“A fairly easy, broad, well-maintained trail through beautiful hills with views of the San Francisco South Bay Area.”
— Joan Pendleton
River/Creek · Views
Wide, well-maintained trail with gentle grades. This loop trail is short enough for children, yet long enough and primitive enough to introduce children to the great outdoors and "wilderness."
A hike on beautiful, grass and wooded San Francisco South Bay Area hills. There are expansive views of the populated Bay Area on one side, and unpopulated, pristine, natural scenery on the other side.
The trail is broad and well maintained, ideal for families and groups, as well as runners and solo hikers.
This loop starts on the Senador Mine Trail
. The trailhead near the Quicksilver Park entrance, is heavily wooded with a stream going through it that attracts wildlife, such as deer. From the trailhead, the trail follows the stream through a heavily wooded area. It then begins to gently climb, leaving the woods behind, as it emerges into grass hills. Stands of trees dot the grass hills. Views of the San Francisco South Bay unfold as one climbs. The trail flattens out at the top and then descends through more heavily wooded grass hills. The view of the heavily populated Bay Area disappears, and one is now in pristine, undeveloped territory. This is an amazing contrast in a place so close to a highly urbanized metropolis.
The trail transitions to the Guadalupe Trail
. The way continues through unpopulated wooded, grass hill countryside, before it then begins another moderate climb. It passes Guadalupe Reservoir as it climbs to its highest point. There, it levels out for a short while before it gradually descends along the Mine Hill Trail
back to the trailhead where it started.
Flora & Fauna
Grass hills and wooded areas. Deer.
History & Background
Along the Senador Mine Trail
section, it passes the site of the old Senador Mine where ruins of its Scott Furnace dust bins can be seen. Senador Mine was a cinnabar (mercury ore) mine that was opened in 1863. It was actively mined until about 1936. Around 1915, a furnace was built at this mine to process the cinnabar into mercury. One use of mercury is to extract gold from its ore. Thus, cinnabar mining and processing into mercury, was important during the Gold Rush.