Nature Walk in San Jose: Montgomery Hill Park
Montgomery Hill Park in San Jose was named in honor of John Montgomery, a professor and a pioneer of paragliding, in 1967. It is a 60-acre undeveloped open space nesting in Evergreen Foothill right next to Evergreen Community College. One side of the park reaches its way into Evergreen residential area providing convenient access to the residents while the rest of the perimeter resting by Yerba Buena road. It is very hilly with most of the trees concentrated on the outskirt of the park by Falls Creek Drive. Those trees help hide the park from the street. Once you are inside the park, you will still see a few trees spaced around inside the park but don't depend on them to provide you with much shade. There are a few unpaved hiking/walking trails leading you up and down the hills across large grassy fields along both side of the trails. During the summer and fall the grass gets very dry and in winter and spring the park is blanketed with green. The trails can get muddy sometimes after rain. Montgomery Hill Park is open from sunrise to one hour after sunset. If walking uphills is too much for you, there is a mile long flat loop right after you enter the park through Falls Creek Drive entrance where most of the birds and other small animals gather. If you go there in the morning, you will hear birds singing and might have a chance to see them as well.
Things to Do in Montgomery Hill Park San Jose
People use this park for variety reasons:
Paragliding: Because the park is so open and with very few trees around, it is perfect for paragliders to enjoy and spend a day there.
Walking: Since Montgomery Hill Park is formed by different small hills, it is ideal for exercising. It will definitely make you work up a sweat and increase your heartbeat no matter what. Dogs are allowed in this park, so you can enjoy a nice walk with your pets.
Running: Since Montgomery Hill Park is very close to a local middle school, students use this park as one of their sites to practice running. So don't be surprised when suddenly there is a large group of teenagers chasing after you.
Biking: Although I don't have the guts to bring my bike there, I have seen people bravely bike up the steep hill. If you are up for a challenge like that, go for it.
Fly kites: Bring your kids and fly kites there. Just be careful when running downhill.
Fly remote control airplanes: If you have a remote control airplane, Montgomery Hill park is ideal place to give your airplane a wild spin.
Getaways: Because this park is tucked away in a quiet neighborhood with large open fields adjacent to it, it is a perfect place for a getaway.
Enjoying the View: When you walk up to the top of the hills, you will be rewarded with spectacular views, especially during sunsets. You can also able to see the city lights after the sunset.
Nature hunt: During late winters and early springs, you will be greeted by different wild flowers standing in the green grass. Butterflies and birds will also enjoy and have fun there. Pay attention as you walk in this park, you will be surprised on what else you might find. We have seen stink bugs, squirrels and mice.
Picnic: There is a picnic area with few picnic tables near the parking lot of Evergreen Community College. There are trees by the tables to provide some shade for visitors.
Sunset in Montgomery Hill Park San Jose CAClick thumbnail to view full-size
Entrances, Parkings, and Public Restrooms
There are two main entrances to Montgomery Hill Park in San Jose. One is right by the parking lot of Evergreen Valley College and you need to pay for the parking. The other one is on Falls Creek Drive and there are some free street parking. There is also a small side entrance across the street by HGST - Hitachi Global Storage Technologies. But there is no parking on this side of the street.
No public Restrooms in this park. You can use restrooms that are next to the tennis courts at Evergreen Valley College during school days. Or you can go down to the shopping center at Yerba Buena road and San Felipe road. There are lots of restaurants there if you get hungry and want some food.
Here are few things you should consider when you visit this park:
- Wear comfortable shoes, preferably not new shoes unless you don't might them getting dirty.
- Bring a bottle of water because there isn't any drinking fountains.
- There won't be much shade to protect you from the sun, so wear a hat or bring an umbrella.
- Bring a camera to capture the beauty of this natural park.
- Use the bathroom before entering the park.