Los Gatos is Spanish for “The Cats”. The town itself is full of history at every turn and is rich with historic buildings. Los Gatos is one of Santa Clara County’s oldest communities. In 1840, the Mexican government granted a land patent for a 6,600-acre rancho to Sebastian Peralta and Jose Hernandez. Los Gatos was originally named La Rinconada de Los Gatos (Cat’s Corner) by early settlers due to the screams of mountain lions prowling in the night. In 1868, 100 acres of the rancho was selected as a townsite. The Town was incorporated in 1887, and by 1890 the Town’s population had grown to 1,652. Los Gatos experiences nearly the same temperatures as San Jose, just slightly warmer and with more rain. Los Gatos has a Mediterranean climate like much of California. Downtown Los Gatos has retained and restored many of its Victorian-era homes and commercial buildings. Other notable buildings are the Forbes Mill annex, dating to 1880 and now housing a history museum; Los Gatos High School which dates from the 1920s; and the Old Town Shopping Center, formerly the University Avenue School (the school was established in 1882; the current buildings date to 1923).
Downtown Los Gatos is a true gem! Exceptional restaurants, year-round special events, and a variety of independent boutiques and national retailers make Downtown Los Gatos an ideal destination for residents and visitors. Old town plaza located in the heart of Downtown Los Gatos, Old Town Plaza is home to many popular national retailers and unique restaurants. There is so much to do in a small area, go grab a cup of coffee, walk the shops and enjoy the amazing climate that Los Gatos has to offer.
The park features lots of activities around the reservoir and trails. Swimming is prohibited. The primary areas are located off Alma Bridge Road at the boat launch ramp and Miller Point day use area. The boat launch is located about 0.3 miles from the dam. Non-gas powered boats may launch from the ramp when the reservoir water levels accommodate use of the ramp. Portable toilets and first-come, first-served picnic tables are also available at the boat launch area. This area is also used to access the Jones Trail and Saint Joseph’s Hill Open Space Preserve.
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