A bobcat paused just long enough for Tara McIntire to take this extraordinary photo. Copyright by Tara McIntire.

Appreciate the bobcats in our Hillside. El Cerrito’s roughly 100-acre Hillside Natural Area provides many benefits not just to the humans among us but to wildlife. Wildlife, especially larger creatures, require sizable habitat in which to roam.

Tara McIntire, a longtime Trail Trekker who has lead birding walks on behalf of our organization, often walks in the Hillside, where she recently photographed this magnificent animal – one of our neighbors.

“It froze in the shadow, then took off,” Tara writes. “Lucky I had a chance at one photo!  I actually saw two cats.” Tara adds: “I think it's a good reminder to folks to keep their dogs on leash.”

“I have also heard two hooting pairs of owls in various locations recently,” Tara writes. “I know we have had a successful nest in the last year, so hopefully they will make it happen again.”

Next time you walk in the Hillside Natural Area, keep an eye open for the wildlife among us.

Hikers enjoyed Dave’s Motorcycle Hill History Hike during the May 2022 Hillside Festival. Photo courtesy of El Cerrito Trail Trekkers.

Join our Motorcycle Hill History Climb. Learn about the motorcycle hill climbs that in the 1920s attracted thousands of spectators to town, about the origins of the Hillside Natural Area, and about El Cerrito’s raucous past as a gambling mecca as we gaze out on our town from on high and enjoy a moderately paced walk. 

This is a steep hike so please wear appropriate shoes. We will not ride motorcycles. Saturday, November 5, 2022, 4 to 6 p.m. Meet at the bottom of Motorcycle Hill Trail, where Navellier and Blake streets meet (near 1636 Navellier). Leader:  Dave Weinstein. Like all our hikes, this one is free.

Documentary filmmaker Judy Irving will be the speaker during Trail Trekkers annual meeting, which will also feature our annual report to members, general discussion, and elections of officers. Courtesy of Judy Irving

Mark your calendar for Trail Trekkers annual meeting. This will be our first live, in-person annual meeting since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic and it will be a special one. Besides the chance for members to vote for officers – and to nominate potential additions to the board – we will feature a very special speaker on the afternoon of Saturday January 21, 4 p.m. to 6 p.m., location to be determined.

Join us to hear celebrated San Francisco filmmaker Judy Irving discuss her work and what inspires her, and show brief clips from her films focusing on the urban/wildlife interface.

Judy Irving is a Sundance-and-Emmy-Award-winning filmmaker whose theatrical credits include The Wild Parrots of Telegraph Hill, a feature documentary about the relationship between a homeless street musician and a flock of wild parrots in San Francisco, and Pelican Dreams, about California brown pelicans and the people who know them best. 

Her many other film projects, including local gems like Treasures of the Greenbelt and Secrets of the Bay, are detailed on her nonprofit Pelican Media website.  In 2015 Judy was invited to become a voting member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences. Her upcoming feature release, Cold Refuge, tells the story of people facing adversity who find meaning and community through Bay swimming. 

Take part in the next Baxter Creek Work Party on Sunday, November 6, 10 a.m. to noon. Please join city staff and other volunteers at Baxter Creek Gateway Park in this jewel on the Ohlone Greenway. The activities will include litter removal, invasive plant removal and native plant care. 

All ages are welcome (under 18 with guardian). Please wear long sleeves, long pants, and closed-toe shoes. Bring water. The city will provide tools, bags, gloves, and sanitizer. There are no bathrooms at the park. We will meet at 10 a.m. at Conlon Avenue and the Ohlone Greenway. RSVP by email or phone:  or 510-215-4350

Baxter Creek Gateway Park Volunteer Days take place on the first Sunday of each month, except during major holiday weekends, in which case we will meet the following Sunday. The final event in 2022 will be December 4. 

Buy our El Cerrito Trail Map. The second edition of this map is available at three stores, Jenny K , Builders Booksource on Fourth Street in Berkeley, and Pegasus books on Solano Avenue.

Or you can buy a map from us or get one “free” by joining Trail Trekkers. Send $6 for a map to our treasurer, Pam Austin, 834 Kearny St., EC, 94530

Have you renewed your membership? It only costs $20 annually to belong to Trekkers, and $500 buys a life membership. Please renew now or join by going to our website and downloading the membership form.

And consider an additional donation as well. Funds go for trail work, to install trail signs, for a fund to purchase additional open space, as well as incidental expenses. Donations are tax deductible as allowed by law.

Trekkers thanks new and renewing members and donors:

Peitsa Hirvonen
Marlene Keller
Philip and Katherine Kelly
Margae Knox
Arely Lemus
David Lingren and Ilana Schatz
Robert Scharf
Patti Tsai-Steiner

El Cerrito Trail Trekkers board of directors:
Dave Weinstein, president,
Wade Huntley, vice president
Barbara Lass, secretary,
Pam Austin, treasurer,
Clare Sheridan, member at large,
Melissa Hobbs, member at large,


Copyright © 2022 El Cerrito Trail Trekkers, All rights reserved.
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