If you love Bay Area hikes and revel in the paranormal, plan a trip to one of these haunted hiking trails in Santa Clara County. From ghosts to cryptids, there are many things awaiting hikers as they explore these trails. At times, these entities take the initiative, inviting those wandering close by and claiming their lives in the process.
So, don’t leave on your trip before taking all precautions necessary to ward off more than just mosquitos.
Before you explore the paranormal activity awaiting you on your next south bay hiking trip, be forewarned: When you seek ghouls and ghosts…they will seek you.
Finally, share your own experiences and brushes with the paranormal on these trails.
We’d love to know if something or someone new decided to join the current spooks in terrorizing the visitors of these areas.
10 Most Haunted Hiking Trails in Santa Clara County
Table of Contents
- 1 #10) China Hole, Morgan Hill
- 2 #9) The Santa Teresa Spring Trail, San Jose
- 3 #8) Los Gatos Creek Trail, Campbell
- 4 #7) Skyline-to-the-Sea Trail, Los Gatos
- 5 #6) Senador Mine Trail, San Jose
- 6 #5) San Tomas Aquino Creek Trail, Saratoga
- 7 #4) Marsh Road, Milpitas
- 8 #3) Coyote Creek Trail, Morgan Hill
- 9 #2) Heron Trail, Mount Hamilton
- 10 #1) Sprig Trail, Gilroy
- 11 Get Directions To All 10 Haunted Hiking Trails in Santa Clara County
- 12 Your Next Step
#10) China Hole, Morgan Hill
Located in Henry W. Coe State Park, China Hole is one of the more demanding South Bay hiking trails.
It’s also bound to get your heart racing as you walk closer to the creek.
Legend has it that a woman was drowned there in the late 1800s by her jealous lover after she tried to break their relationship off.
Now, she seeks vengeance by dragging cheating men into the creek if they look directly into it.
Their bodies would be discovered days later elsewhere, bruised and shredded as if she didn’t believe that drowning them was enough of a punishment.
#9) The Santa Teresa Spring Trail, San Jose
Legend has it that a giant hand pulled her underwater, drowning her.
Some say that she never passed on, returning home to hang her parents from the rafters of their barn.
However, their deaths weren’t enough, which is why she’s out to catch hikers and ‘punish’ them the same way. The surrounding area is equally creepy.
Skeletons have been discovered in a nearby Indian burial ground and apparitions are seen at the Bernal Intermediate School.
#8) Los Gatos Creek Trail, Campbell
The Los Gatos Creek Trail is heavily used, but many tend to stop once they reach downtown Los Gatos. This is because the trail passes through Forbes Mill.
Those who have ventured in the building reports footsteps and other sounds despite being completely alone there.
A woman was terrified when she saw eyes look down on her after she was locked there.
Some hikers have experienced similar instances passing by Forbes Mill via Los Gatos Creek Trail.
In addition to feeling watched, invisible entities have chased them off the grounds by running behind them or throwing pebbles at them.
Only a few hikers have seen apparitions. All of them agree, though, that they were very hostile and wouldn’t dare come across them again.
#7) Skyline-to-the-Sea Trail, Los Gatos
A 55.5-mile loop trail that runs near Los Gatos, Skyline-to-the-Sea is reportedly haunted by the lost souls of children who were abducted and killed there.
Hiking in the Bay Area can be hair-raising, as some have experienced first hand. Hikers have found broken and mutilated dolls hidden in the woods.
While no one knows who or what killed them, someone wrote that he believes it’s a malevolent presence as he heard “children sobbing pitifully, as if trapped somewhere deep down where human hands can’t get to them.”
Another hiker exploring the Skyline-to-the-Sea trail near Los Gatos at night saw small orbs of light flying.
However, his foot crushed the head of a doll, making the orbs disappear.
He was then pushed by a smoke-like entity and growled at. “It wasn’t human, I’ll tell you that,” he wrote.
#6) Senador Mine Trail, San Jose
Senador Mine Trail in Almaden Quicksilver County Park is home to a California Gold Rush ghost who’s still attached to the New Almaden Mines.
There are several stories as to how he died.
Some say he was crushed while trying to steal mercury from the mines while others claim he was killed by bandits when he came to the mines to replenish his stores.
Angry at his fate while alive, the miner will attack anyone who walks close to the mines.
A hiker saw his friend pushed to the ground by an unseen force. When he went close by to check on him, his face was smashed as if a large rock had fallen on it.
Even the coroner didn’t believe that the body was only pushed to the ground because of the bruises!
#5) San Tomas Aquino Creek Trail, Saratoga
San Tomas Aquinas Creek trail is a paved route that’s 5-miles long along its namesake waterway.
If you’re taking a hike there, don’t look at the creek for too long. Rumor has it that a beautiful, pale woman will rise from the water, signaling those who see her towards the water.
Some say that she tempts hikers with her naked body while others claim that she guides them towards the water through mind control.
Some believe the reason that none of her victims have been discovered in San Tomas Aquinas Creek is because the waters tend to take the bodies elsewhere.
#4) Marsh Road, Milpitas
Marsh Road is one of the infamous places in Milpitas as that’s where Marcy Conrad was killed.
The 14-year-old high school student was killed by 16-year-old Anthony Jacques Broussard in the area. He kept her body there for several days, showing it off to at least 10 of his friends.
Though Broussard has been incarcerated since, Marcy roams the area seeking to punish the living
It’s believed the number of accidents and unexplained paranormal activity in her hunting grounds is the reason authorities have sealed the area off in the past.
So, don’t seek her unless you seek trouble.
#3) Coyote Creek Trail, Morgan Hill
One of many scenic hikes in the Bay Area, Coyote Creek Trail made it on this list of haunted hiking trails because of the ghosts of those were killed by the clawed monster there.
The first two victims were a woman and child back in 1909.
Isola Kennedy and her student Earl Wilson were severely injured by what others presumed was a mountain lion during her walk through Coyote Creek Parkway.
Though they both died in their beds later, their souls as well as those of other victims of the clawed monster tend to return to the trail, possibly to warn others or just watch as another soul joins them.
#2) Heron Trail, Mount Hamilton
If you’re up for a night hike, try Heron Trail for a night of thrills.
Accessible through Quimby Road, it’s one of the popular Bay Area hiking trails where the Quimby Jogger has been seen. This ghostly figure is usually seen once it gets dark, but most hikers have spotted him after midnight.
What makes him more mysterious is that there aren’t any records of joggers dying on Quimby Road or Heron Trail!
Whatever you do, don’t try catching up to him. Many hikers claim that he would turn and peer right into their souls before going back to his nightly routine.
Some say that they got sick afterwards, suffering from high fever that travels all the way to their core.
#1) Sprig Trail, Gilroy
While traveling on Sprig Trail in Mount Madonna County Park, you’re bound to feel as if you’re being watched.
You probably are as Sara Miller and her father are haunting the area. Henry Miller owned the 13,000 acres that are part of the park.
His daughter, Sarah, died when she was eight years old because her horse tripped, threw her off, and fell on her.
Though the Santa Clara County authorities exhumed her body from the mountain and transferred it to Colma, Sarah still rides her horse around the mountain or walks the trails at night in a frilly dress.
Another hiker claims that she heard a young girl scream and reported it to the park rangers.
They didn’t take action, though, because they knew they wouldn’t find anything.
Get Directions To All 10 Haunted Hiking Trails in Santa Clara County
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Put your hiking boots on and get ready to encounter ghosts, ghouls, and other mysterious entities on these haunted South Bay hikes.
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