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Educational Loop

Intermediate

Trail

4.3 mile 6.9 kilometer out and back
91% Runnable
Intermediate

Elevation

Ascent: 622' 190 m
Descent: -621' -189 m
High: 1,596' 486 m
Low: 1,159' 353 m

Grade

Avg Grade: 5% (3°)
Max Grade: 18% (10°)

Dogs

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Map Key

Trail shared by Wendy Wheeler

A great run to explore volcanoes in Oakland.

Wendy Wheeler

Features Birding · Views · Wildflowers · Wildlife

Overview

Enjoy a self-guided geological tour of Round Top. The run has 360-degree views of San Francisco, Mt. Diablo, and the Delta!

Need to Know

Check yourself for ticks after running in this park.

Description

You can pick up a map at the Sibley Staging Area and follow the self-guided tour if you'd like.

From the Sibley Staging Area, take the Round Top Loop Trail to the EBMUD Water Tank. You'll see dark basalt dike.

Continue on the rocky, fully exposed Round Top Loop Trail to the Quarry Trail. You'll see the iron-rich red rocks, readily oxidized by atmospheric exposure.

As you head to the Pond Trail, the fire trail is exposed and has amazing views of the canyon. When you hit the road, turn right up the hill to Pond Trail. The trail provides shade, but beware of the family of quail living in the bushes. They flew out and scared the crap out of me. The pond is filled with frogs. There is a picnic table at the pond, but the mosquitoes will drive you away from this spot.

Go back up Pond Trail and take the first unmarked trail to the right. The trail turns into a narrow, overgrown singletrack trail. The map doesn't show the trail connecting to Volcanic Trail, but it does connect at sign #11 with a view of Siesta Valley.
Continue to sign #10 to see the red rock formations. At sign #9, has remains of the old volcano. Signs #6, #7 and #8, there are red rocks and basaltic flows.

Continue on Volcanic Trail and take the unmarked trail up to the ridge. You'll enjoy some of the best views of the Bay Area from the ridge. Stop and check out the labyrinths on your way to Quarry Pit (sign #2). The quarry contains the largest labyrinth in the park.

Take the singletrack Round Top Loop Trail back to the parking lot. The trail is tree covered.

Park information: ebparks.org/parks/sibley

Flora & Fauna

Flora: french broom, grasses, native bushes, pine trees
Fauna: deer, quail, frogs, hawks, variety of small bird, blue jays, and lizards

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Trail Ratings

  5.0 from 3 votes

#865

Overall
  5.0 from 3 votes
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Run Rankings

#144

in California

#865

Overall
43 Views Last Month
1,130 Since Jun 2, 2018
Intermediate

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Photos

Sign #8: "This huge, reddish-brown block of lava fell from the cliffs to the upper right. The lava cooled and hardened while it was still moving, resulting in dramatic fragmentation, known as "autobrecciation" (self broken)."
Jun 3, 2018 near Orinda, CA
Sign #1: "dark basalt dike, a feeder of lava to the crater, that cuts through a sequence of tuffbreccias (grayish brown) and pebbly mudstones (light gray), inside and near the crater bottom."
Jun 3, 2018 near Orinda, CA
View from the Water Tank
Jun 3, 2018 near Orinda, CA
Fog burning off over the hills.
Jul 21, 2019 near Orinda, CA
Wind at the top
Jun 11, 2018 near Orinda, CA
Watch the sunset and moonrise
Jun 2, 2018 near Orinda, CA

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