A Great Hike in the Mount Diablo Foothills
This hike takes you from the Livorna Road Staging area into Walnut Creeks Shell Ridge Open Space and EBRPD Diablo Foothills Regional Park.
This hike gets you warmed up going up and down two small steep hills on the Foothills Trail. Turning left onto the Hazard hill trail you descend again to pick up the Franco Ranch Trail. Turn right and head up and around the hill until you see a road/trail turning right before the top of the hill. Go right and head East passing a sign that says 'Not a Trail'. Stay on this trail headed towards Mt Diablo, until it descend to a junction near Bullfrog Pond. Go around the pond on the Twin Ponds Loop Trail, and take the single track trail up the hill. This trail winds around the hill to the 'Twin Ponds', where you will take the Borges Ranch Trail(road) to the left between the two ponds. Note: The upper pond was dry, so YMMV. When the Borges Ranch Trail meets the Briones to Mount Diablo Trail, follow it to the right through the gate. Follow this dirt road up the hill past three trail junctions to your left. After cresting the hill continue on down the valley onto the Stonegate Trail, a portion of which is paved for the EBMUD water tank road. Leave the pavement where the trail turns right up and over the saddle to meet up with the Foothills Trail. Follow that up to ridge-line descending to the Hazard Hill intersection we passed through earlier. Now all you do is reverse the warm up section of our hike. ;-)
There may be water at the beginning of the Franco Ranch Trail (none when I hiked here)
EBRPD, 2012 Trails Challenge, Diablo foothills, Shell Ridge