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Best trails in Alum Rock Park

1,860 Reviews
Looking for a great trail in Alum Rock Park, California? AllTrails has 14 great hiking trails, trail running trails, mountain biking trails and more, with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers, and nature lovers like you. Ready for some activity? There are 8 moderate trails in Alum Rock Park ranging from 3 to 8.2 miles and from 298 to 2,030 feet above sea level. Start checking them out and you'll be out on the trail in no time!
Description

Alum Rock Park is located in the Diablo Range foothills east of San Jose. The park offers 13 miles of hiking trails and has a little something for everyone, from flat trails that allow access to Penitencia Creek to steeper hikes that climb the ridges of the South Rim Trail and the North Rim Trail. The canyon features a visitor center, ample picnic areas with picnic tables, a playground for kids, and volleyball courts. This park is a great day trip from Oakland, the San Francisco Bay Area, or the Santa Clara Valley, and downtown San Jose in the South Bay. There is a small possibility of mountain lion sightings, and you may also encounter poison oak or bobcats, but the majority of the flora and fauna are more benign. The rugged beauty of the foothills is well worth the trip.

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Map of trails in Alum Rock Park
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Top trails (14)
#1 - Alum Rock South Rim Trail
Alum Rock Park
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(513)
Length: 4.3 mi • Est. 2 h 15 m
Note: As of October 2020, the South Rim Switchbacks are closed indefinitely due to a damaged retaining wall. These switchbacks are on the eastern end of the loop on this page. You may still complete a loop by using the Sycamore Switchbacks instead. Please see the park website for more information: https://www.sanjoseca.gov/Home/Components/FacilityDirectory/FacilityDirectory/2088/2028 This is a great hot summer day hike, as this trail provides plenty of shade relief. Check out the remnants of the mineral spring spa. The trail starts paved, then turns to dirt pack. Coming out of the trail brings you along Alum Rock, and back to the trailhead. Some portions of the trails are shared with both bicycles and equestrians. There are some switchbacks, as noted on the map, that make the elevation climb much less strenuous. There is currently a fee of $6.00 for parking inside the park, and dogs are not allowed. Show more
#2 - Penitencia Creek Trail
Alum Rock Park
easyYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(297)
Length: 3.5 mi • Est. 1 h 35 m
A meandering 3 mile path alongside the Upper Penitencia River.Show more
#3 - Penitencia Creek Trail and North Rim Trail Loop
Alum Rock Park
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(153)
Length: 3.6 mi • Est. 1 h 45 m
#4 - Penetencia Creek, South Rim and Sycamore Switchback
Alum Rock Park
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(103)
Length: 3 mi • Est. 1 h 40 m
Note: As of October 2020, the South Rim Switchbacks on the eastern end of this loop are closed indefinitely due to an unstable retaining wall. This loop cannot be completed as drawn on this page. There are still many other trails open for hiking. Please see the park website for more information: https://www.sanjoseca.gov/Home/Components/FacilityDirectory/FacilityDirectory/2088/2028Show more
#5 - North Rim Trail to Boccardo Trail
Alum Rock Park
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(107)
Length: 8.2 mi • Est. 4 h 22 m
Hike to the backcountry just beyond the popular park on southeast edge of Silicon Valley. The distance from sprawling, suburban San Jose to wide-open mountain-lion country is remarkably short--if you start out from Alum Rock Park. This track will have you walking in the wilderness in about an hour. It starts at the parking lot of Alum Rock Park on the southeast corner of San Jose, climbs steeply to the hills just beyond the city limits, then descends to the section of the park that has drinking fountains, bathrooms and other civilized amenities. From there it's a flat stroll along the burbling Penitencia Creek back to your car. Trails on this hike: Penitencia Creek Trail, North Rim Trail, Weather Loop, Boccardo Trail, Todd Quick Trail, North Rim Trail, Penitencia Creek Trail. Best times to go: Spring for the wildflowers; winter for the smog-free views after a cleansing rain. Avoid in the summer, when lack of rain and arid terrain create a high risk of wildfires.Show more
#6 - Todd L. Quick Trail Loop
Alum Rock Park
easyYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(127)
Length: 2.5 mi • Est. 1 h 22 m
#7 - North Rim Trail to Eagle Rock
Alum Rock Park
easyYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(102)
Length: 1.9 mi • Est. 58 m
#8 - Eagle Rock Loop
Alum Rock Park
easyYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(94)
Length: 4.1 mi • Est. 2 h 14 m
#9 - North Rim Trail To Sierra Vista Point Loop
Alum Rock Park
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(64)
Length: 6 mi • Est. 3 h 23 m
#10 - Boccardo Loop Trail via Alum Rock Road
Alum Rock Park
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(125)
Length: 6 mi • Est. 3 h 30 m
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