John Nicholas Trail

MODERATE 5 reviews
#8 of 13 trails in

John Nicholas Trail is a 9.8 mile lightly trafficked out and back trail located near Saratoga, California that features a lake and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from September until May. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

9.8 miles
1,564 feet
Out & Back

dogs on leash


mountain biking

nature trips

trail running




From the south (Black Rd.) mostly wooded, flat trail along a dirt service road. From the north (Sanborn Rd.) wooded, but all uphill hike on service road along creek canyon. Lake is usually low, but nice place for a picnic. Some nice flowers around dam during spring/summer, and usually see whitetail deer around, as well as the waterfowl on the lake. Some ruins of an old farm/ranch house or mill, and some old farm equipment just north of the dam. They are also building some trail which connects with Skyline trail at Sunnyvale Mountain (about 6 miles of mostly ascending hike.)

3 months ago

Lots of mountain bikers. Hot and dry.

Thursday, August 03, 2017

John NIcholas Trail is a popular mountain bike trail, covering 5.3 miles from Sunnyvale Mountain Parking Lot (on Skyline Blvd) to Black Road parking lot. Instead of doing an out & back hike, I created a loop by completing the hike on Black Road & Skyline Blvd, both of which are scenic and have only light road traffic. John NIcholas trail goes through shaded oak woodlands, redwoods, interesting rock formations and by Lake Ranch reservoir.

Detailed Blog:

3 months ago

8 months ago

Sunday, January 11, 2015