Trail rating: Easy
Trail length: 1 mile to Deer Hollow Farm
Trail width: Varies from 5 feet to very wide (service road)
Trail surface and type: Dirt and paved, Network
Trail Slope: 5° slope right before Deer Hollow Farm
Trail Cross-slope: 3° cross-slope in some parts of the service road
Trail usage: Hiking, bicycles, dogs, wheelchairs, and occasional vehicle on service road
Handicap Parking: 5 spots at lower parking area, and 4 more handicap spots in the upper parking lots but there is a steep path coming down to lower hiking trail area
Accessible restrooms: Yes in lower parking area
Cellular Service signal strength is good
One of the reasons I like going to Rancho San Antonio Open Space Preserve is because you’re able to hike through various types of scenery as you make your way to the Deer Hollow Farm. You start your journey on the Permanente Creek Trail, which is a wide dirt trail that runs next to a meadow and rolling hill just beyond. You’ll come to a junction and if you want to add .8 miles to your hike, you can turn right and take the Deer Meadow Trail. Back at the junction, you’ll cross the road and go straight onto the Lower Meadow Trail. It gets a little bumpy on parts of this dirt trail so I found it easier to use the service road that runs along next to it. The Lower Meadow Trail eventually crosses the service road and you can continue back onto the trail but it does get narrow, which can be a problem when other hikers are sharing the trail with you. So when it’s crowded, I prefer to stay on the service road. Both the Lower Meadow Trail and the service road will bring you to the 160 year-old historic farm. Here you’ll see cows, sheep, chickens, pigs, a garden, and a nature center. General admission is free.
Rancho San Antonio is very popular so it can be very crowded on the weekend. Afternoons and weekdays are the best time to visit if you don’t want to deal with lots of people on the trails.
Note: The service road is mainly for bicyclists, wheelchairs, and service vehicles. Pedestrians should use the Lower Meadow Trail.
To watch a slideshow of my wheelchair hike to Deer Hollow Farm and of the Deer Meadow Trail, please visit my Adventures From a Wheelchair blog: http://irishsea-mark-videos.blogspot.com/