Image: Grant Lake ©Brandy Maldonado
Located in the east of the Santa Clara Valley, the Grant County Park offers landscape views of the foothills. At the park you will see vast grasslands peppered with large oak trees and cows grazing lazily. Enjoy peaceful hikes as you take in all nature has to offer.
Joseph D. Grant County Park is a 10,882 acre open space resource that allows various activities year around. These activities include mountain biking, hiking, horseback riding, camping, and warm water fishing. There are over 50 miles of trails available to hikers, horseback riders and leashed dogs. Over 75% of park trails are marked as mountain bike friendly. Discover more local mountain bike friendly parks by checking out these books at your local San Jose Public Library:
Image: Grant County Park ©Brandy Maldonado
If you do this hike, it is important to remember that there are grazing cattle in parts of the park. I went on this hike in early April, when cows were just starting to have their calves. Many herds become territorial and aggressive when welcoming new calves. It is important to give herds a wide berth or just go back the way you came if you cannot safely pass a herd. I write this because I, not so smartly was wearing headphones on this hike and didn't hear a mama cow approach me. Luckily I escaped with only minor scrapes from jumping over the cattle gate, but I could have gotten seriously hurt. Be aware of your surroundings, don't wear headphones and be sure to respect the boundaries of wildlife in the area (I'm sorry mama cow, didn't mean to upset you!).
I had quite the detour around the park but I was able to find the photo op for the challenge. This hike took me about an hour as I stopped to watch bullfrogs, butterflies and the heron at the lake. There was quite a bit of mud from spring showers, but overall this is a hike worth doing again!
In 1990, son of a rich San Francisco merchant, Joseph D. Grant purchased land previously owned by the Bernal Family. This land was once part of the Rancho Canada Pala Mexican land grant. Grant used his land for cattle grazing (which still occurs today), hunting and recreational activities. Joseph D. Grant's family owned the land after his passing in 1942, selling parcels as time went on. in 1975, the Santa Clara County purchased the remaining land to create a park, the Joseph D. Grant County park.
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Special thanks to our friends at the Santa Clara County Parks Department for making this challenge available for Santa Clara County residents.