My sisters invited me to hike “their” trail on this gray Sunday morning. We parked at the southern most Light Rail Station in San Jose’s Almaden Valley. The Guadalupe River Trail begins just north of Almaden Lake, and this is where we started. The lake is a man made lake meant to alleviate flooding along the creeks that run down from the Sierra Azul mountains and through the Almaden Valley. The City of San Jose operates and maintains both the park and the paved trail at Almaden Lake and the Los Alamitos Trail. http://www.sanjoseca.gov/facilities/Facility/Details/2 One of the first things I noticed about this area was the variety of birds along the Lake and trail. I saw dozens of Canadian Geese in the lake and along the large grassy picnic areas that border the lake.
I also saw a few Snowy Egrets in the shallow areas along the lake and in Los Alamitos Creek, which is located just south of the Lake. I must admit, I had no idea what the name of these birds were until I ran across one of the excellent informational signs that are along the trail!
After traveling south beyond the lake, the trail becomes the Los Alamitos Creek Trail. This trail is also paved and was busy with hikers, joggers, and bicyclists. In places, the trail has sections that were for “equestians only.” Although, I didn’t see any horses during our entire hike. Even though this is a hike through San Jose’s urban area, the trail along Los Alamitos Creek is green with Oak and Bay trees and native plants. There are several “trailheads” along the way with smaller trails that lead off to residential neighborhoods which are generally only about several hundred feet to the east of the trail. We reached the turn around point at just over the 3 mile mark. As we headed back north, the sun broke through the clouds and rewarded us with a beautiful view of the lake, the Santa Cruz Mountains, and Mt. Umunhum!
I feel very fortunate to live in a large city that has such easy access to parks, trails, and open spaces to enjoy nature! I would rate our 6.5 mile up and back as easy. The trail is fairly flat and is easily accessible with many paved parking areas. Trails: Almaden Lake / Los Alamitos Creek.
That’s 13 hikes and 80.4 miles! 27 hikes and 119.6.1 miles to go. I had a great time hiking with my sisters…and, have honored their request of “no pictures of us!” Until next time, if you are looking for me, I’m over the hill.