Joe Grant

San Jose
Sunday, Nov. 11, 2001

Contact: Jeff Lanam, 408-259-2756

Course setter Vladimir Gusiatnikov is taking a fresh look at the familiar slopes of Joseph Grant County Park. He has set courses with long legs that emphasize route selection and avoid the worst of the deep reentrants and poison oak. Maps for the advanced courses will be printed at 1:15000, which should add a challenge for those used to the usual scale for this map.

Starts and finishes will be a short distance from the registration area, the San Felipe picnic area. Water and toilets are nearby. E-punching will be used for Orange and the advanced courses. The usual fees and schedule apply; remember that registration closes at noon, and courses close at 2:00 PM. Stragglers will be fed to the feral pigs.

Final course statistics:

Course     Length  Climb   Controls

Blue       8.38     640      9
Red        7.08     480      8
Green      5.75     375      8
Brown      4.43     270      7
Orange     5.70     320      6
Yellow     3.15     120      9
White      2.68      55      8

Course-Setters Notes

For this event, I tried to create courses that would have minimum slow zones. Too often in the Bay Area, I face legs that could only be covered at a very slow speed, usually due to steepness. I hope that this will not be the case for this event. Another feature that is uncommon for the area is the use of long legs with route choice. I believe that the essense of a good course is a challenging navigation problem posed by the leg, rather than by the control feature itself.

The grasses in the park are fairly short; those of you who prefer running in shorts will not suffer much. There is poison oak in the park and on the courses. The best route choice will avoid most of it. The feral pigs seem to have added some weight since my last visit to the park a few years ago. These creatures will stare at you and may not run away while you approach, but are not known to attack humans. Deer are plentiful in the park. These two species seem to account for a lot of more-or-less level trails that cover the slopes. The more prominent of these trails are mapped. Generally, the presence of game trails indicates the more runnable, less steep areas of the slopes. Good route choice will emphasize level running, climbing and descending the less steep parts of the slopes, and the use of park roads and game trails over covering the shortest distance. Highway 130 to the telescopes is lightly travelled, and is a valid choice for the advanced courses.

The scale of the map for Red through Blue is 1:15,000. This scale is appropriate for these courses. The rest of the courses will enjoy a 1:10,000 map. The start is a 500 m or so walk from the registration; the finish is less than 200 m away.


Take the Alum Rock Road exit off I-680 in San Jose, and head for the hills (east). This exit is about one mile northeast of the 280/680/101 interchange. Continue on Alum Rock Road for about 2 miles, and turn right onto Mt. Hamilton Road. Go for about 9 miles. The park entrance will be on your right.