Oka Ponds are located in Campbell, CA. They are part of Los Gatos Creek County Park. Located near Dell Avenue, the ponds are easily accessible and a surprisingly good place to see birds. There are six ponds in total. They are also connected by a pedestrian bridge.
The ponds are home to several fun and unusual bird species. If you are lucky, you might even be able to spot an Osprey. Alternatively, you might be able to observe herons, egrets, and gulls while walking along the trails. If you have a dog, you can walk them on the surrounding dirt trails. However, dogs are not allowed in the ponds themselves.
The Los Gatos Creek Trail is a paved multi-use trail that runs alongside ponds 1-3. It is a fairly flat trail that is also wheelchair and bike friendly. It has a few shaded spots and benches along the way. It is a moderately crowded path on weekends. The trail is also very wide. Its a bit bumpy, but it is not difficult to get around. The shortest route is a 3.2 mile out and back trip.
There are two entrances to the trail: the main entrance at Mozart Pedestrian Overcrossing and the one by Dell Avenue. The main entrance is easy to find and the parking lot is ample. The aforementioned Oka Ponds are located across the creek from the main park. There is a pedestrian bridge that leads to the ponds 4-6. The path is 2,000 steps, but the overall physical rating of this route is pretty low. The trail has some moderate elevation gain and is also a bit overrun with people during the weekend. A few flaggers are in place for safety. The aforementioned Oka Ponds may be the best thing to see in the city.
The Oka Lane Ponds are a fun place to visit for duck enthusiasts. While you’re there, you might see a Ruby-crowned Kinglet, a Great and Snowy Egret, or a Black-crowned Night Heron. The ponds are also home to a flock of feral Canada geese.
The Los Gatos Creek Park also has the equestrian trail of the ponds. The main trail, which is a paved path that traverses the creek, has some dirt footpaths to it. The trails around ponds 1-3 are not as well maintained, and are not as flat as the rest of the trail. There are some areas that can be a bit muddy, but they are well marked. The main entry to the park is located at Mozart Pedestrian Overcrossing, and there is also a smaller parking area at the north end of the trail.
The Oka Ponds and Los Gatos Creek County Park are both worthwhile attractions. The best time to go is in the spring or fall, when the waterfowl is at its peak. Other fun activities to enjoy include hiking, biking, and picnicking. Take a stroll through Oka or Los Gatos Creeks – both are known for their bird-watching opportunities! Keep your eyes peeled for the Ruby-crowned Kinglet or the spotted sandpiper – you won’t be disappointed.