Recently I was delighted to bike from downtown to the Westside Farmers’ Market via the California Street bike lane to the new section of the Rail Trail. Answers to Ginger Jacobs’ question “Why is it here?” (Letters, 12/23) rushed into my mind.
This short bit of Rail Trail is part of a longtime dream come true, and the folks I encountered on the trail have answers: a tiny child on a bike too small for pedals striding along with their family; groups of mountain bikers heading to and from Wilder Ranch; people with bikes loaded with groceries. Then there were babies in strollers waiting for their own bikes or skateboards so they can eventually get to school safely without sitting in those 8am lines of idling cars.
It has been a long road to get this short trail, and many have tried to derail the Rail Trail dream. At the same time, many individuals and nonprofits are contributing their money and time toward this vision of a safe, scenic route connecting our county from end to end for locals and tourists alike. If you are skeptical about the rail part, take a ride from Marin to Santa Rosa on the electric SMART train and bring your bike to pedal the flat panoramic trail alongside.
So, why is it here? It is here for all of our well-being, for our resilient community including the neighborhoods, schools, stores, trees, parks, restaurants, and breweries along the way. As lengths open over time, the effect will multiply. Pedaling this trail takes me to a joyful place of gratitude for this beautiful place we live. Take a walk, ride or roll and find out for yourself why it is there and where it takes you.
K. Groppi | Santa Cruz
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