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El Corte de Madera Creek - September 26, 2010

Distance: 11.1 miles Ascent: 2,298 feet Moving time: 1:42 hours

Temperatures picked up in the last few days, increasing about 40 degrees. We headed up to El Corte de Madera Creek (Skeggs) to keep under the trees. We started with a quick ride on Blue Blossom that everyone really enjoyed. This is probably one of the best trails in the preserve. We went all the way to the end and continued our descent on Gordon Mill, taking this all the way down to Timberview.

Going to the bottom of Timberview was a huge mistake! The bottom of Timberview is steep. Really steep! If you look at the elevation chart, the trail seems to go vertical. The trail picks up almost 500 feet of elevation in about 0.6 miles with several sections that are much steeper than the average. With a bit of effort, Mike cleared the entire trail but the rest of us resorted to hike-a-bike to get up the steepest sections.

After a short breather, we headed down Giant Salamander followed by a long, sustained climb up Methuselah. We plugged away up to the main junction and then headed down Manzanita. This was pretty fun, but none of us made up the rock garden this time. We went down a section of Timberview followed by Crosscut and Crossover before climbing back to the starting point on Gordon Mill.

We quickly packed up and headed to Alice's. The parking lot was completed filled with motorcycles, but we eventually found parking places. We ended up having to side inside where it was hotter, but we still enjoyed a good lunch to top off the ride.

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