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Canada del Oro Night Ride - September 11, 2009

Distance: 9.30 miles Ascent: 2042 feet Moving time: 1:22 hours

It was time for another night ride at Canada del Oro sponsored by the Santa Clara County Open Space Authority. We arrive a few minutes before official sunset and the sun had officially set by the time we started riding. I was able to do the Mayfair climb without a light, which allowed me to surprise a deer feeding near the trail. We held a pretty good pace up to the junction with Longwall and Catamount. We quickly decided that Longwall was a lot more fun, so up we went. We saw one other rider on the trail who was already heading back. We didn't bother to stop at the picnic table and forged onto the summit.

We had a nice break at the summit. It had been warm today, but the temperature had cooled down into the 70s. There was a gentle breeze to keep things cool but not cold. It seemed like the only sounds were the gentle rustling of the grass in the breeze and the songs of the crickets. The lights of San Jose sparkled in the distance, but we were in darkness except for one small LED light and the stars.

After the break, we headed back down. We passed the rangers with the video camera for the third time (making a video for their website). Ken gave directions to the top to a group that had stopped at the picnic tables and then we headed toward the bottom. The dust was not super thick on the trail, but it did seem to hang in the air, so we had to put large gaps between us. I thought the lower part of Mayfair through the meadow was a lot of fun.

We had a good time afterwards with a bit of tailgating and we shared some brownies with the rangers. As always, they did a great job!

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