January Health: Winter Walks in Santa Clara County

It may be cold outside, but the Bay Area winter offers plenty of chances to get outdoors and explore. You probably have a few favorite nature activities already, like neighborhood walks or bird-watching from your kitchen window. If you're looking to travel a little farther - but not too far - this January, here are some local resources with trails and nature experiences for everyone!

The Midpeninsula Regional Open Space District

"Created in 1972, Midpen is an independent special district that helps plants, animals and people thrive throughout the greater Santa Cruz Mountains region by preserving a connected greenbelt of more than 65,000 acres of public open space. These diverse and scenic landscapes, from bay wetlands to redwood forests and coastal grasslands, host an incredible diversity of life, making our region one of the world’s biodiversity hotspots." - openspace.org, Who We Are

Be sure to visit their "Know Before You Go" page before visiting any of the preserves!

Open Space Authority, Santa Clara County

"The first priority of open space is the conservation value of the land. This includes such things as streams, forests, animals and plant life. Recreation facilities like trails, restrooms, and parking are designed so visitors can enjoy the natural world with little ecological impact. Parks provide more intensive recreation and offer highly developed facilities, including playing fields, motor sport tracks, playgrounds, picnic pavilions, and swimming pools. The emphasis is on providing a broad range of visitor activities." - Open Space Authority, FAQ

Discover more about the different preserves here!

Santa Clara County Parks

"We provide a sustainable system of diverse regional parks, trails and natural areas that connects people with the natural environment, supports healthy lifestyles, offering outstanding visitor experiences that renew the human spirit, while balancing recreation opportunities with the protection of natural, cultural, historic, and scenic resources." - Santa Clara County Parks, About Us

Plan your visit here!

And, to help you further in your planning, if you're interested in braving the beach or coast this winter check out A Wheelchair Rider's Guide to the California Coast, a project of Access Northern California. It can help you plan "outdoor adventures for wheelchair riders, parents pushing strollers, and others who need accessibility features such as a wide, fairly level and firm path of travel."

Speaking of planning, were you wondering what books to read to help you plan your outdoor explorations? Check out our list of local Bay Area Guidebooks and meanwhile...

(Don't) Get Lost In a Good Book - Nature Guides!

List created by MagicalLibraryCreature

Some general tips, tricks, and outdoor info for anyone and everyone looking to explore the world, and maybe record their findings along the way!

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