Park It by Ned MacKay: Meander through Morgan

Morgan Territory Regional Preserve east of Mt. Diablo is one of the more remote and beautiful regional parklands, with grasslands, oak groves, and panoramic views of the mountain and Central Valley.

Naturalist Kevin Dixon will explore the park on a hike from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 6. It’s a strenuous trek, for ages 12 and older. Meet Kevin at the staging area on Morgan Territory Road, about nine miles south of the junction with Marsh Creek Road in Clayton. Drive with caution; Morgan Territory Road is narrow and winding. For information, call 888-327-2757, ext. 2750.:

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There are lots of other activities planned in the regional parks as summer gives way to autumn.

Over at Big Break Regional Shoreline, it’s scat track time from 2 to 3 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 6. Learn what kinds of animals have wandered past by examining the droppings they left behind.

Big Break is at 69 Big Break Road off Oakley’s Main Street. For information, call 888-327-2757, ext. 3050.

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Las Trampas Regional Widerness in San Ramon is another rugged and beautiful regional parkland with abundant wildlife.

Naturalist Ashley Adams will lead a hike there from 10 a.m. to noon on Sunday, Oct. 7 in search of hawks, falcons and other birds of prey. Be advised, the hike probably will involve some hill climbing; it’s all up and down at Las Trampas.

And naturalist Ashley Grenier plans a family photography walk at Las Trampas from 1:30 to 3 p.m. the same day. It’s a stroll along the Bollinger Creek Trail. The idea is to hand over your camera to your children and see how they view the world from their unique perspective closer to the ground.

For either hike, meet in the staging area at the north end of Bollinger Canyon Road off Crow Canyon Road. And for information on either program, call 510-544-3249.

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Or you can awaken your spider senses on a walk with naturalist Anthony Fisher from 1 to 2:30 p.m. on Sunday, Oct. 7 at the Tilden Nature Area near Berkeley.

First Anthony will introduce the group to a very large spider (I’m guessing a tarantula), then everyone will walk into the woods in search of other eight-leggers.

Meet Anthony at Tilden’s Environmental Education Center, which is at the north end of Central Park Drive. Call 510-544-2233.

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Anthony also plans a series of sunset photography hikes in the regional parks. The first is from 5 to 7:30 p.m. on Sunday, Oct. 7 at Pt. Pinole Regional Shoreline in Richmond. Bring a camera and tripod, or your smart phone, to capture the parkland under autumn’s skies.

Meet Anthony in the parking lot past the bridge at the bay end of Atlas Road. Call 510-544-2233.

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As mentioned last week, the 25th annual Gathering of Ohlone Peoples will be from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Sunday, Oct. 7 at Coyote Hills Regional Park in Fremont.

Ohlones from several tribes will share their culture with music, song, dance, stories and demonstration of ancient skills such as basketry and jewelry making.

Coyote Hills is at the end of Patterson Ranch Road off Paseo Padre Parkway. There’s a parking fee of $5 per vehicle; the gathering is free of charge. Call 510-544-3220.

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For more information on all kinds of programs and attractions in the regional parks, visit the web site,

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