Popular South Bay park, closed in December due to storm damage, reopens

One of the South Bay’s favorite parks welcomed back outdoor enthusiasts Saturday after being shut down for months following severe weather and storm damage.

A line of cyclists and hikers waited outside the gates of Alum Rock Park in San Jose until the park opened at 8 A.M.

 "Thank you for opening. Woo hoo," said one cyclist as he rode by.

The state’s oldest municipal park closed in December, amid a series of atmospheric rivers and severe storms which wreaked havoc on the park over the last few months.

"I've never seen anything like this," said park ranger, Danny Nguyen. "When we decided to close the park, the hills which are usually pretty stationary, slowly slid onto the road."

The park’s 10 acres of trails, were washed over by mudslides and other debris. In some case, boulders blocked trails and powerful winds toppled trees. 

It took months for volunteers and park crews to clean up the mess. 

"It’s beautiful up here. It’s very beautiful. You get on up to the top of the hill over there, and you can see the whole city," said cyclist Rocky Floyd.    

While much of the park is now open, maintenance crews say there’s still a lot of work ahead. 

On a tour of the park, maintenance crews showed KTVU several trails that they’ve yet to clear. 

A section of the main roadway remains badly damaged after a massive tree fell and caused part of it to collapse into a creek.  

"Right now we’re down to one lane, which is why we’re not allowing public vehicles to come in," said Nguyen. "That hasn’t been opened yet, and I don’t have a date on that yet, but we still wanted to reopen the park, so people can walk and bike."

Because maintenance crews are still working on several areas of the park, they are reminding visitors to review posted trail maps before heading out and to follow all signs and closures.