Although locals refer to the Santa Cruz Mountains as “the hill”, the coastal ranges have seemingly countless hills, peaks, valleys, and gluches winding between the Santa Clara Valley and the beach. Several of the hills and peaks have names (if they all do, I’m not aware of it), one of them being Collord’s Peak, which you can read about at the corner of East Main Street and High School Court. In the image below, there’s a very tall peak, El Sombroso, with a nearer and lower peak in the foreground – that one is Collord’s peak.
It was not possible for me to show both the hills in the distance and the plaque equally well lit, so here’s a closeup of the plaque honoring Victor R. Collord.
And one more closeup of his good deeds named: Continue reading
The Shannon Valley Ranch neighborhood is a young, small luxury community in far east Los Gatos found on just two roads: Shannon Oaks Lane and Mountain Laurel Lane, located just off Hicks Road near Shannon Road. This area is part of the Los Gatos Union School District (it’s very close to the border of the Union School District). There are just 14 of these estate quality properties here, mostly on 2-4 acre parcels with between 4000 and 5000 square feet. The homes were built between 2006 and 2008, with most completed in 2008. Naturally, these are multi-million dollar houses. Because it’s a small enclave, turnover is low. The most recent sale named on the multiple listing service was almost 2 years ago (as of late 2016) and was at $3.65 million with 6 bedrooms, so you could reasonably expect that homes in this area would be worth between $4 and $5 today in most cases, perhaps more.
A recent visit to the neighborhood reveals that much of the landscaping is now fairly mature. Many neighbors have landscaped for privacy, which is understandable, but doesn’t afford a very good view of these gorgeous properties. Here are a couple to give you an idea. The homes, the land, and the scenery nearby area all exceptional.
One of the things I love about these houses is that they are comfortably spread out, mostly “ranch style,” and it fits so well with the setting.
Where is Shannon Valley Ranch?
Shannon Valley Ranch is close to the intersection of Hicks and Shannon Road, not too far from Camden Avenue (but it feels a world away) and close to the San Jose / Almaden border. When I pulled the boundaries of the subdivision, the map of the parcels’ location had a funny “jog” up toward Santa Rosa. I believe that segment is not yet built out, and I cannot explain the shape. It is what can be found on the county records, however.
One of the nicest things about this location is the scenery and hiking available. There’s a trail that connects this area with the Sierra Azul Open Space Preserve and the network of paths that meanders over Blossom Hill (the hill, not the road) to the Heintz Open Space Preserve and Belgatos Park. I’ll post a trail map below the open space trail slideshow. Some of it does require traversing streets, but probably 98% is dirt walkways.
From a few years ago – here are some photos from the Shannon Valley Open Space trail. In the distance, see the Guadalupe Landfill, and below it, the Brookside Development in Almaden (with Los Gatos schools), which is now fully built. The Shannon Valley Ranch neighborhood is off to the right of this photo and when these photos were taken, the neighborhood was not yet built out.