Henry Coe State Park

By Carol at 7:01 am on Friday, April 18, 2008

Last week, we spent one perfect day at the largest state park in Northern California, Henry Coe. The hills above the town of Morgan Hill were still green and covered with poppies and lupine. The road was treacherous, narrow with steep drop-offs.

Our hike started at the park headquarters, at around 2,200 ft. elevation. We took the Corral Trail and returned on the Forest Trail.

park headquarters

The park headquarters are housed in some of the original ranch buildings.

near the trail head

A view of the valley near the trail head.


We had not gone far when we all heard a loud noise like liquid fizzing. The first of our group yelled “rattlesnake”, as the rather large snake slithered off of the trail and into the trailside grass. It remained coiled and continued to rattle as we passed. I stood a foot above it on a rock to take its picture. The head can be seen but tail is out of the picture. This is the first aggressive rattlesnake we’ve ever seen on a hike. Usually they take off when they become aware of us.

new leaves on oaks

Many of the oaks were covered in new leaves, like this one.

Larry reads trail guide

Larry reads a trail guide which describes interesting natural features along the way.

end of trail

Someone has thoughtfully placed a picnic table under the oaks, for our tired hikers to take respite. We had already hiked about 4.5 miles.

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