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Black Diamond Mines Regional Preserve

Black Diamond Mines Regional Preserve
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General Information

Description - g district is within the Preserve's nearly 5,717 acres. The area is an ideal location for hiking, picnicking and nature study. Naturalists conduct a variety of programs relating the Preserve's natural and historic resources.

Although little remains of the coal mining communities, a historic cemetery serves as a monument to the lives of the former residents. Buried here are children who died in epidemics, women who died in childbirth, and men who died in mining disasters. Although over 10 nationalities resided in the mining area, Rose Hill Cemetery was a Protestant burial ground, and many of the people buried here were Welsh

Attractions - The Greathouse Visitor Center, open Saturdays and Sundays from March through the end of November, is located in an underground chamber excavated in the mid-1920s. Hours are from 10 AM to 4:30 PM. Admission is free. The center contains displays, photographs, videos, brochures and artifacts depicting the park's coal and sand mining eras.

Tour participants take a 400-foot walk back into the mine to see mine workings, the office of the shifter (mine boss), ore chutes, and ancient geological features. Mine hours are from 10 AM to 4 PM Saturdays and Sundays from March through the end of November. Because of its size and the need for safety, visitors will be taken in only on guided tours ($), with a limit of 15 persons per tour (minimum age seven years). Tickets can be purchased at the Greathouse Visitor Center on a space-available basis.

Recreation - Visitors to Black Diamond Mines enjoy historical exhibits, camping, group camping, hiking, wildlife watching, and the identification of varied plant and wildflower species.

Climate - Climate in the San Francisco Bay area varies greatly with elevation and the amount of coastal influence. Areas with more coastal influence experience moderate temperatures year round with fog likely from June through mid-August. Plan your coastal visit in the late summer or fall to ensure the best conditions for viewing the scenery. Also, occasional clear days between winter and spring storms are incomparable. Areas further inland experience greater temperature extremes, with relatively cooler winters and hot summers. Inland areas often receive frost on winter nights. As throughout most of California most of the precipitation comes in the winter months, with April through October normally very dry.

Location - Black Diamond is located in Contra Costa County, south of Pittsburg and Antioch. Take Highway 4 to the Somersville Road exit in Antioch, then drive south (toward the hills) on Somersville Road to the Preserve entrance.

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Recreation Opportunities
Activity Remarks On Site
ICON Backpacking Stewartville Backpack Camp
ICON Camping Reservations Required
ICON Hiking & Walking Trail Network
ICON Plant Identification Black Locust, Pepper Tree, Almond, Eucalyptus, Tree of Heaven
ICON Wildflower Identification Globe Lily, Helianthella, Manzanita
ICON Viewing Interpretive Exhibits Greathouse Visitor Center
ICON Viewing Wildlife Deer, Bobcat, Fox

More Information

Additional Information:
East Bay Regional Park District - Picnic, hike, camp, fish, ride a bike, ride a horse, and explore nature at a Regional Park in the San Francisco East Bay area.

East Bay Regional Park District - Official agency website.


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