Who but an elementary school teacher would convince a buncha hooligans to ride their bikes on dirt and sleep under the stars? Gathering packs of forty or fifty bikecampers, Adam Moss’ adventure rides are legend. This spring the word went around. We’re heading to Black Diamond Mines, a steep and hilly reserve of cow pasture and remnant oak woodland way out in the East Bay hills.
Over the years these short overnight trips have built a community. We circle up and share our names with strangers who become friends. We expect Alexis to wear no pants, Todd to go off on his own, and Erik to ride in past midnight. Some of us bring our cuties, while others show up with a bivvy sack instead of the two-person tent. Or vice versa, if you’re prowling.
Carrie perhaps said it best about these critical mass bike camps. “We’re all alone, but together.” We’re all outstanding, independent folk. Sure, we could head out for a lone wolf weekend in the woods or with just a few friends as usual. But we take a chance, choosing to follow the pack and help everyone who comes along. We share food and liquor and each other’s company. We catch up and ride some bikes.
For the route to Black Diamond Mines and campground details, skip to the end of the page.
If you wanna go to, here are the directions adapted from Adam. It doesn’t mention anything about pushing your bikes up steep dirt roads with sandy and rutted bits in the company of scorpions and rattlesnakes. That you’ll have a great time is implied.
WATER– It will be critical for each person to have good water carrying capacity. There is no water at the campgrounds, though there are pit toilets, so make sure you have enough carrying capacity to keep yourself thoroughly quenched throughout the evening. We’ll top off our waters in Clayton before we enter the park.