Bodega Bay Rentals, LLC

Doran Regional Park upcoming events and FUN!

Doran Regional Park
201 Doran Beach Road
Bodega Bay, CA 94923

Parking: $7 (I leave a Parks Pass in our vacation rentals to bypass having to pay)
Park hours: 7AM to Sunset
Dogs: Allowed on leash
Ranger Phone: 707.875.3540

Doran Beach Weather Station

I’ve mentioned this park/beach ad nauseam but its worth repeating.  AND… there are some fun scheduled events coming up!  October is a great month to visit the coast.  In fact my favorite months are Nov-Feb.  The weather is usually quite nice in Northern California and the ocean is wonderful to behold when there are storms.  There is usually always a few hours to get out and comb the beach even after a good rain.  Lots of objects wash up on the beach and I try and make it a point to head out at low tide. The winds seem to be at their worst during the late spring/summer months in the afternoons.  Evenings say post 6pm can be quite lovely for a sunset walk.

Things to do at Doran Park:

  • Camping: If your a camper, there are a 120 tent and RV campsites year-round.  It can get VERY breezy here so cautions on tent camping…been there, done THAT!  RV’s are great though!  Of course another option is vacation rentals.
  • Trails: Pinnacle Gulch and Short Gulch located in the Bodega Harbour community.  From the rocks on the Eastern Bodega Harbor end of the beach to the jetty at Doran Beach the length of beach is about 2 miles. I absolutely love walking this stretch.  Its flat with a gentle slope and the waves are wonderful.  Occasional sleeper waves even in this area so never turn your back on the ocean.  I MUCH prefer walking in this area then other beaches along the Sonoma Coast.  My pooch (on leash) loves it as well and I know its generally safe for him to run in the water.
  • Extras: There are accessible campsites and boardwalk areas for handicapped individuals and even Beach wheelchairs available.  There is also an electric vehicle charging station in the Cypress day-use parking lot.
  • Beach Play: My kids have grown up on this beach.  Its gentle slope and easy waves have provided for HOURS of boogie boarding, wave jumping and occasionally surfing.  Always nice knowing as well there is the Coast Guard Station located adjacent to Doran Beach should something go south during the day.

Upcoming Events:

  • Tide Pool Talk: November 3, 2018 11AM-12PM; See sea stars, hermit crabs, sea anemones and more.  Listen as a park naturalist walks you thru exploring animals found in our local tide pools.  Meet at the amphitheater the second Saturday of each month  in August, September and November. Free. Parking is $7 or free for Regional Parks members. For more information, call Kristina Stanton at (707) 539-2865.
  • Natural Exploration: Being a Sea Steward November 17, 2018 1PM-3PM: Junior Ranger Program at Doran Beach; Help with a beach cleanup and then explore the tide pools.

Lace up the sneakers or if your like me roll up the pant legs and barefoot it thru the sand and surf. Bring your pet. Forget poop bags? They are provided at the start of beach paths [pack it in..pack it out ;)].  Lots of canine enrichment to be found on the beach.  Every log, bit of seaweed or other vegetation and sea life that washes ashore gets a thorough sniffing from my Aussie Tony along with his anointing it in his own special way ;).  I’m frequently out on the 2 mile stretch up and back.  I start out from beach paths located in the Bodega Harbor South area.  Beach paths are super easy walking distance from our vacation homes. Out the door and to the sand is roughly 5 minutes.  Faster if you have 60lbs of eager fluff pulling you behind on a leash. Early in the day is best for less wind but quite often Nov-Feb afternoon/evenings absolutely BEAUTIFUL!  Lots of seals to watch, the occasional whale pods swimming in the inlet and occasionally horses as well trotting thru the waves.

Blustery day for paddle boarders at Bodega Bay’s Doran Beach

Tony was longing for some beach time after 18 days.  I think that was the longest dry spell of his 11 months.  We were on the beach by 11AM  walking [after home check-in’s] and it was breezy.  As typical the winds were all over the place but the temp was warm so still enjoyable.  Tony of course was in heaven and I could tell he missed running in the waves and digging in the sand.  This is his job after all. 

 

We saw a couple seals come close to the shoreline but gave them a wide berth.  Did not see any babies this time. Few birds in this distance.  I was surprised at the number of people on the beach until I remembered it was a holiday weekend (Columbus Day) and homes in the harbor book out on holidays. Lots of dogs which thrilled Tony…he’s always up to making a new friend.

I’d forgotten about the Blue Water Paddle Race and was happy to see we did not miss it.  We walked up just in time to see the Adult/pet race.  Quite a few racers with their dogs and surprisingly even a GOAT!  The goat seemed very unfazed and unlike many of the dogs maintained his sea legs staying upright on the board! It was a fun event to witness and I was happy to see so many families out enjoying the day.  The weather though at times windy was warm and sunny!  I plan on keeping this event on my calendar and hope to participate should there be a Blue Water Paddle Race 2019 :).  Tony would love it!…I think… 😉

Yes…this last picture is of the goat.  He seemed to be a good sport!

Blue Water Paddle Race 2018 in Bodega Bay

Blue Water Paddle Race 2018

 

I hope to be on hand to witness this event. I wish I had some practice to be a part of it as my pooch and I are always on the beach!  This will be the 7th Annual Blue Water Paddle Race at Doran Beach but first I’ve heard of it..probably because I’m not a paddle boarder.  I’ve always wanted to try stand up paddle boarding (SUP).  I’m especially keen on watching the Pet-with-Adult division race.  Looks like the overall event supports the Sonoma Coast Surfrider’s efforts to keep the beaches clean and local businesses have donated prizes towards a big raffle.

RACE DAY SCHEDULE FOR OCTOBER 6, 2018

8:30 am – Check-in and registration
9:45 am – Mandatory Skipper’s Meeting
10:00 am – Racing begins
Noonish – Lunch begins
1 – 2:30 pm – Raffle and awards

Please bring a reusable water bottle.  One of the goals of Surfrider is clean beaches and nothing messes up a beach like single use plastic.

More info at: https://paddleguru.com/races/SonomaCoastSurfriderBlueWaterPaddleRace2018

 

 

Sonoma County Regional Parks – Water Bark Park

Sonoma County Regional Parks includes many beautiful parks and beaches to hike and play throughout the county.  With more than 50 to choose from, there is always something fun going on.  Currently at Spring Lake Regional Park on weekends the Lagoon is closed to people but open to dogs on the weekends.  The Spring Lake Lagoon water has been treated and is tested weekly.  The entire Lagoon is fenced off and the entry/exit is by supervised gate making it a great place for the dogs to RUN free. Water Bark is a GREAT day for dogs to romp, swim and catch with other well-behaved dogs.  My family has been taking our pups for years.  We stay hours at a time and they just LOVE it.  Here is a link with more info: https://parks.sonomacounty.ca.gov/Play/Calendar/Water-Bark-Dog-Swim-2018-09-22/ Be sure and check dates.  Usually runs Sat/Sun thru Sept with occasional hour/date changes due to pre-scheduled events.

Local pet businesses sponsor providing biscuits, buckets of tennis balls and frisbee’s. There are even lifeguards patrolling the lake.

Families staying in our Pacific View home that allows dogs, great way to socialize your pet while family members tour Santa Rosa or walk the Spring Lake trail.  There are also water craft rentals as well for families with kids.  Spring Lake also runs a grill that sells drinks/burgers/hot dogs, etc.

The Sonoma County Regional Parks pass that I leave in both Pacific View and Gull Harbour will get you into Spring Lake Park bypassing the parking fee.  There is a small fee to enter the water bark lagoon area per pet.

California Coastal Cleanup Day

Join millions across this beautiful planet on Saturday, September 15, 2018 from 9AM-12PM Noon at the 34th Annual Coastal Cleanup Day!  Volunteer Appreciation Picnic: 1Pm-3PM. My kids & I have done this cleanup in the past and we are always amazed with the amount of debris dredged up from the sand.

Click here for information

Volunteers will be working Doran Park, Bird Walk Coastal Access Trail, Pinnacle Gulch Trail, Steelhead Beach Park, Cloverdale Park and Gualala Point Regional Park.

How to Register:

Sonoma County Regional Parks

Contact Volunteer Coordinator, John Ryan by email at john.ryan@sonoma-county.org or by phone at (707) 565-3356 to volunteer at the following parks in Sonoma:

Coastwalk registration links:

See you there!

Sonoma Canopy Tours FUN!

Sonoma Canopy Tours is located off the Northern California coast deep in the Redwood Forests of Occidental.  Experience a beautiful scenic tour involving multiple zip lines, sky bridges, a majestic spiral staircase, and a rappel to the forest floor.  Reservations required. Experience Day Flights and the new CHALLENGER flight! Enjoy the new Night Flight Tours on Saturday nights! Same great Forest Flight Course under the night sky…moon and stars!

Requirements:  each person must be at least 10 years of age and 70 lbs, the maximum weight is 250 pounds. Check out the link for additional info: Sonoma Canopy Tours.

Picture is my girlfriends and I after a fun filled morning riding the lines. The guides are great, funny and impart quite a bit of history of the area into the experience. Read google or yelp reviews. A fun experience for friends and/or families!

Feeding Frenzy of birds off Doran Beach

Our walk on Doran Beach today involved a great many birds up and down the beach.  There were two large areas where birds were feeding.  I’ve never seen so many birds in all my walks.  The beach was quite littered with seaweed and different sized crabs here and there.  I could see the birds diving into the water and bringing up small fish.  There was a feeding frenzy going on.  I walked the length of beach and back and they were still at it 90 minutes later.  Few fishing boats in the area seemed to be following the birds on/off.  It was fun to watch and the pup was enthralled.