On the Arastradero Trail

Arastradero Preserve horse & rider.

Arastradero Preserve is a preserve located in and managed by the city of Palo Alto, California. Consisting of rolling savanna grassland hills and evergreen forests, the preserve varies in elevation from 275 feet (84 m) in the northeast to 775 feet (236 m) in the southwest. The preserve contains an abundance of wildlife, including deer, bobcats, coyotes, and many species of birds. The Pearson-Arastradero Preserve has 10.25 miles (16.50 km) of trails for hiking, biking and horseback riding.

A lifelong horse lover, I never get tired of photographing them.  One of the best places in the Bay Area to find equine photo ops is in the Pearson-Arastradero Open Space Preserve, located in Palo Alto, CA.

There are several trails of varying difficulty within the preserve, making it a favorite nature destination for hikers, horseback riders, dog walkers (dogs must be on leash), and cyclists. Beyond horses (and of course, their riders), you will see an abundance of wildlife, including lizards, birds, wild flowers and the occasional coyote and mountain lion.  You will also see many bird houses in the trees, part of the Cavity Nesters Recovery Program of the Santa Clara Valley Audubon Society. Lastly, a warning: Lots of Poison Oak along the trails, so be careful not to let pets or kids wander off the trail.

With easy access off Highway 280 at the Page Mill exit, Arastradero Preserve is just a short drive from the South Bay. The address and number to check on trail closures (during the rainy season) are below:

1530 Arastradero Road, 1/4 mile north of Page Mill Road.
Phone: 650-329-2423.

The photos in this entry were taken March 21, 2010 during our hiking/photo session. For a photo slideshow from this outing, check out my Arastradero Preserve photo album on Picasa Web.
Arastradero Preserve 2

Arastradero Preserve 3


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