While driving back north, I found Woodward Park. It’s a fun stop in Fresno with a little bit of everything. From a BMX bike course to miles of trails to a Japanese Garden, you have it all.
History of Woodward Park:
The birth came when a long time Fresno resident Ralph Woodward, gave a portion of his estate in 1968 to provide a regional park and bird sanctuary. Originally it was 235 acres and now has grown to include 300 acres. It’s the largest regional park in the Central Valley.
About Woodward Park:
It costs $5 to enter or $3 if you have a senior citizen. Different rates are depending on holidays too.
There are plenty of things to do at Woodward Park, including:
- Hiking and biking trails (home to both a 5k/10k cross country course). When complete, there will be over 22 miles of trails between Highway 99 and the Friant Dam. You can see a park map here.
- Covered and Uncovered Picnic Tables.
- Six Large Shelters at Woodward Park that can accommodate 200+ people each (obviously be safe in COVID times)
- Three children’s playgrounds
- BMX Course
- Mountain Bike Skills Progression Park at the top of Woodward Park
- Disk Golf
- 3500 seat open-air Rotary Amphitheater
- Tranquil Shinzen Japanese Garden includes a teahouse, Zen Environment, pond filled with koi, and Double Moon Bridge. Not sure if Woodward Park is the only regional park in Central Valley to have this.
As you can see, Woodward Park has something for everyone. I didn’t do enough research before getting there, and when I finally arrived, I was amazed to see just how busy it was. It felt like I was running in a large city. (I later realized multiple cross country teams were practicing as well as a small road race).
Exploring Woodward was a lot of fun, and I got a nice run out of it. If I’m back in Fresno, it’s definitely a nice park that I’ll go back to.
You can see more hikes here.
Questions for you:
Do you have a favorite local park?
Fresno locals: What is your favorite cross country or dirt trail?