Contra Costa Canal Trail

Contra Costa Canal Trail

This morning, my brother Mark and I enjoyed another Sunday bicycle ride. With our bikes, we caught the first BART train of the morning in Castro Valley at 8:15 AM. We transferred twice on BART, at Bayfair and at 19th St. in Oakland, and at 9:20 AM we arrived at the Pleasant Hill BART station where we exited the BART system.

From the Pleasant Hill BART station, we pedaled south for a half mile on the Iron Horse Trail to reach its junction with the Contra Costa Canal Trail. We rode north and west on the Contra Costa Canal Trail for approximately 6 miles to reach Mark’s daughter’s apartment, where Mark was running an errand. Then we turned around and pedaled the same 6 miles back to the Pleasant Hill BART station, via the same route, and rode BART homeward.

On our way home on BART, we stopped at the San Leandro station and pedaled a couple of blocks to visit our father in his assisted living facility. After a short visit with our father, we pedaled back to San Leandro BART to catch a train to Castro Valley station where our day began.

You can see a 9.5 minute video of the Contra Costa Canal Trail ride in the slideshow, below. It was a great trip and an excellent bike ride, but I did something incredibly stupid near the end of the trip and I’m still paying for my mistake.

After we visited my father and we returned to San Leandro BART, I got impatient waiting for the elevator to take my bike up to the train platform so I tried taking my bike up the escalator. Unfortunately, my foot slipped on the escalator and I lost my grip on my handlebar. My bike came flying back toward me. The end of the handlebar struck me on the right eyebrow, forcing me to make a grab for my eyeglasses which were knocked loose by the blow from the handlebar. As I used my hand to gather my eyeglasses, I was unable to use my hand to grab the bike frame as it headed back toward me.

The frame of the bike hit me squarely and brought me down to my knees. I scrambled pretty quickly to get back to my feet and grab control of my bike, but the sharp teeth on the edges of the escalator steps had already torn through the skin on my shins. It was a pretty bloody scene, but it looked worse much worse than it really was. In the end, there were no major injuries.

I was both stupid and lucky today. I have some long and deep cuts on my shins, several large bruises on my chest and upper arms, and it looks like a colorful black eye is slowly developing too. A lot of eyes were on me during the BART ride from San Leandro to Castro Valley as blood poured down from both of my shins and colored my white socks with a deep red. I learned my lesson the hard way. I’ll never walk my bike up an escalator again.

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