Alum Park is open all year. Hours are 8:00 a.m. until one-half hour after sunset. $6 parking fees are collected on weekends and holidays, and daily from mid-June through Labor Day (free if parking just at the main entrance and hiking in.) Pets are not permitted in the park.
As noted on park signs here in Alum Rock or any Bay Area parks, please be careful not to poke around anywhere where rattlesnakes may be hiding. Always use caution, perhaps carry hiking sticks and teach the kids to learn where not to play/hunt and be safe.
Alum Rock Park is California's first and oldest municipal park. Nestled within the Alum Rock Canyon in the foothills of the Diablo Range, the Park's 720 acres of natural, rugged beauty, provide visitors with many leisure outdoor activities including hiking, horseback riding, bicycling, family and group picnicking, and of course just relaxing.
There are approximately 13 miles of trails including six miles of horse trails and three miles of bicycle trails. Hikers are welcome on all trails, while equestrians and cyclists are requested to use designated trails only.
Alum Rock Park did not obtain its present name until about the turn of the century. The park, which was founded in 1872, was simply referred to as the "reservation." The name Alum Rock was derived from a huge rock that was believed to contain a high percentage of alum.
From 1890 to 1932, the park was a nationally known health spa with 27 mineral springs containing seven different minerals. Without a doubt, this was the park's most popular period. For a quarter, you could ride from downtown San José to the park on the Alum Rock Steam Railroad. The park charmed its visitors with mineral baths, an indoor swimming pool, a tea garden, restaurant and dance pavilion.
During the period between World War II and the early 1960s thousands of visitors came to the park from the booming Santa Clara Valley. The park became so overcrowded that the facilities could no longer be properly maintained, and the plant and animal communities were severely endangered.
As a result of this over-use, the park underwent a change from a facility with a multitude of uses to a more natural setting emphasizing family outdoor activities that result in reduced impact on the Park's natural environment.
When hiking, allow yourself plenty of time to return before darkness.
Location is in an obvious place and we have provided convenient seating to log your cache (well ok, it was already there!) Room for Travel Bugs and such. The location provides screening from the road but please be careful to camouflage the cache, disturbing the area as little as possible to preserve it’s location from any passer by.