Hike at five different county parks over the next six months and you’ll be a winner. Well, at least a winner in the first-ever “Trails Challenge” sponsored by Sonoma County Regional Parks. Here’s the information:
The Trails Challenge is an invitation to explore the Regional Parks by hiking five or more trails featured in the Trails Challenge guidebook anytime between June and November. If you complete all five hikes and turn in a trails log, you can receive a free Trails Challenge water bottle or other gift and be entered into drawings for Regional Park memberships.
If you’re new to the parks, the Sonoma County Trails Challenge is an opportunity to get comfortable on the trails and discover the benefits of outdoor fitness. If you’re already a hiker, the Trails Challenge is another way to keep active and learn a little more about the county parks. Free and designed for all fitness levels, the Trails Challenge is a self-guided program to complete on your schedule. Hike on your own, with your dog, with family, with friends or with co-workers. (Cyclists and equestrians are invited to take the Trails Challenge too.)
Health professionals agree that adopting a walking routine is one of the simplest, most effective changes you can make to improve our health. Walking at least 30 minutes a day can help with weight loss, lessen risks for diabetes, heart disease, osteoporosis and certain cancers and improve moods and sleep. In addition, studies show that people who exercise outdoors are more likely to feel satisfied with their workout and more likely to repeat it.
The Regional Parks have hikes for all abilities on more than 140 miles of trails throughout Sonoma County. The new Trails Challenge guidebook rates featured hikes by intensity – easy, moderate or strenuous – and includes advice on how best to enjoy the trails, key facts about the parks, detailed trail notes, maps, and driving directions.
To participate in the Trails Challenge:
1. Go to sonomacountyparks.org and download the trails guide. (Limited print editions are available at Regional Parks’ office at 2300 County Center Drive in Santa Rosa and at the staffed entrances of Spring Lake and Ragle parks starting June 2.)
2. Review the guidebook and select five hikes to complete before Nov. 30.
3. When you finish all five, fill out and submit the trails log available at sonomacountyparks.org.
4. Receive your Trails Challenge water bottle or other free gift (while supplies last) and be entered into drawings for park memberships.
5. If you’re having fun, don’t stop at five hikes. Pick another five trails and complete the Trails Challenge again.
The Trails Challenge is sponsored by Regional Parks and Sonoma County Health Services. For more details, go to the Trails Challenge page at sonomacountyparks.org or call Regional Parks at (707) 565-2041.