Folks, how would you like to hike and bike on a 1000 acre operating cattle ranch about 20 minutes from downtown San Jose? There are miles of dirt roads, some smooth, some not, some relatively flat, some really not. And for the extremists out there; How steep do you think cow trails can get? If that is not steep enough. Have you ever slid up or down a wild boar trail? Can you dodge the critters? Can they dodge you?



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Miles and miles...The ranch is in the foothills Southeast of San Jose. Rolling golden hills, oak studded and covered. Shady canyons following seasonal creeks. The terrain ranges from gentle to perhaps double diamond in skiing terminology. A lovely Picnic and Swimming area, No lifeguards. This area may be reserved by large groups. A very limited number of Fishermen may also reserve to catch dinner from a 4 acre lake with catfish, bass and crappie.

If you have been to a similar setup we would appreciate any information. I will stage a couple of orientation rides in late June consisting of 10 to 15 riders. If folks wish to camp, this will be pre-opening and the campsites will not be ready. The sanitary facilities are outhouse style. There is running water, piped and creek for cooking and cleaning. We suggest you bring drinking water. BBQ's may be on a share basis. These rides will be a feasibility study. All who partake in these exploratory weekends will be asked to fill out a short questionnaire and/or outline their thoughts on how to make the experience pleasant and safe for the riders, livestock, wild animals and especially the hillsides.

As we all know Mountain Biking is a high risk sport. There will be areas that bikers may not travel in unless it is an emergency. This is a working ranch and these areas contain machinery and operations that could make a very angry mama cow appear enticing. Not that the critters are a worry. They are more afraid of us than we need to be of them. Something as large as a person on a bike, moving so silently is interpreted as a predator by most of the woodland critters, and to a point, the cows. The cows are becoming more accustomed to them.

The cows have promised to leave you alone as long as you leave them alone. Please remember these are not pets and are not dairy cows. They are beef cows and as such do not have much contact with people. Please use good judgement, have a person a ways in front at a controlled speed who can warn the others of cows. If bikes at speed meet cows on a narrow road or trail somebody or some bovine is going to get hurt. I'm not sure if a vet show up fee or ambulance is more expensive. I prefer not to find out. Please do not annoy, chase or get too close to them. And NEVER separate, nor keep separated a mother and her baby. You wouldn't like it and neither do they. The primary difference is that they are 1300 to 1500 lbs. of 4X4 muscle. Even the cute little ones can crack your ribs, I speak from experience. Think about it.


E-Mail Lost Valley Ranch We do have an emergency phone, medical facilities are within 30 minutes. There are people who live here who will assist you. We will provide maps and on these rides will take a walk or ride to identify the area and which areas may not be ridden in.



Copyright 1999 Lost Valley Ranch
Last modified: April 18, 2002