Water Trail LogoSan Francisco Bay Area Water Trail
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White wave



Two outrigger canoe boats with the Golden Gate Bridge and sunset in the background

Outrigger canoers, by Steph Siaris

Share Your Passion

As we realize what a wonderful resource our Bay is, many of us become motivated to help protect it and enact change.

The goals of the Water Trail call for programs to encourage stewardship. The Water Trail program is still in the early development phases, but in the future there will be opportunities to get involved. Stewardship programs that could be part of the Water Trail include trailhead stewards for care of launch sites, trailhead-based docent programs, or even kayak-based docent programs.

Volunteer at your local shoreline park, preserve, or refuge. Or become a member of a nonprofit that protects your watershed. Here are a few links to get you started, although there are many more organizations to partner with.

Bay Access

The vision to establish the Water Trail started with this dedicated group of non-motorized small boat users who wanted to ensure a future for the Bay that included adequate launching and landing facilities for human-powered boats and beachable sail craft. Their vision includes providing safe and enjoyable boating experiences, encouraging opportunities for stewardship, developing overnight accommodations (including camping), and broadening the demographic of people who have access to water-based recreational experiences.
see website

Kayakers celebrating in Richmond

Kayakers in Richmond

California State Parks Foundation

California State Parks Foundation is the only statewide independent nonprofit organization dedicated to protecting, enhancing and advocating for California’s magnificent state parks. They have volunteer opportunities through their Park Champions program.
see website

Don Edwards San Francisco Bay National Wildlife Refuge

The Don Edwards San Francisco Bay National Wildlife Refuge is dedicated to preserving and enhancing wildlife habitat, protecting migratory birds, protecting threatened and endangered species, and providing opportunities for wildlife-oriented recreation and nature study. They have volunteer opportunities in interpretation, environmental education, resource management, and maintenance.
see website

East Bay Regional Park District

The East Bay Regional Park District spans Alameda and Contra Costa counties and offers outdoor recreation in 65 parks. They have volunteer programs in public safety, interpretation, environmental protection and habitat and species preservation.
see website

Environmental Volunteers

Environmental Volunteers run the EcoCenter located in a historic paddlewheel boat building in the Palo Alto Baylands. The EcoCenter offers free environmental education through public learning programs, events, a digital touchscreen science exhibit, Marsh Cam, green building tour, and more. They also offer canoeing nature programs and have many volunteer opportunities.
see website

Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy

Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy partners with the National Park Service and Presidio Trust to support Golden Gate National Parks and they offer a variety of volunteer opportunities.
see website

Friends of the Napa River

Friends of the Napa River is dedicated to the conservation and restoration of the Napa River watershed.
see website

Group of boaters from Petaluma Small Craft Center on Petaluma River

Boaters on the Petaluma River by Scott Manchester

Friends of the Petaluma River

Friends of the Petaluma River is dedicated to celebrating and conserving the Petaluma River, its wetlands and wildlife.
see website

Petaluma Small Craft Center

Petaluma Small Craft Center is an association of non-motorized boating groups and individuals dedicated to getting people on the Petaluma River. Help people fall in love with boating by volunteering with their summer and youth programs and annual “Day on the River” event.
see website

Save the Bay

Save the Bay is a nonprofit organization working exclusively to protect, restore and celebrate San Francisco Bay. They have many volunteer opportunities located throughout the Bay.
see website