The Berkeley Hills
are a range of the Pacific Coast Ranges
that overlook the northeast side of the valley
that surrounds San Francisco Bay
. They were previously called the "Contra Costa Range/Hills" (from the original Spanish Sierra de la Contra Costa
), but with the establishment of Berkeley
and the University of California
, the current usage was applied by geographers and gazetteers.
Tectonically, the Berkeley Hills are bounded by the major Hayward Fault
along their western base, and the minor Wildcat Fault
on their eastern side. The highest peaks are Vollmer Peak (elevation 1,905 feet/581m), Grizzly Peak
(elevation 1,754 feet/535 m) and Round Top
(elevation 1,761 feet/537m), an extinct volcano, and William Rust Summit
Vollmer Peak was named for the first police chief of the City of Berkeley, August Vollmer
. It was formerly known as "Bald Peak".
Much of the western slope of the Berkeley Hills is occupied by densely-built residential neighborhoods of mostly single family homes, except on the land of the University of California. Most of the streets are narrow and many tend to follow the contours of the land, although there are at least three streets, Marin Avenue, Moeser Lane, and Potrero Avenue, which go directly up toward the ridgeline. Other roads to the ridgeline wind their way up the various canyons. Near the ridgeline and generally following its contour are Grizzly Peak and Skyline Blvds.
The eastern slope of... Read More