Wetland Makeover

Walk Hamilton Wetlands in Novato

With egrets mingling in the maze of marshes, and unobstructed views of Mount Burdell to the north and Mount Diablo to the east, it's hard to imagine that just over a year ago Novato's serene Hamilton Wetlands were the concrete remains of a former military runway. Now they're yours to explore, thanks to a new 2.7-mile (one-way) section of the Bay Trail that was unveiled last summer. Traverse the restored area along a flat dirt path punctuated by benches, three viewing platforms, and informative placards about birdlife and the wetlands restoration project. Access this segment of the Bay Trail via a short and well-marked half mile up and over adjacent Reservoir Hill. You'll get outstanding views from the shoreline out to San Pablo Bay. Once at the bottom of Reservoir Hill, turn right onto the Bay Trail. A wall separates bay and trail from homes as you make your way past Hamilton Army Airfield. Pass through sloping black oak forest as you approach the southernmost end of the trail, across from prime water birding territory. Bring binoculars!

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