Recreation paths have become a “feel good” activity for politicians and right about now San Jose’s City Council should be feeling good about the latest 1.2-mile addition to Coyote Creek Trail starting at Tully Road.
Of course, most trail building is a multi-agency deal with city, county, federal and even private donation dollars in the mix. The trail saw its formal dedication on Saturday, August 16, as part of the Bay Area Ridge Trail. I did not attend, but I did ride the trail on Sunday.
I’ve long been a fan of the Coyote Creek Trail going south from Hellyer Park nearly to Anderson Reservoir in Morgan Hill. This extension heads 2 miles north from Hellyer to Tully Road, passing a hodgepodge of scenery: Los Lagos golf course, a golf driving range, a new playground in Stone Gate Park, Stonegate Elementary School, a horse ranch, and a skateboard park.
It follows Coyote Creek, although seeing the creek through dense foliage is a challenge. I visited here a couple years ago and wound up on the west side of the creek, which was and still is a homeless camp. The camp dates back to at least 1906, providing every indication that homelessness is a way of life, for some. At least they don’t have to worry about foreclosures.
But I digress. The path is fabulous, with a few rises and descents to get your heart rate going, but only a challenge for youngsters just learning to ride. There’s a drinking fountain at the new playground, picnic tables, and benches.
There’s more to come. One day, probably not in my lifetime though, a recreation path will extend all the way to the bay. Coyote Creek has plenty of parks nearby, but there’s an awful lot of junk and right-of-way hassles to overcome, so it’s going to be long slog. Let your local politician know it’s money well spent.
While it’s a long haul for me – 10 miles on Curtner Avenue most of the way – I like to ride the length of the path and return on other roads, like McKee. The new path is smooth and has those fancy yellow stripes down the middle. The section leading to Hellyer Park from Capitol Expressway has also been spiffed up and repaved, trash removed. Enjoy the ride!