The Almaden Quicksilver county park has over four thousand acres enclosed within its property. There are 37 miles of hiking trails available for explorers, including trails for horse back riders and mountain bikers. All trails within the park are pet friendly with a leash requirement. You can view historic mining structures throughout the park which give insight into the history of mercury mines in New Almaden.
There are three entrances to the park, Mocking Bird Hill, Wood Road and the Hacienda entrance. For the #PixinParks 2020 photo challenge you will be entering the park through the Mocking Bird Hill entrance. There are no parking fees collected at this entrance.
This is a 4.52 looped trail rated as moderate for its elevation gain, a rating I agree with. This trail has some shade cover but I suggest bringing a hat and wearing sunscreen. As you can tell by my photograph I visited the park later in the year during the Covid-19 pandemic. This park is very popular with fellow explorers so remember to be courteous and wear your face cover.
I will be honest with you, readers. I have done this exact hike before, many many times. So much so that when I saw this hike listed on the #PixinParks 2020 roster I could not believe I had never taken a photo at the designated photo op. I hiked this trail on one of the good air quality days in early October, enjoying the sunshine and chirping of the many squirrels who call the park home.
Things to Do
- Hike the Historic Trail: Fifteen informational trail markings were created as an eagle project by the Boy Scouts of troop 466. This historic trail takes explorers through the 145 year history of the Almaden Quicksilver mines.
- Visit the Hacienda Cemetery: Take a stroll through the Hacienda Cemetery in New Almaden, the final resting place of many Almaden Quicksilver miners. With the permission of the private land owners, visitors may look for the final resting place of Bert Barrett's left arm.
- Play like a Miner, Activities for kids: Enjoy these fun learning activities for kids provided by the Santa Clara County Parks department. These activities teach children about mercury mining, what miners ate and how to make a blanket fort resembling a mining tunnel.