Welcome to the Santa Cruz Mountains

Remote community life on a coastal mountain range


It is time to slow down and let the sights and sounds of nature envelop you. There are peaks and valleys of the lush, green forest as far as the eye can see. Some areas have redwoods towering overhead, while others have unique rock structures jutting out. The city's noise has given way to the sound of birds chirping and animals foraging for food. It is as if you are the only person on the planet. To some, that sounds idyllic, and that is why they choose to move to the Santa Cruz Mountain region.


The Santa Cruz Mountains are vast; the area falls into one of two counties: Santa Cruz or Santa Clara. The Soquel and Big Basin areas are found in Santa Cruz County, while Lexington Reservoir is in Santa Clara County.


What to Love

  • Redwood groves
  • Breathtaking views of the coastline and basins
  • Rural yet accessible


Local Lifestyle

People move to the mountains for numerous reasons. Some want to get away from the day-to-day of Silicon Valley, but they still need to be able to reach the city and have access to a high-ranking school system like Los Gatos. Some have dreams of growing that perfect grape. Still, others seek a quiet life close to nature.


Mountain life is not like city life; there is a bit of an adjustment. However, even though the mountains are in a rural area, you are not cut off from the world. Most of the time, you should be able to drive to Santa Cruz or Los Gatos in less than 20 minutes.


Dining, Entertainment & Shopping

The Summit Store is a staple in the community. This is not your typical grocery store. They have a sushi chef onsite, a breakfast, lunch, and dinner bar, and a coffee bar. However, their standout item has got to be their gourmet sandwiches. People stop in to pick one up on their way to one of the local wineries or on their way to the bike trails.


Loma Prieta Winery is the largest producer of Pinotage in the United States; this fantastic winery offers tastings and other events. While you are there, you can play the ancient game of bocce. You can also bring a picnic lunch to enjoy while taking in the breathtaking views of the mountains and the coast.


Award-winning Byington Vineyard and Winery produces some of the finest cabernet sauvignon, pinot noir, and chardonnay wines. A premier destination, they have wine tastings, tours, events, a bocce court, and a hiking trail.


Soquel Vineyards is one of the best wine-tasting outings in the area. Of course, their wine has won awards, but what really makes this experience memorable is the warm, personable service from the owners. The landscape is gorgeous; the wine is delicious, and if you are fortunate enough to be there when they are making pizza, you may just get a slice.


Things to Do

Mountain bikers congregate at Soquel Demonstration Forest in Santa Cruz county for some of the most challenging and exciting trails. The four-mile-long Flow Trail is a popular track that takes bikers on a ride through the redwoods. The forest is also open to hikers and equestrians, but few go there.


Castle Rock State Park and Big Basin Redwoods State Park are in the central section of the mountains. Castle Rock State Park is preferred by hikers, backpackers, and horseback riders for its numerous trails and stunning views. The sandstone rock formations and caverns at the park are a big draw to rock climbers. Big Basin Redwoods State Park has miles of trails and fire roads for hiking. The redwoods, waterfalls, and vistas are why people keep coming back. Locals also enjoy Lexington Reservoir for boating and fishing. The reservoir is man-made and is used as a source of water for the area. It was constructed where the towns of Lexington and Alma once stood. When the water level drops, it is possible to see sections of the roads still present from the towns below.


Overview for Mountains, CA

9,767 people live in Mountains, where the median age is 46.5 and the average individual income is $83,423. Data provided by the U.S. Census Bureau.


Total Population

46.5 years

Median Age


Population Density Population Density This is the number of people per square mile in a neighborhood.


Average individual Income

Demographics and Employment Data for Mountains, CA

Mountains has 3,753 households, with an average household size of 2.59. Data provided by the U.S. Census Bureau. Here’s what the people living in Mountains do for work — and how long it takes them to get there. Data provided by the U.S. Census Bureau. 9,767 people call Mountains home. The population density is 109.16 and the largest age group is Data provided by the U.S. Census Bureau.


Total Population


Population Density Population Density This is the number of people per square mile in a neighborhood.


Median Age

50.81 / 49.19%

Men vs Women

Population by Age Group


0-9 Years


10-17 Years


18-24 Years


25-64 Years


65-74 Years


75+ Years

Education Level

  • Less Than 9th Grade
  • Associate Degree
  • Bachelor Degree

Total Households


Average Household Size


Average individual Income

Households with Children

With Children:

Without Children:

Marital Status


Blue vs White Collar Workers

Blue Collar:

White Collar:

Commute Time

0 to 14 Minutes
15 to 29 Minutes
30 to 59 Minutes
60+ Minutes

Schools in Mountains, CA

All ()
Primary Schools ()
Middle Schools ()
High Schools ()
Mixed Schools ()
The following schools are within or nearby Mountains. The rating and statistics can serve as a starting point to make baseline comparisons on the right schools for your family. Data provided by the U.S. Census Bureau.
School rating
Loma Prieta Elementary
K - 5th
C. T. English Middle
6th - 8th
Lakeside Elementary
K - 5th
No rating available
K - 5th

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