Bay Loop

Ruth had a sleepover last night in Fremont, and the Bay Trail to the north of Moffett Field just reopened after being resurfaced. We figured we’d pick Ruth up with the bikes, then keep going around the bay.

At the pickup, Ruth was excited both about the sleepover and the bike ride we were starting. We had to leave most of her stuff for later pickup, since we already had the touring load.

Then, to add some miles and climbing, we took the long way out of town on Paseo Padre. The road is actually kind of challenging. The grade was always mild, but enough that it didn’t really feel like climbing. We call it a vampire hill, because it just kind of sucks your energy when you aren’t paying attention. We did get a decent descent at least.

After crossing 680, the new BART line, and 880, we turned south on Fremont, which now connects through to the Coyote Creek Trail. The water level in the creek was still high from last week’s rains.

After looping south into north San Jose, we got to ride on some other trails, which have been repaved and signed as the 237 Bikeway. It was much nicer.

We took a bit of a detour through the various water and waste treatment plant along Zanker Road and Alviso.

Eventually we emerged into the Sunnyvale Baylands Park for lunch. There was an interesting rope play structure, and some handy picnic tables. The kids alternated between playing on the ropes and snarfing down food. Ruth asked if Mommy could pull her trailer for a while. Fortunately, since we’ve unified the hitches, we could say yes.

Then it was time to take the newly resurfaced Bay Trail north of Moffett. We road this trail, in the other direction, shortly after it originally opened back in 2010. It was mostly pretty rough – dirt with a lot of ruts, and gravel in a few places. At that point it was just existing access roads that had been opened to the public.  Now it has some kind of fine gravel, highly compacted. Evidently there was some environmental concerns that kept it from being done with asphalt, but this stuff seemed to be working well. The winds picked up as we got more and more into the bay.

Midway through, Anne suddenly came nearly to a stop. There was a snake crossing the road, stretching most of the way across. We went around.

Then, after Ruth decided she was cold and wanted more clothes, we rode through Shoreline Park. Parts were nice, but mostly it had too many pedestrians for my taste. I think I would have preferred the road.

We cut through to Palo Alto, and took the trail that goes by the small civil airport there. We got to watch helicopters and planes land and take off while riding parallel to the runway. The best part was when the trail crosses in front of the runway, and the small planes take off directly overhead. Ruth was thrilled, calling out each one, and commenting on whether they sucked up the landing gear or not.

Cutting through EPA and across Dumbarton Bridge, we made it home well before dark. Success!

After dinner, during bedtime, Ruth started melting down, nominally about the various things that we hadn’t brought home yet from the sleepover. During a self-aware part of the meltdown, she told me, “I’m so tired.  Sleepovers are hard work.” We got her sorted out and to bed, although it did take a bit of coaxing.