Directions to Berkeley Marina
BY WATERLatitude and Longitude: The entrance channel to the Berkeley Marina is at approx. 37-52.0 x 122-19.3
The Harbor mouth is protected by two breakwaters: the rip-rap (rock) breakwater that is oriented north-south, directly to windward (west) of the harbor mouth, and the sheet pile (concrete) breakwater, oriented southwest-northeast, to the north of the rip-rap breakwater. Both of these breakwaters are detached from shore, leaving three possible routes into the marina. While all three routes are used at various times, the main channel and deepest water is to the south of the rip-rap breakwater, the southernmost of the three possible routes in. Controlling water depth, from an April 2000 survey, is 6.7 feet at the zero tide level datum (mean lower low water).
Note that the day mark near the abandoned Berkeley Pier approximately 1.6 miles from the marina is a green marker, and is to the north of the deepest water.
To enter at night, the easiest approach is from the north side of the abandoned portion of the Berkeley Pier. Only the easternmost 0.5 miles of the pier is lighted. If you approach from the south, the break between the lighted portion and the remaining 2.2 miles of the pier is navigable, but none of the other openings in the pier are known to be safe. Water depth in the navigable break varies from year to year, and may be slightly less than in the marina entrance channel.
Once you see the lights from the lighted portion of the pier, you will be able to establish that you are north of the abandoned portion (the entire pier is straight, as shown on the chart). The row of low bright lights on shore just north of the east end of the pier is on "Skates on the Bay" restaurant, a structure built out over the water just north of the east end of the pier. Aim for these lights until you see the flashing green light to the left of your course, on the south end of the rip-rap breakwater. (The quick flashing white light is in the middle of the rip-rap breakwater, and the red flashing light is on the north end.) Stay at least 50 meters off the lighted portion of the fishing pier to avoid some shallow spots left by dredging operations in 1989.
Round the south end of the breakwater leaving the green flasher to port, and as you enter the harbor the Berkeley Yacht Club will be on your right, on the south side of the entrance channel. The fuel dock and Olympic Circle Sailing Club are on the north side of the harbor to your left.
There is ample maneuvering room for preparing to dock or for lowering sails in the central part of the marina basin. If you need to sail up to a dock in a larger boat without power and are unfamiliar with the marina, the fuel dock immediately across from the yacht club on the north side of the entrance channel is usually the best option.
If you have arranged to tie up at the Berkeley Yacht Club, the guest dock is along the east side of the building, with good protection from the prevailing westerly seabreeze.
The harbormaster's office is near the K dock gate, in the middle of the south side of the marina basin. There are usually plenty of transient berths available, but the office might be closed after business hours. There is almost always plenty of space at the fuel dock across the channel on the north side, but this is inconvenient to the marina office (approx. 10 minute walk around the harbor) and you must be ready to move when the fuel dock opens in the morning.
Pass Seabreeze Market on your left. Proceed west to the Marina entrance, where you can either make a slight turn to the left to stay on University Avenue, or turn 90 degrees to the right. A right turn will take you to docks A-I, the Radisson Hotel, the Hornblower docks, the launching ramp, Berkeley Marine Center boatyard, Olympic Circle Sailing Club, Cesar Chavez Park and the kite flying area.
Bearing left will take you to Cal Adventures, Cal Sailing Club, the sailboard launch area, the small boat hoists, and the Shorebird Park Nature Center on the left, and docks J-M, the Marina Office, and the Berkeley Marina Sports Center (for fishing boat charters and fishing gear) on the right. The Municipal Fishing Pier and the Chinese Dog Warrior sculpture are at the extreme west end of University Avenue. At the pier, turn left for Hs. Lordships restaurant, turn right for docks N and O, Skates on the Bay restaurant, and the Berkeley Yacht Club.
Car break-ins are sometimes a problem, so try not to leave valuable items
anywhere in your car.
Follow the signs to Frontage Road and then to Fourth Street. You will end up making three right turns taking you to the westbound freeway overpass, as described in more detail in the next three paragraphs.
The off-ramp itself can be confusing and is poorly marked. Immediately after exiting to the right, the off-ramp splits. Stay to the right at the first split, following the first sign to Frontage Rd. Do not take the left-most branch of the off-ramp that goes uphill to the University Avenue overpass.
A few feet later the off-ramp splits again. Both branches go down to street level. This time take the one to the left, following the signs to Frontage Rd. and Fourth Street. (Don't panic if you get this wrong. Either of the two incorrect branches of the off-ramp will lead to eastbound University Ave. If this happens, make a U-turn at 6th or 7th and pick up the directions again at the overpass.)
After the off-ramp, continue one short block north on Frontage Road under the University Ave. overpass, and take the first right turn about one block past the overpass onto Hearst, following the Fourth Street sign. Go about five blocks east, across the tracks and across Fourth Street, to the traffic light at 6th. Turn right on 6th, go south one block, then turn right onto University Ave., heading west.
Continue west on the overpass towards the Bay, over the railroad tracks and the freeway.
Pass Seabreeze Market on your left. Keep going to the Marina entrance, where U. Ave. makes a slight turn to the left and then straightens again. Following the road to the left will lead to the Cal Sailing Club, Cal Adventures, the Shorebird Nature Center, the Marina Office, Skates and Hs. Lordships Restaurants, and Berkeley Yacht Club. Turning right will go to the north side of the Marina and the Doubletree hotel, Cesar Chavez Park, Olympic Circle Sailing School, and the Berkeley Marine Center.
Car break-ins are sometimes a problem, so do not leave valuable items anywhere in the car.
Busses run approx. every 30 minutes between approx. 7 am and 8 pm every day. Call AC Transit at 510-839-2881 for bus schedule and routing details, or follow the link to the web based transit route planner.
BY RAIL (and bus or taxi)
The Richmond line of Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) intersects the #9 bus line in downtown Berkeley. Get off at the Downtown Berkeley BART station (not at North Berkeley) and use the main exit (the escalator faces west as you leave the station). Walk east across Shattuck Avenue to the bus stop on the south-east corner of Shattuck and Center. The #9 bus will be going north on Shattuck Avenue. (The bus stop is directly in front of a store called "Games of Berkeley," offering superb browsing while you wait.)
If you have arranged for someone to pick you up from the BART station by car, the North Berkeley BART station is slightly closer to the marina but is in a residential area with no commercial activity. (You can catch the #9 bus from North Berkeley BART by walking a few blocks north along Sacramento to Hopkins). Be sure to clarify which station you are waiting at if you are being picked up by car.
Another option is to get off BART at the downtwon Berkeley station and take the 51 bus to the Berkeley Amtrak station. From there it is about a 15 minute walk to the Marina. Taxis are generally available near the main entrance to the downtown Berkeley and North Berkeley BART stations. Taxi fare to the Marina is about $9.00 and a 15-20% tip is customary.
There is an Amtrak stop in west
Berkeley, underneath the University Ave. overpass just east of the
freeway. From here it's about a 15 minute walk to the Marina, or a short taxi
ride. There are 12 trains per day in each direction stopping at
Jack London Square, Emeryville, Richmond, and points north and South.
To find it, ride west on Addison Street (parallel to and one block south of University Avenue) almost all the way to the end, to the lake at Aquatic Park. Ride a short distance around the north end of the lake to the overpass ramp.
If you're not able to carry your bike up a long flight of stairs, you can also get to frontage road on Gilman Street, about 3/4 mile to the north. A new bicycle path was added to this section of Frontage Rd. in 1997, and this is now the preferred approach from the north.
The bike/pedestrian route is probably not safe after dark. If you're at the Marina for an activity that ends late, ask someone to give you and your bike a ride to the east side of the overpass.