Bear Creek Redwoods Open Space Preserve is a 3.6 mile lightly trafficked loop trail located near Los Gatos, California that features a lake and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Horses are also able to use this trail.
Permit only open space park off Bear Creek Road near Los Gatos Site of abandoned Alma College, which has some buildings still sitting behind chain link fence, with remnants of old structures elsewhere evidenced by brickwork. Right outside of very urban center. Requires permit so you are likely to be the only one there, though the permit is free and easy to get. Easiest hikes are through the college and to the left, past the stables. More strenuous go to the right. You'll see ponds and a creek. The trail I took this day was to the right. You can easily combine trails for an all day hike.
This was a mellow hike with only a couple of other people on it. You could hear the noise of Hwy 17 part of the time which was a little distracting and the first section was very muddy.
Julie & Keith B.
For the permit
Because you need to get a permit (easy), there won't be many (or any) other hikers. It's an interesting place, with an abandoned college and a couple of ponds. Stick with the area bounded by Bear Creek, 17, and the pond that is NOT at the entry/ trail head for the most interested hiking. Hilly but not too.