Jan 19, 2013 · 10:15 AM
Ranch Lake Trail
Weather.com predicts nice sunny weather in the 6os for this Saturday, so we're hoping to hit the trails with an easy start-up hike. This is no more than 4 miles round trip, though you can explore off into surrounding woods if you'd like more. We reach a small but charming lake with wildlife with hills around. The drive there from Los Gatos takes us through redwoods.
Bring something to share for a pot luck picnic at the table at the far end of the lake.
We'll depart our Sunnyvale home at 9:30; stop at Oka Road off Hwy. 17 in Los Gatos around 9:45 if there are additional riders. [Park ALONG Oka Road -- parking lots are private but street parking is fine] and wave frenetically if you see people who look like they are looking for you. Normally we don't encourage caravaning, but we'd be open to it since Ranch Lake doesn't have an exact street address.
We hope to arrive at the trailhead at 10:15 but hang on if we're not quite there yet. There is only one trail down, so if you are early and start without us or late and need to catch up, we should be easy to find. Parking at the trailhead is VERY limited so carpooling is encouraged.
The trail down to Ranch Lake is wide; it may be just a bit muddy in places but shouldn't be bad, based on past experience. Ranch Lake is in Sanborn Park but on the back side. Trail slopes very gently but continually down; on the way back up you find yourself getting more of a workout than you would have expected, although the incline is very gradual. This is a great hike for newbies or people wanting to get back in shape; if you want more of a workout you can zoom ahead faster and explore more trails in the woods.