Dog Scene (cont.)

Dogs are allowed on leash in almost the entire park and can also run free in the two off – leash play areas which are complete with poop bags and water. There is ample parking and no entrance or parking fee. Restrooms, a pay phone, maps, and drinking water are available at the ranger station. The off-leash area is closed about 30 days a year when it is used for special event parking.
Washington Creek, Petaluma
Submitted by Pete Alexander on 4/27/2007
If you are in the mood to explore Petaluma, some new trails that are perfect for you and your favorite canine friend are now ready for use, thanks to the city fathers. One of the most beautiful is a path along Washington Creek on the east side of town.
My canine buddy Linda Lou and I headed west from the Petaluma Airport along the wide gravel and dirt path paralleling Washington Creek, home to all sorts of wildlife.
We stopped occasionally to take in beautiful sights, sounds and aromas. Two brilliantly blue Jays were turning a eucalyptus tree into a new estate home. A large speckled hawk surprised us as it rose up from the creek winging to a tree farther on. We listened to a tall willow whispering in the breeze as we brushed by. We were also treated to the scent of star jasmine hanging over one of the fences bordering the path.
We continued along this peaceful path, crossing several streets on the way, to the end at East Washington Street. Have time for a smoothie or latté? Go west a few steps on E. Washington to the shopping center to find the Deaf Dog Coffee Shop! Upon your return to the Airport, check out the Two Niner Diner for an awesome lunch or brunch. Dine outside on the patio while watching planes take off and land.
Santa Rosa Creek, Willowside
Submitted by Sandy Lurins on 4/27/2007
Want a country walk but don’t want to drive too far? If you live in Santa Rosa, check out this lovely walk along Santa Rosa creek. It’s two miles of flat, wide path paralleling the creek, which lies below the path. In winter, the creek rushes by but in the warmer months it is just a quiet hush.
Dogs love the creek walk. Like all of Sonoma County, leashes are required, although you should be prepared to encounter some dogs off leash long enough to take a quick swim. I’ve found that the users of this path are very courteous and put their dogs back on leash when others approach.
You’ll share this path with a few runners or bicyclists but mostly it’s people with their dogs. Go early enough in the morning and you’re likely to find some hot-air balloons sailing overhead.