Penitencia Creek Trail

Urban Hiking at Penitencia Creek on the Ridge Trail

The Bay Area Ridge Trail parallels Penitencia Creek for nearly four miles through two large community parks and beneath Highway 101 in San Jose.

We are hiking the 405-mile Bay Area Ridge Trail. Sign up to follow our progress here.

TRAIL MAP (date hiked)

  • Penitencia Creek Trail
  • Penitencia Creek Trail
  • Penitencia Creek Trail
  • Penitencia Creek Trail
  • Penitencia Creek Trail
  • Penitencia Creek Trail

Our Journal

Our urban hikes on the Ridge Trail have been a mixed bag.

Our hike along Penitencia Creek in San Jose was an easy, unspectacular walk in the park. The creek was running high through the heavily used and modestly maintained parkland. Lots of people were out enjoying the day.

We weren’t thrilled with five-foot clearance and uncertain surface as the trail dipped into the darkness beneath the Highway 101 overpass. But we emerged into the daylight unscathed.

Penitencia Creek Gardens and Penitencia Creek Park are amazing community resources. We saw lots of walkers, runners and cyclists on the trail. If I lived nearby, I would be regular visitor. But it’s not a destination hike. We look forward to returning to the ridges and leaving the valley segments behind as we continue our Ridge Trail adventure.

Miles we hiked


(with returns and connectors)

Elevation gain






Our Progress Hiking the Bay Area Ridge Trail – 341 out of 405 miles


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