Dog-Friendly Lucas Valley Open Space

Lucas Valley Open Space

Lucas Valley Rd. & Loma Alta Fire Rd.
Nicasio, California 94946
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Local Phone: (415) 473-2816

Marin County Parks Open Space Leash Policy: Dogs on leash are welcome to enjoy trails. Dogs are allowed off-leash under strict voice control on fire protection roads. Please follow posted rules.

Marin County Parks Open Space Preserve

The highlight of this preserve is the Big Rock Trail, a multiple-use trail that begins at the crest of Lucas Valley Road (at the ”Big Rock”), and eases its way up to the Big Rock Ridge Fire Road. It connects with the Loma Alta Trail that ascends the southern half of the valley.

Portions of both the Big Rock Trail and the fire road along the ridge are trail easements that cross private property, so pay heed to all trail signs posted along the way.

The summit of Big Rock Ridge at 1895 feet is the second highest point in Marin County (after Mount Tamalpais), and views from the top are spectacular.

An alternate route between the valley floor and the ridge is the incredibly steep Luiz Fire Road, but one trip up (or down) this old road will make you truly appreciate the new trail for its beauty and gentle grade.

From Highway 101 in San Rafael, take the exit for Lucas Valley Road west approximately 5.5 miles (look for the big rock). The trailhead is on the north side of Lucas Valley Road.

• Parking: Side of the road.
• Fee: None.
• Water: Bring your own.
• Best time of the year to hike: Spring, winter can get muddy and summer is hot with limited shade.
• Degree of difficulty: Moderate
• Distance: 3.7 miles
• Hours of operation: Sunrise to sunset

Help us keep this trail beautiful and dog-friendly:
• Always follow the posted rules as they may have changed
• If in off-leash area, keep your dog under voice command
• Respect and protect wildlife and habitats
• Pack in and pack out, leaving only paw prints

Wide Open Spaces
The Marin County Open Space District, which turns 40 this year, was born from a heroic movement to preserve natural lands and contain urban sprawl. Today it administers 34 preserves—all but one of them dog-friendly—totaling more than 20,000 acres and providing Bay Area residents and visitors with many ways to play. Four-legged hikers enjoy the rare privilege of accompanying their humans off-leash on the fire roads in the preserves, and while tethers are required on other trails, none of the paths are off limits to canines.  more »

Boy and dog in Bon Tempe MeadowMore than 60,000 dogs live in Marin, according to estimates from the Marin Humane Society. Open space is the draw for residents and visitors alike, with tens of thousands of acres available for on- and off-leash activities. The Marin County Open Space District alone manages 34 preserves totaling 15,000 acres open to public recreation. At all but 10, well-behaved dogs under voice control can accompany you unleashed on fire prevention roads. more »
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