Big Break Regional Shoreline

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Big Break Regional Shoreline
Nearest city Oakley, California
Operated by East Bay Regional Parks District
Open Daily 10 AM - 4 PM. Visitor center open only on weekends.

Big Break Regional Shoreline is a park in Oakley, California, part of the East Bay Regional Park District. The park features an $11 million, 5,000-square-foot Delta Visitor Center, which operates as a natural history museum, science laboratory, and staging area for paddling and hiking trips along the Sacramento River delta. The new visitor center opened October 13, 2012. A 30-by-50 model of the delta is also located at the park, as well as restored wetlands.[1] The center includes a 1,200 square feet (110 m2) interactive map of the Sacramento-San Joaquin delta area that shows visitors how water flows through the region.

Park name[edit]

The park is named for a break in the levee system that flooded an asparagus farm between the San Joaquin River and Dutch Slough in 1928.[2] The break formed a small bay along the river, near the area where fresh water from the river mixes with salt water from San Francisco Bay.[3]


According to the East Bay Regional Parks District, Big Break is habitat for at least 70 species of birds and several species of mammals. Birds include black rail, northern harrier, white-tailed kite, yellow-breasted chat, great blue heron, great egret, snowy egret, green heron and white-faced ibis. Mammals include beavers, muskrats, and river otters. It also shelters western pond turtles, a California Species of Special Concern.[3]


  • The Delta Discovery Experience includes covered outdoor educational areas for explaining the ecosystems and wildlife of the Delta region.
  • The park offers picnic areas and a small shaded amphitheater.
  • Fishing is a popular recreational activity. A 100 feet (30 m)-long fishing pier extends into the river from the park. Off-shore fishing is also popular. The chief varieties of fish include largemouth bass, striped bass, white catfish, bluegill, sunfish and sturgeon. Fishermen must have a California fishing license.
  • A beach launch is available for kayaks and canoes.
  • Big Break is a terminus for Big Break Regional Trail and Marsh Creek Regional Trail.[3]


The park is open daily from 10 AM until 4 PM. However, the Visitor Center is open only on weekends. The park is at 69 Big Break Road in Oakley. It can be reached by private vehicles from Main Street, and there is no fee for parking or admission. The park is generally wheelchair accessible. Dogs are permitted, except in marshy areas of the park.[3]

External links[edit]