South Bay bike train
A “bike train” is a caravan of cyclists commuting together on a regular schedule. During the month of May I’m riding my bike to work the 20 miles from San Jose to my job in Menlo Park via Palo Alto. If you’d like to join me, I generally depart from either Park @ Bird in San Jose or from the Caltrain Diridon Station (San Jose Depot) at either 6:55 a.m. or 7:30 a.m., though this morning I didn’t get started until 7:50 a.m. Follow my Twitter feed for exact departure time that I’ll post about 10 minutes prior. It’s best also to text me at 408-505-8159 if you want to ensure I’ll look for you that morning.
I take a variety of routes (outlined below), and I’m flexible on my routing if your stop is along the way in Santa Clara, Sunnyvale, Mountain View, Cupertino, Los Alto or Palo Alto somewhere. I ride at a moderate club pace of about 15 to 17 mph, though I pump that up to better than 20 mph on Foothill Expressway and I’ll draft behind the Derny girl on Foothill if I can catch her.
This is mostly a no drop ride; this means we might pull ahead but we’ll wait up for you before important intersections. You will sweat on this ride and we’re generally lycra clad. You’ll see a mix of fixies, cross bikes and road bikes. If you ride a knobby tired mountain bike and can keep up, feel free to join us. If you’re not sure about the pace, come along for the ride anyway.
I don’t run red lights and I yield proper right of way at all stop signs. I might stop or slow to take photos if I see something interesting.
Please contact me if you’d like to join along for the ride. I’ll take Caltrain on Wednesdays because I need to haul a computer with me. All other days I plan to ride the distance.
To join the train: (1) Text me at 408-505-8159, or contact me via this form or email; (2) Follow my Twitter feed for exact departure time, though I’ll also try calling you before the start time if you’d like and if you leave your number. You can expect calls or texts as early as 6:45 AM. I will not send email that early in the morning.
Bike routes from San Jose to Palo Alto California
Cyclists have posted several options for bike routes from San Jose to Palo Alto and Menlo Park, California.
- This downtown San Jose to Menlo Park route takes cyclists along the Guadalupe River Trail around the airport to Central Expressway. You leave the Expressway near San Antonio Road in Mountain View, following residential streets and a bike bridge to get to Bryant Avenue in Palo Alto.
- Going via Foothill Expressway is probably my favorite route although it adds a few miles.
- San Jose to downtown Palo Alto via Park, Monroe, Central, California and Bryant is probably my most common commute route.
- Cycling via the Alameda and El Camino Real isn’t as difficult as most people seem to think, though this is not a pleasant ride and the lights are a real pain in the neck.
Other routes are certainly available — I sometimes ride past the Googleplex in Mountain View by going up Shoreline to Charleston and then take the bike bridge over 101 by Oregon Expressway. I sometimes take Stevens Creek Trail to Shoreline Park and through Baylands; since I work in Menlo Park I’ll cut across the San Francisquito Creek bridge by the Palo Alto golf course into East Palo Alto, where I ride up University Avenue to Bayshore Expressway.