If you ever find yourself in need to go hiking in Sonoma with your dog then plan ahead and sign up for the Kunde Family Winery Dog Hike! It's a beautiful hike at any time of the year but last Saturday's hike in the crisp air with the mist coming off of the hills and over the vineyard was spectacular. We've done the hike in June as well, but there is something in the fall air (ok, maybe it was the amazing wine they serve while you are hiking) that made this hike so relaxing and fun.
The hike starts off at the main entrance and heads up into the vineyards where you can still see grapes hanging off of the vines. (map here) Every so often you stop to take in the acres of vineyards, and the dogs get to jump into one of the ponds to cool off and have some fun of their own while you get to taste one of the Kunde wines made from the vines row you are standing right next to!
Each stop is topped off with an education of the sustainable practices of the estate, how and when each varietal is deemed ready for picking (now this is literally a science of sugar), and the rich history behind each variety planted or an event that happened on the estate.
The dogs really enjoyed being off leash, and if you have a water dog then this is definitely the hike for you! This was Cody's first adventure out with a large pack of dogs and overall he did pretty well until a few of the bigger guys started playing. Yes, he is the fun police, and he gets all wired up and barking whenever other dogs want to play so he had to have a few time-outs. With 1800+ acres in the winery we didn't want to let him off leash knowing his preference for squirrel removal, which makes me wonder if a few dachshunds could help keep things in check. I think Cody would volunteer for a free bottle or two!
What I love about this hike is that you meet so many interesting people from all over the Bay area and as you can see above the dogs tend to make some friends on the hike as well! Everyone has a unique and heart warming story about how they met their dog and how long they have been together. I love that we also saw people that we met last June so it was fun to catch up and see what they've been up to the past year.
I have more photos to share, but too much for one post so stick around and check back in for more tomorrow!