Sunday, January 13, 2013

Ranch San Antonio route planner

Rancho San Antonio Open Space Preserve
I thought this was so cool I just had to share it. Stevens Creek Software has a web page called Rancho Runner. On this page is a map of the Rancho San Antonio Open Space Preserve. All of the trailheads and intersections have been given either a letter or a number and what you are supposed to do on this page is write down your route. As an example, if you start at trail head E and run to intersection K, then on to intersection 3, over to intersection B and back to intersection 3 and back to trailhead E that would be written EK3B3E in the space provided on the web page and then you click the Show Distance button and each segment of your route is listed along with the segments distance and elevation gain or lose. At the bottom of the route segments list is the total distance and total elevation gain . To make it easier I have written down the "route" for the popular PG&E trail out & back; 1b2v454v2b1. You will see this route proves to be 8.52 miles long with a gain of 2155 feet.

Looking out over California
from Black Mountain Trail
Rancho is a beautiful park to run in and it satisfies both beginners and the more advanced. If you enter the park from any number of trail heads throughout the Los Altos neighborhoods just west of highway 280 and stay in this initial low land on the multiple trails running the length of this park you can avoid some really tough climbs. If you want a good mix of hills try the PG&E trail. If you want to fry your quads climbing all day start at the bottom and go all the way to the top on Black Mountain Trail. At the top you can fall into the Mone Bello Open Space Preserve and keep the adventure rolling.

Take a trip to Rancho San Antonio and plot it out before hand on the Rancho Runner webpage. It's a fun way to get familiar with an often overlooked trail system.

See you in the woods,