There are no large regional parks where we live. In fact, Santa Margarita Lake is one of the closest parks at an hour away. Admittedly, within a couple of hours are some of the worlds greatest places such as Big Sur but nothing is convenient for a quick run or hike.
When I get off work, Ford Ord National Monument is right there. It’s been amazing to watch it grow in popularity as people discover nature so close to the surrounding cities of Salinas and Monterey. Mountain biking, hiking, running, and walking the dog are common activities seen on the east end of the park. Spending an hour there before driving home was a great reminder of all those parks nestled in or near cities that give you a true escape to the natural environment.