It’s always nice to find pleasant spots with hookups. This county park is a lovely surprise just west of Gilroy and would be worth return trips. There are loops for RVs and for tent campers, all located inside the shelter of a redwood forest, with a pretty easy drive from home. Definite score.
Taking Highway 101 to 152, we hit some typical Friday traffic, but still got to our site around 6:30. Soon, the clocks will change and I’ll bet we will appreciate that port side light we got installed. The campground was hopping with kids riding around on bikes and families hanging out together for dinner. The only thing interrupting the peaceful vibe was the intermittent thud of acorns or redwood cones hitting Dory’s roof. Some of them were loud!
Saturday we woke up super lazily late and decided to check out the park’s historic site. It was a woodsy, uphill hike from the campground to the location of Henry Miller’s House. He was a German immigrant who went from having 50 cents in his pocket in 1850, to controlling 14.5 million acres of land in CA, OR, and NV for his million head of cattle to graze. He built a summer home on Mt. Madonna and you can see what is left of the foundations and couple of remaining walls after the site was abandoned.
Also present in the park is a small group of White Fallow Deer, apparently gifted from the herd at Hearst Castle. What is perhaps most impressive about the animals on display is the hefty security around the enclosure. When you walk up, you expect either to see warning signs about the terrifyingly lethal nature of these deer, or witness one get eaten by a T-Rex. In actuality, the barbed wire and electrified fencing is there to prevent them from being eaten by the local Mountain Lions. Also, but not as much, exciting.
The trails were lovely and there was a beautiful wedding going on at the amphitheater. We remarked on how much Dory-ing feels like going on regular weekend honeymoons. We also noted that it would be fun to renew our vows in a park like this one, and rent a taco truck for guests, like this couple had done. We spent the hike back to Dory contemplating tacos.
For the afternoon, I churned out a report and tried out my other project: a magnetic screen door. This is a flagrant copy project, stolen from Jim Gauvreau, and it works great! It is just a pre-made screen ordered off Amazon, which has been trimmed down to size and mounted with velcro. This prevents bugs from getting in when you want as much breeze and airflow possible. Now that summer is receding and there is a distinct chill in the air, I question my timing on this project. Still, it will be nice next year.
This is a great county park. The sites have trees between them for some privacy, and hookups in the RV loop. Great dump and hiking trails to boot. For those who like campground showers, there are nice clean facilities. Thanks Mr. Police Officer who chatted with us at Anderson Lake for the recommendation!
Total miles: 88.8, 16.1 mpg, 2 hours 54 min. Site 115. Electric and water in RV loop, Valley View 1. Good dump, potable water. No cell service for either. Boosted, we both could get 1-2 bars of slow LTE.
2 thoughts on “Mt. Madonna County Park”
Nice job Alissa. We were amazed this past summer by how effective the door screen was. It made a great difference.
Acorns hitting the roof…a crazy alarming sound…every time.
Sewing machines are fun!