Table Mountain Trail Loop via Charcoal and Table Mountain Fire Roads

MODERATE 0 reviews

Table Mountain Trail Loop via Charcoal and Table Mountain Fire Roads is a 5.8 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Los Gatos, California that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, nature trips, and birding and is accessible year-round.

DISTANCE
5.8 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
1,092 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Loop

birding

hiking

nature trips

walking

views

wild flowers

The day started out foggy and cool, but it didn't last long once you hit Santa Clara County. But not a big deal, this hike through the Upper Stevens Creek area is well-shaded and fun any time of year. I started on Skyline and dropped down table mountain trail, a designated hiker-only trail. At least that's what it's labeled on the map -- but clearly the mountain bikers love it. But it was a somewhat holiday (July 5th) and I only saw one small group of bikers on the trail, so not a big deal. The walk down is meandering and shady and full of a lot of diversions. You drop about 800 feet of vertical and when you hit the spring you know you're close to the clearing ahead. I looped around the table mountain fire road -- which was worth it because I saw a lot of critters. Then slogged it back up to the top on Charcoal Road. And a slog it was. In 1.4 miles you're doing near 1000 feet of vertical, so strap on the heart monitor and just slog it. Mountain bikes are supposed to go 'up' only on this road, so you don't have to watch for screaming maniacs. But at the end of my hike I ran across a group of bikers loitering at the top and they asked me, "Hey, man, you see anyone else on that trail?" Clearly plotting something devious. But it was nice that they asked. Bugs, Bugs, Bugs Has anyone else experience a massive proliferation of bugs lately. I always brag to my East Coast friends about the lack of bugs on my hikes, but lately it seems like I've been swarmed. Today I had to hike with my mouth closed -- and yet still snorted a few up my nose. What gives? Is it the area? The time of year? Or have I just been lucky in the past?