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336. Alec Canyon & Nibb's Knob (08/23/03)

Hikers (17): Blinky, David, Eugene, Hether, Hoy, Janice, Jinglan, Kathleen D, Kevin T, Laurie, Olivier, Russ, Sergei, Siemel, Steve, Tree, Winnie
Distance: 8 miles
Rating: 3 difficulty, 8 beauty
Park info: Uvas Canyon County Park near Morgan Hill

Write-up by Winnie

Our destination of Uvas park is located near Morgan Hill, but it's all local road from south San Jose. There's a small Swedish community few miles before the the park entrance. I thought of my Swedish co-worker who always pronounces "Yeh" for the letter "J". After everyone arrived the parking lot, Russ handed us the maps with 3 trails highlighted. He explained the order of the trails he planned. I noticed right a way there were a few "Steep" indications on the map but didn't know exactly what to expect.

1, 2, 3, ... INCH!

We started from the easiest Alec Canyon trail. Steve, who took the lead (as usual), exaggerated (or lied? ) to us about this waterfall: "Oh you have to see the water fall! My heart is still pounding after seeing it". But in this late summer season, the only thing I saw was few drops of water!

The Waterfall Loop was a pleasant hike. There were nice big trees and lots of shade. I enjoyed walking on the path covered by beautiful leaves with all kinds of color, yellow, white, golden. . . .I could smell the sweetness of the air, and the scent actually came from the sage-like leaves of some kind of tree. Suddenly, I heard some strange foreign conversation - it was Eugene practicing French with Olivier. Editor's note: the conversation probably sounded foreign to Olivier too.

We were talking about soy products before the hike. Heather just happened to bring her sandwich with soy cheese which Steve and Siemel commented "disgusting". (But soy cheese sounds interesting to me, maybe I'll try it next time.) Editor's Note: Another memorable moment was Blinky slicing her index finger with her pocket knife while peeling her banana. That is what she gets for using her left hand to cut things. Janice came to the rescue with her backpack full of medical supplies.

After taking a short bathroom break, we continued the challenges of Nibb's Knob. Within 10 minutes, I realized that everything before was just a warm-up and I already felt like giving up. When I saw more people passing me, I must keep telling myself, "Yes Winnie, you can do it..." As we hiked higher, it got warmer and there was less shade. Kathleen called it "shade hopping": we hiked about 50 yards, took a break in the shade, looked up, tried to find another shady spot, and so on. I was impressed by the two sisters since this was their first hike! Overall it's rewarding, since the view is really nice on the hill. After struggling on this 1.6 mile trail, I finally made it to the destination. Of course I was the last person who arrived, but I'm glad I made it. :-)

On the way back, all I wanted were soda, ice cream, frappuccino, Jamba Juice. Steve reminded me about the taste of pearl tea as well. After saying goodbye to Eugene and Laurie, we sat down and chit-chat a little bit. Janice, Beth, Russ, Dave and everyone brought a pair of comfortable sandals except me. Well, that just gave me an excuse to shop at REI again.

Kathleen D's 1st leaf
Olivier's 1st leaf
Russ's 260th leaf
Siemel's 1st leaf
Tree's 1st leaf

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