Explore the meadows and rolling hills of open space tucked just beyond busy Palo Alto. This area is popular with equestrians, mountain bikers, and even kite fliers, and has a lake and a pond.
- Beautiful rolling grassy hills.
- This is a great place to see rabbits, ground squirrels, mice, coyotes, and birds.
- Trek out to the pond to see ducks and other water fowl, frogs, snails, and plenty of water insects.
- This is a great place for wildflowers in the Spring.
- This area is popular with equestrians, and you can see horses often at the parking lot or along the trail to the pond.
- Arastradero has every kind of trail – rolling hills, flat paths, single-track, and wide fire road.
- This is a popular destination for mountain bikers.
- Dogs allowed!
- The nature center, bathrooms, and benches near the parking lot are clean, modern, and well maintained.
- There are twilight hikes here throughout the year, provided by park rangers. See the City of Palo Alto Webpage on Arastradero for more information. Hikes finish up by the time gates to the park close, and begin from varying locations.
- City of Palo Alto has a lot of great information about the park, plants, and animals at their Preserve Website (see below).
- Stay on the trail to avoid ticks.
- Watch out for poison oak, particularly by the creek, lake, or pond.
- Be wary of mountain bikers, particularly if you stray from the trail recommendations below.
- This is mountain lion habitat.
- Coyote encounters have occurred here, which are of some concern to staff, as the coyotes have not shied away from people. See the City of Palo Alto Webpage on Arastradero for information on the location and dates of these encounters.
- Rain leads to closure of some trails. See the City of Palo Alto Webpage for more information.
The nature center adjacent to the parking lot is handicapped accessible. The trail to the pond is not accessible to wheelchairs that are not outfitted with wheels meant for gravel or dirt roads. All other trails are too steep or narrow for wheelchairs.
- Recommended Routes