Hike No 13 – Almaden Lake Regional Park – Lake Trail / Alamitos Creek Trail

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 thCanadian Geese Lake Almaden Hike No 13e 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.  Snowy Egret over Lake Almaden Hike No 13

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.  Alamitos Creek Hike No 13Even 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. Lake Almaden / Mt. Umunhum Hike No 13 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.

Los Alamitos Creek Trail Hike No 13That’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.

Hike No. 6 – March 3, 2013 – Calero Creek Trail / County Park

After another tough hike (No. 5), I am mixing it up again with Hike No. 6.  The Calero Creek Trail is another trail in the City of San Jose’s very good trail network.  The trailhead is located near the end of Los Alamitos Creek Trail in San Jose’s Almaden Valley.  This trail is also part of the Bay Area Ridge Trail which is a system of over 340 miles of trails that ring the Bay Area.

http://www.ridgetrail.org/  Calero Creek part of Bay Area Ridge Trail

The Calero Creek Trail crosses through the rural southern edge of San Jose.  The trail is easy and travels through pasture land, through IBM’s Almaden Research facility land (although the buildings are not visible from the trail), over a smaller creek, and finishes up by climbing a few hundred feet  near Santa Teresa County Park.  The first couple of miles are on well marked, paved paths…the last couple of miles are well marked – but, are dirt paths.  The 4.3 mile out and back was perfect hike for me…it would be a great hike for families.

All Trails lead over the hill Hike No 6

Critters watching me pass on by…

Calero Creek Trail Critters!

This trail links up with several outstanding trails in Santa Teresa County Park.  Yes, I will have to try out these trails on another day!

That’s 6 hikes and 35.9 total miles…34 hikes and 164.1 miles to go!

Hike No. 4 – Febuary 16, 2013 – Las Alamitos / Calero Creek Trails

After the “thighmaster” of the Limekiln Trail, I decided to take it a little easy on Hike No. 4!  Just a short drive into San Jose’s Almaden Valley, and I was at the trail head.  The Los Alamitos trail runs along…Los Alamitos Creek, which meanders through a residential section of San Jose.  http://www.sanjoseca.gov/index.aspx?nid=2871

Winter ending on Calero Creek

Winter is beginning to end and many of the trees are just starting to blossom along this well maintained trail…

Los Alamitos Trail Sign Hike No 4

This easy 4.7 mile hike is mostly flat.  This trail in San Jose is really well marked, maintained, and has plenty of parking on gravel lots.  The trail is part of a large network of trails…this trail links up with the Calero Creek trail which I will cover in a later post.

That’s 4 hikes and 21.7 miles….36 hikes and 178.3 miles to go!