What’s in a name? A lot, if you’re visiting Ed R. Levin County Park in Milpitas. From strolling among fields of wildflowers to walking along a scenic ridge with beautiful bay views, the Spring Valley and Los Coches loop trails here combine to make a hike that’s short (3 miles) and sweet.
Start at Spring Valley Pond, following the paved trail to the Spring Valley trailhead, near the horse arena. The path leads down through a valley of buttercups and past Los Coches Creek (here you’ll cross the road briefly to get to Los Coches Ridge Trail). To hike the ridge portion of this loop first, set off to the left and start climbing! It’s worth it.
You’re rewarded with views of hills rolling all the way out to the bay. Pass the picnic table and begin descending through oaks, back to the Los Coches Ridge trailhead.
After crossing the road back to the Spring Valley Trail, this time go left to complete the Spring Valley loop too. Make your way back through the grasslands and enjoy the final stroll past the pond.
BONUS: Though the hiking trails here do not allow dogs, Ed R. Levin has an expansive off-leash dog park.
Traveling on either I-680 or I-880, take the Calaveras Rd. exit in Milpitas. Drive east towards the foothills along Calaveras Rd. To reach the Spring Valley Pond area, continue along Calaveras Rd. past Downing Rd. and turn right into the park area to reach the ranger station, visitor center, and Spring Valley Pond. $6 vehicle entry fee. Beware of ticks; portions of the trail go through overgrown grasses. No dogs.