Morgan Hill
Sunday, Nov. 17, 2002

Contact: Abby Wolfe, 408-979-1735

Want to work off a few Thanksgiving pounds ahead of time? Then come on out to beautiful Calero Reservoir; its semi-open terrain offers spectacular views, and this year we transplanted most of the poison oak to Almaden Quicksilver for the A-meet, so there is very little left on the courses. (We tried to do the same with the climb, but had only partial success.) If you're lucky, you might even see a wild drumstick, er, turkey! There are plenty of picnic tables, so bring your lunch to enjoy while you discuss your courses with friends and/or fellow orienteers.

Scenic Calero The usual seven courses are being offered. Thorsten Graeve has once again set the advanced courses (Brown, Green, Red, Blue), and Abby Wolfe designed the beginner and intermediate courses (White, Yellow, Orange). Orange and the four advanced courses will use e-punching; White and Yellow will have the traditional manual punches.

Event times and fees are as usual, and there will be free beginner's clinics between 9:30 and 10:30 am. Registration will be in the parking area. All courses share a remote start, which is approximately 1.2 km from registration with 75 meters of climb. Allow 20 minutes for the walk. The finish areas will be across the road from parking and registration. Directions to the park are below.

The Calero map has again been updated, including the addition of previously unmapped rock features and the correction of vegetation boundaries throughout the park. The advanced courses feature both short legs requiring quick and precise navigation as well as long legs with multiple route choices. The terrain is quite runnable, and climb has been spread out as much as possible to allow a fast pace.

All courses share a remote Start, which is approximately 1.2 km from Registration, with 75 meters of climb. Allow 20 minutes for the walk. The Finish areas are just across the road from the parking and assembly area (you'll see them on the way to the start).

Final course statistics:

          Length     Climb   Controls    Difficulty

White     3.2  km     60 m      8        beginner [all on trail]
Yellow    3.2  km    160 m      9        advanced beginner [a few off-trail options]
Orange    4.1  km    200 m     13        intermediate [best routes are cross- country]
Brown     3.95 km    220 m     10        advanced
Green     4.6  km    280 m     12        advanced
Red       6.2  km    350 m     16        advanced
Blue      7.1  km    400 m     19        advanced
Note: The park rangers could cancel this event if it rains significantly. Should this happen, it will be posted here, on Bayonet, and on the BAOC hotline at 408-255-8018. If you're in doubt, check before heading to the park.

Things to keep in mind

Beginner & Intermediate Course Notes

Good news: The climb to the Start means less climb on the actual courses. In fact, all of the climb on the White course (and much of it on Yellow) is on the way to the first control. After that, White is all downhill! White and Yellow use traditional manual punching, and have their own Start area separate from the Orange/advanced courses.

The Orange course uses electronic punching (be sure to rent an e- stick at Registration if you donšt own one), and will have the same Start as the advanced courses. Most of the course is off-trail and covers terrain similar to that of the advanced courses, although with easier routes and control placements. Please read the Advanced Courses notes below for important details about the map, e-punching, and your final control. Depending on your route choices, you may encounter some poison oak, star thistle, and weed stickers, so we recommend long pants.

Advanced Course Notes

The advanced courses cover mostly familiar terrain, but with new legs and route choices enabled by extensive remapping of large sections of the park. Calero features mostly spur-and-reentrant terrain with areas of abundant rock features and complex map detail. Vegetation ranges from large open areas to steep forested hillsides. In designing the courses, the emphasis has been placed on technical navigation requiring close contact with the map, with some longer legs providing interesting route choices as well.

Climb has been spread out as much as possible, but some legs do traverse or ascend steep hillsides with loose dirt footing. Sturdy shoes with cleats and/or metal spikes are highly advisable. There are only small amounts of star thistle in the park, but all advanced courses will encounter some areas with poison oak. The good news is that the poison oak is currently in its most "benign" (i.e. leafless and dry) condition of the year. The standard precautions with Tecnu should be sufficient to ward off any allergic reactions.

The map quality for Calero ranges from highly detailed to somewhat inaccurate. About 90% of the area used this year has been remapped since the map was put into OCAD. The main problem is that the current map, with additions from half-a-dozen mappers over the years, is somewhat of a conglomerate of different mapping styles. This is especially evident in the mapping of rock features. In areas of abundant rock detail only the largest features are mapped, whereas areas of sparse detail may feature even boulders smaller than 0.5m. The map makes extensive use of the "stony ground" symbol to denote areas that are covered with various-sized boulders too numerous to map individually.

On the map the brown X symbol is used for rootstocks (typically a downed tree, sometimes with a stump remaining). The green X denotes a standing dead tree. The current water level in the reservoir is several meters below the mapped water level. This may affect a route choice on the Red and Blue courses. The maps are printed at a 1:10,000 scale with 25-foot contour intervals (roughly equal to 7.5 meters). Clue sheets are printed on the front of the maps, and the maps will be placed in plastic bags (but not sealed) at the center of the start triangle.

All the advanced courses use electronic punching. Be sure to Clear and Check your e-punch stick before proceeding to the Start. At the Start, hand your e-punch stub to the starter to get a start time. When your time is called, punch the start control and follow the streamers to the location of the start triangle, where you will find your map.

The intermediate and advanced courses use a finish chute that is separate from the White and Yellow finish. The final control is at a fence crossing marked with orange streamers. From the control, follow the streamers to the finish. The finish line is unmanned ­ donšt forget to punch in order to record your time. Courses close at 2:00 pm, and you must report back to the finish by that time. Remember to download your e-punch data when you return to the assembly area (parking lot).

We hope you have a great time!


From the Peninsula, take Highway 85 south to Almaden Expressway. Head south 5 miles to the end of the road. Turn right onto Harry, and then immediately left onto McKean. The main park entrance is 5 miles south on McKean. Go past the boat ramp and turn right at the entrance marked "Calero County Park; Park Office; Equestrian Center; All Trailheads."

From the East Bay, take Highway 101 south past San Jose and exit at Bernal Road west. Immediately turn south onto Monterey Highway (bear right, then make a left turn). Go south 3.4 miles and turn right at the traffic light onto Bailey Avenue. After 2.9 miles west, Bailey ends at McKean; turn left and go south 0.7 miles to the park entrance.