La Honda Creek Open Space Preserve

Location: Redwood City, San Mateo County
Hike Date: 2017, June 21, Wednesday, 10:40 am
Hike Stats: 3.3 miles, 1.5 hours, 400 feet elevation gain

View at the Vista Point “The panoramic view of the seemingly never-ending valleys leading to the coast is spectacular. On a clear day, visibility extends to the ocean.” (text source: mrosd)

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El Corte de Madera Creek Open Space Preserve

Location: Redwood City, San Mateo County
Hike Date: 2017, June 28, Wednesday, 10:10 am
Hike Stats: 6.4 miles, 2.5 hours, 1375 feet elevation gain

Repeat Visit: 2019, May 4, Saturday

Methuselah Tree “The panoramic view of the seemingly never-ending valleys leading to the coast is spectacular. On a clear day, visibility extends to the ocean.” (text source: mrosd)

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Castle Rock State Park, Saratoga Gap Trail

Location: Los Gatos, Santa Clara County
Hike Date: 2017, June 10, Saturday
Hike Stats
: 5.4 miles, 4 hours, 1700 feet

Previous Visit: 2015, October 4, Sunday

One of the Sandstone Outcrops on the Saratoga Gap Trail

Exquisite sandstone formations and sculpted caves are among the treasured features within this park’s vast wilderness.


For my previous trip to this state park in 2015, check out this post.
For other trails in Castle Rock State Park, check out this post on Skyline to the Sea Trail.

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Castle Rock State Park, Skyline-to-the-Sea Trail

Location: Los Gatos, Santa Clara County
Hike Date: 2017, June 1, Thursday
Hike Stats:
5.33 miles, 2 hours 25 minutes, 1079 feet elevation gain

Summit Meadow Trail

Attractive lichen-covered boulders and sandstone rock outcrops add to the scenic value of this area.


For other routes in Castle Rock State Park, see Hike in Castle Rock State Park – Saratoga Gap Trail.

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Lower Crystal Springs Reservoir

Location: San Mateo County
Out-and-Back: Sawyer Camp Trail
Hike Date: 2016, December 12
Hike Stats:
6:00 miles, 2 hours
Repeat Visit
: 2019, September 23, Monday

The Lower Crystal Springs Reservoir in San Mateo was a great find. The paved Sawyer Camp Trail along the length of the reservoir provides a great place to walk, run, cycle, or indulge in a leisurely stroll.

Sawyer Camp Trail

The day was perfect – bright and sunny (cold in the shadows) – drawing in moderate crowds. More families with kids started showing up later, after sundown. No pets are allowed on this trail.

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Castle Rock State Park

Location: Los Gatos, Santa Clara County
Hike Date: 2015, October 4
Hike Stats
: 5.9 miles, 3.5 hours, 2108 feet elevation gain

Repeat Visit: 2017, June 10

Castle Rock State Park
Castle Rock State Park is a place of abundant solitude, wilderness, high cliffs, and sweeping vistas. Unique patterns on weathered sandstone, lush forests, and stream-fed canyons make up the park’s diverse features. – https://www.parks.ca.gov/
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Skyline Ridge Open Space Preserve, La Honda, Southern San Mateo County

Hike Date: Saturday, September 12, 2015
4.6 miles, 2 hours, 780 feet
(Repeat visits: Sunday, June 19, 2016 || Saturday, June 24, 2017)

This is our second most-favorite-hike from 2015, the first one being at Big Basin Redwoods State Park. Even though it was a dull, gloomy, gray day, the panoramic views of the Santa Cruz mountains and the vast expanse of forests that stretched out onto the horizon were spellbinding.

Ipiwa Trail in Skyline Ridge Open Space Preserve

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Big Basin Redwoods State Park

Location: Boulder Creek, Santa Cruz County
Hike Date
: 2015, September 6, Sunday
* 8.7 miles, 3.5 hours, 2287 feet
* Dool Trail Sunset Trail – Timms Creek Trail – Skyline-to-the-Sea Trail

Repeat Visit
: 2016, July 30, Saturday (Sleep Late and Hike Meetup)
* 9.5 miles, 5.5 hours
* Berry Creek Falls Loop: Dool Trail – Sunset Trail – Berry Creek Falls Trail – Skyline-to-the-Sea Trail – Sunset Trail – Dool Trail

Big Basin Redwoods State Park
“These trees, because of their size and antiquity, were among the natural wonders of the world and should be saved for posterity.” –Andrew P. Hill, 1899 (Source: Big Basin Redwoods State Park official brochure)
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Stevens Creek County Park

Location: Cupertino, Santa Clara County
Hike Date: 2015, August 29

We were quite late to start with the hike – 5:30 P.M.! To add to the delay, we were unable to find a parking spot close to the trailhead; we drove up and down the Stevens Creek Canyon Rd to find a designated parking place. We finally ended up parking on the side of the road just next to the trailhead.

While driving south the first time, we went past the very scenic Stevens Creek Reservoir. We decided to stop here on our second round and enjoy the panoramic views while there was still ample light.

Stevens Creek Reservoir
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