Warm Winter Weekends
The start of the year is usually a pretty cold time. It may not be as chilly as Chicago or Vermont, but we reach below freezing temperatures fairly often and it chills our Summer-acclimated bones. That’s why it was a real treat to have a weekend of 68ºf clear skies to get out and enjoy the bike with the family.
My Wife was not feeling well, so she decided to relax at home while I brought my Son out to ride with my Brother-In-Law and his family. We rode the Coyote Creek Trail from Metcalf south towards the city of Morgan Hill. It’s a nine mile ride to the visitor center, so we took in almost 18 miles that day!
The trail parallels Coyote Creek and Highway 101 as they wander through the foothills of the Madrone valley. It is a beautiful scene which I am all too familiar with, as I first rode this trail about thirty years ago when I was exploring trails on my mountain bike in high school. Back then, the terrain was a bit rougher, and there were far fewer homes along the way.
Being mostly flat, the creek trail derives its interestingness not from fun climbs and drops, but instead from its array of views, plants, trees, and wildlife. We saw a sandhill crane on the side of the trail. It is not uncommon to see snakes, rabbits, bobcats, and tarantulas on or near the trail.
I was much farther away than it looks in the video when the crane got spooked (my iPhone was in “zoom” mode). I try not to get too close to the wildlife.
Although the noise from nearby highway 101 can get in the way of the serene nature of the creek, I try to remind myself that this is still far better than having houses and shopping centers everywhere. After all, it’s not often the kids get to be “away” from the city streets, and it’s nice to have something like this just a 20 minute drive from the house.
After a mid-ride break of ice cream and rest at the Anderson Lake Visitor Center, we rode back to the cars. The sugar-fueled kids were in full turbo-mode all the way back, and it was sometimes difficult to keep up!
Fun was had by all, and all slept well that night. My Wife was sad that she was unable to attend, but glad that we got out and spent some quality family time. Perhaps I will host next time and we can ride the slightly more challenging Los Gatos Creek Trail near my house.
My hand, while much improved over the last few weeks, complained to me a few times on this easy ride. I cannot tell if this is because of lingering injury, or just because it is stiff from non-use, so I will try to stretch and use it a bit more in the next week (gently!) I hope I feel comfortable enough to ride dirt soon.
This mellow ride may not have been a fast downhill shred, but it was a great day and it’s always a good time with family. I’ll be back on the trails soon enough.