As the Bay Area's urban growth exploded in the mid 1900s, conservationists recognized the need to protect the local wildlife and natural resources. From that need, the Midpeninsula Open Space District was created in 1972, and since then multiple open preserve sites have been designated along the Central Coast. Rancho San Antonio, in conjunction with Santa Clara County Parks, is one such preserve, with over 4,000 acres of protected space. The area is popular with valley residents, and Rancho San Antonio is also one of the few places in the area that have a designated remote control plane flying area.
Deer Hollow Farm is a 160-year-old apple farm that is now a non-profit educational facility that hosts environmental projects for the community. Reaching this farm is a 1.2-mile hike from the lower parking lot via Permanente Creek/Lower Meadow Trail. This is an easy and enjoyable hike with a lot of wildlife. The trails are well maintained and clearly marked.
From either of the lower parking lots, take the Permanente Creek Trail to your right. You will travel near a big field and pass a shady picnic area until it turns into Lower Meadow Trail. Avoid Deer Meadow Trail at this point. From here it is an easy, short walk to Deer Hollow Farm. This portion of the hike is mostly shaded and offers a few good places to get out of the sun. This is also where you will find most of the wildlife in the area. The deer are very docile. Deer Hollow Farm receives over 100,000 visitors a year, so congestion on these trails is quite high.