Today’s Thursday Picture was taken on the Flume Trail at St. Joseph’s Hill Open Space Preserve in the Santa Cruz Mountains.
Located just minutes from downtown Los Gatos, California, this preserve sees heavy use by hikers, bikers and families. I typically park at Vasona Park and hike the Los Gatos Creek Trail up to St. Joseph’s Hill. There are some steep sections of trail…so, hiking here can be a good workout. However the scenery so close to an urban area makes the sweat well worth it!
My hike: A nice 7 mile loop with 650 feet of total elevation gain. Park at Vasona Lake County Park. Take the Los Gatos Creek Trail south to the pedestrian bridge at Church St. Cross the bridge and hike through the parking lot past the historic Forbes Mill. The Los Gatos Creek East Trail head is located just to the east of Forbes Mill. Follow this trail that runs parallel to Los Gatos Creek for about 1/2 mile. The trail will end with a short climb up a hill that leads you to the Town Of Los Gatos’ Novitiate Park. This park borders St. Joseph’s Hill OSP and the Flume Trail head. Head south on the Flume Trail for a little over .5 mile and continue to the end of this trail where it intersects the Jones Trail. Continue south on the Jones Trail for a mile where you will exit the OSP and walk north along Alma Bridge Rd. for .5 mile to Lexington Dam. Hike down the paved trail that traverses the north side of the dam where it connects back up to the Los Gatos Creek Trail. Follow the Los Gatos Creek Trail for about 3 miles back to Vasona County Park! This was hike number 16 of my quest on the 52 hike challenge!
Where are you hiking this weekend?
If you’re looking for me, I’m over the hill.