledge of birds and their habitats. See our Travel with GGAS page for upcoming travel opportunities.  

Local trips are free, except for any park entrance fees. Advance reservations may be necessary. It is advisable to confirm with the trip leader that a trip will take place as planned, especially if inclement weather is expected. Reports of recent and past field trips are on these pages.

For questions about individual field trips, contact the leaders. If you cannot reach a leader, contact 510-843-2222 or email volunteer@goldengateaudubon.org.

We encourage people to share rides to field trips! See the bottom of this page for information about our friendly, easy-to-use GGAS carpool group.


Field Trips

June 1st, 2018

June 2018    

Dimond Park and Sausal Creek, Oakland
Wednesday, June 20, 8:30 – 10:00 a.m.
(Third Wednesday bird walk)
Penn Hughes, hughespenn@gmail.com or (510) 499-5491 for messages.

We will loop through the lower creek area, then through the playground area, and then up Sausal Creek Meet at the parking lot above the recreation center. We will loop through the lower creek area, then through the playground area, and then up Sausal Creek. The car entrance to Dimond Park is at the corner of Hanly Road (from Lyman Road (Fruitvale Avenue)) and El Centro Avenue (from Park Blvd.)  The road loops left up to the parking lot. There are rest rooms in Dimond Park, for sure open later, perhaps NOT OPEN at 8:30am. Please, no dogs. Results of the bird walk will be reported on eBird. Include your email when you sign in on-site if you want to see the eBird report. You can tweak it for what you remember that I don’t!


Valle Vista Staging Area, Upper San Leandro Reservoir, Moraga
Friday, June 22, 8:30 — 11:30 a.m.
(Second Friday bird walk; leaders and venue vary by month)
Madeline Brane, mbrane@sbcglobal.net, cell 650-235-5325; Johan Langewis, jlangewis@sbcglobal.net, cell (510) 541-1353

This EBMUD watershed land features a great variety of habitats: chaparral and scrub, grassland, pine-oak woodland, marsh, and the top of the reservoir. Likely birds include raptors, sparrows, California Thrasher, nuthatches, wrens, and the shy Wood Ducks. Walking is on hard-packed trails, with some gentle up and down hill. There is a pit toilet at the staging area, but no drinking water.

We’ll be walking about 2 miles. Meet at the Valle Vista Staging Area parking lot. From CA-24, take exit 9, the Orinda-Moraga exit.  Head toward Moraga. Go about 4.5 miles to the T intersection. Then turn right onto Canyon Rd. Go about 1 mile and turn left into the Valle Vista Staging Area parking lot. Google Maps link: https://goo.gl/maps/XBCSo4xHjzq

Families with kids are encouraged. Heavy rain cancels.


Lassen Volcanic National Park
Friday-Sunday, June 22, 23, 24
Leaders:  Dan and Joan Murphy, (415) 564-0074
Preferred means of communicating is by e-mail: murphsf@comcast.net

Join Dan and Joan on the annual GGAS family camping excursion to
Lassen.  In past years we have seen Black Swift, Bald Eagle, Osprey, Townsend’s Solitaire, Mountain Bluebird, Calliope Hummingbird, Black-backed Woodpecker, Williamson’s Sapsucker and many of the flycatchers, warblers and finches that breed in the mountains.

FRIDAY AND SUNDAY MORNINGS we will meet at the Manzanita Lake
Campground store at 7:00 a.m.  We will bird around the lake for 2-3
hours, return to camp for breakfast, then rendezvous again at the store at 10:45 a.m. for another outing.

FRIDAY we will take a leisurely hike of 3 to 5 miles on one of Lassen’s beautiful trails.  We may climb as much as 700′.  Wear sturdy shoes and bring lunch and liquids.  Suntan lotion, a hat, mosquito repellent and warm clothing may also be necessary.

SUNDAY we will drive through the park, making frequent stops for birding.  We usually stop birding and head for home or camp after lunch at Summit Lake Campground.

On SATURDAY, campers will meet by the camp store at 7:30 a.m. and caravan north to Burney Falls, Fall River Valley and Baum Lake. Those staying at the Hat Creek Resort can meet us at around 8:00 a.m. at the Vista Point about 12 miles north of Lassen on Hwys. 44 & 89.  Bring lunch and liquids.  Since this is a long and tiring day we suggest joining us for dinner at a local restaurant (if one is available) or for a picnic dinner. We’ll allow time to make a food and gas run into Burney. Please contact us by e-mail or phone to let us know if you are planning to attend. We will know our campsite number by then, so we’ll let you know. We may have to cut off attendance if the group is larger than in past years.

DIRECTIONS:  From the Bay Area drive north on I-5 to its junction with Hwy. 44 in Redding.  Go east on Hwy. 44 to the northwest entrance of Lassen.  Camping facilities are available at the Manzanita Lake Campground. Loops A and C by reservation only, loops B and D on a first-come-first-served basis. Reservations can be made online at www.recreation.gov or by calling 877.444.6777.

Lodging is available about 15 mi. north of the park at Hat Creek Resort, Old Station [530] 335-7121.  Other information can be obtained from the park headquarters, Mineral, CA 96063.   [$ at Lassen and Burney Falls]

Lake Merritt and Lakeside Park, Oakland
Wednesday, June 27, 9:30 a.m. – noon
(Fourth Wednesday bird walk)
Ruth Tobey, 510.717.3264, ruthtobey@gmail.com; Hilary Powers, hilary@powersedit.com

June is one of our quieter months, but the cormorant rookery will still be in full swing, and with any luck, Hank-the-rescue-pelican will have friends to keep him company. There’s never a bad time to see Lake Merritt….

Meet at the large spherical cage near the Nature Center at Perkins and Bellevue. We will bird around there, then go up the garden path toward Children’s Fairyland or walk down the lake toward Embarcadero, after which we will cover what we missed. Public transit: Take the 12, N, or NL bus to Grand and Perkins, and walk into the park on Perkins. Driving: The boathouse lot near the spherical cage is the best spot to park, but there’s plenty of parking along Bellevue between the boathouse and the nature center. Enter via Bellevue near Children’s Fairyland; the $2 “two hour” pass is probably OK even though the trip is about three hours, as the dashboard cards don’t have a start time on them.


GGAS Is Looking For New Field Trip Leaders

If you’re a birder and have favorite spots that you would like to share, please consider joining our cadre of volunteer field trip leaders.

It might sound a little scary (“Who me? I can’t lead a field trip.”) but it’s really fun and quite easy.

We’re planning some training walks.  We’ll help you write trip descriptions and find background resources on the places you love to go birding.

And you don’t need to be able to identify every bird. You’ll be successful by organizing an enjoyable walk at an interesting location.

Need a coach? If you’d like a mentor, we’ll match you up with an experienced field trip leader.

If you’re interested (even if you’re maybe a little interested, but also a little nervous) contact
Maureen Lahiff, adult education committee chair, 510.484.6529MLahiff@aol.com or our field trip coordinator, Steve Lombardi, hotrock175@gmail.com