Healthy Parks, Healthy People

Group of hikers in Golden Gate Park

In partnership with Healthy Parks, Healthy People Bay Area, a collaborative effort between 25 local agencies, SF Rec and Park presents its Healthy Parks Healthy People initiative. Explore our city’s natural areas while socializing with new friends, feeling fit, and finding new inspiration in our city’s native plants and wildlife.

All walks start at 10:00AM are Free, and require no pre-registration.

Stow Lake (First Saturday of Month) at the Boathouse in Golden Gate Park
Lake Merced (Second Saturday of Month) at the Boathouse 1 Harding Road
McLaren Park (Third Saturday of Month) at University & Mansell
Herons Head (Fourth Saturday of Month) at Jennings Street off Cargo way

Being outside in parks offers several benefits:

  • Helps maintain healthy bones, muscles, and joints
  • Introduces neighbors to each other
  • Provides opportunities for physical activity
  • Can reduce blood pressure in some people with hypertension
  • Improves the mood and reduces symptoms of anxiety and depression

Our professional RPD Guides will provide a short interpretive program designed specifically for each location. The staff will have first aid equipment and are certified in CPR.  Please remember to bring your water and sun protection.

Check local weather forecasts – Trail Walks will be canceled due to unsafe conditions and/or rain.

For more information email

Visit the Archives

Healthy Parks, Healthy People trail walks – McLaren Park – Cancelled

Aug 18, 2018

McLaren Park nature walk is cancelled July 21st. We hope to see you at our next Healthy Parks Healthy People trail walk at Herons Head on July 28th. For more information checkout … Continue reading

Free Nature Walk With Healthy Parks, Healthy People & Walk With a Doc

Aug 18, 2018
Walk with a Doc

SF Rec & Park is partnering with Walk with a Doc this Saturday at McLaren Park. Join us for an engaging talk with Dr. Andrew Oliver. This is your opportunity to ask … Continue reading

Healthy Parks, Healthy People trail walks – Heron’s Head Park

Aug 25, 2018
Group of hikers at Heron's Head Park

Walk a Wetland: Herons Head Park at Jennings Street off Cargo way, (Fourth Saturday of Month) 10:00am. Admire the San Francisco waterfront as we follow a short section of the Bay Trail. … Continue reading

Healthy Parks Healthy People trail walks – Stow Lake

Sep 1, 2018
A group of hikers listening to a guide

Walk in the Park: Stow Lake Boathouse in Golden Gate Park (First Saturday of Month) 10:00am. Start at the Stow Lake Boathouse for some light stretching followed by an easy-going walk around … Continue reading

Healthy Parks, Healthy People Nature Walks – Lake Merced

Sep 8, 2018
Girl picking a dandelion

Walk around a Lake: Lake Merced Boathouse at 1 Harding Park Road (Second Saturday of Month) 10:00am. This loop trail includes beautiful views of San Francisco’s wetlands providing opportunities to see bird … Continue reading

Lisa McHenry, B.S 

Lisa McHenry works for the San Francisco Recreation & Parks Department and can be found leading hikes for the Saturday “Healthy Parks Healthy People” program. She is a lifelong Bay Area resident and has an infectious enthusiasm for protecting and sharing this amazing part of the world. Lisa graduated Cum Laude from San Francisco State University with a degree in Recreation, Parks, and Tourism Administration. She is a Wilderness First Responder and in 2012 was a full scholarship recipient for the National Outdoor Leadership School (NOLS) expedition in Alaska.

Lisa McHenry on expedition in Alaska.

Lisa McHenry, hiking the Tonsina Glacier in Alaska.

Charley GauxDown

Charley discovered his love of the outdoors growing up in Yosemite and backpacking through the Sierra's. Once in San Francisco he found his way to the burlesque stage with his troupe The Bohemian Brethren. With a creative mind and a smile, he will take you on a relaxing adventure through our glorious city parks.

Charley flying the PACE flag at HPHP.

Charley GauxDown celebrating PACE with HPHP.

Dr. Andrew Oliver

Dr. Andrew Oliver is originally from the front range of the Rocky Mountains just outside of Denver, CO. He has found a home in the Bay Area that offers so much of the recreational opportunities he enjoyed growing up. He is board certified in Internal Medicine and Lifestyle Medicine and takes special interest in emphasizing prevention of disease and injury through healthy living. He is thrilled to help facilitate a partnership between the nonprofit organization Walk With A Doc and San Francisco’s Healthy Parks Healthy People program. He currently lives in Berkeley with his wife and two dogs.


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Dr. Andrew Oliver with Walk with a Doc.