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    1. The trails I mention in this post are spread out across the Bay Area, so there’s no one place to go or park. I recommend downloading the TrailForks app or looking at the TrailForks website to get a better idea of where each network is.

  1. Hi Becky,
    I’ve been reading your posts/adventures for quite awhile now and have thoroughly enjoyed them (and agree with most of your thoughts about the trails I’ve had the pleasure of exploring (Hurricane, Bend, Downieville, Bentonville, Sedona, Hurricane, Dupont, etc.). Since you included Soquel in Santa Cruz, another Demonstration State Forest to the north in Mendocino County is the Jackson (JDSF), an area highlight. The claim is almost 100 miles of trails ( beautifully located in the redwoods (and a bit of the pygmy forest too). Many forest roads (mostly closed to vehicle traffic) connect the beautiful flowy singletrack trails. Trails not to be missed include Manly, Forest History, Observatory, Big Tree, Sweet Pea, Lindquist Loops, and Ride Thru.
    thanks for all your blogs!!!
    Here are a couple ride suggestions:

    1. Thanks for the tips! I’ve actually heard of Jackson demo forest and was supposed to check it out a few years ago, but plans got derailed. I’ll definitely add it to my list next time I’m back in CA. The routes look great!

  2. Thanks to trail maintenance, Crockett Hills is in good condition right now. I suggest you check it out.

    Sugar City and Tree Frog are the highlights. Soaring Eagle, Wood Rat, and Edwards Creek are fun descents.

  3. Great list!

    Definitely check out Skyline Wilderness Park (technical, single track and double track), Moore Creek Park (single track and double track, water crossings), and Las Posadas park (more wooded singletrack) in Napa Valley – all possess excellent vistas and great climbs.

    1. Agreed re: Skyline! Just rode it a couple weeks back and it was epic. Just make sure to hit it early before it gets too hot!

      Another sort-of-hidden gem is the new-ish Sonoma Ridge trail at Jack London state park. Parking is $7 but if you start from the bottom at the lake service fire road and climb mountain trail up to Sonoma Ridge climb you will be rewarded with a heck of a view of the valley’s, downtown SF from a distance and a super-fun mostly-smooth downhill out-and-back. Check it out!

  4. So I somehow ended up on your blog after a random Google suggestion – I’m hoping I can someday hit a fraction of the places you’ve been outside of the Bay Area!

    Ever since the pandemic hit, I’ve been trying to come up with creative, comprehensive routes for as many Bay Area riding spots as possible – on both the gravel bike and the mountain bike. Have you done much riding in Del Valle (Livermore), Mount Tam, or Big Rock Ridge and Ponti Ridge in Marin yet?

    1. Thanks so much for reading! The Bay Area does have some good riding if you’re willing to seek it out 🙂 I haven’t ridden in those areas yet – are they worth checking out?

      1. Hi Becky! I never got notified of your response – glad I checked up!

        I feel like each of those places are totally worth checking out. Mount Tam is one of my favorites – there’s actually a decent amount of legal singletrack, and has what I feel is one of the most scenic singletrack descents in the Bay Area (Coastal View).

        Del Valle is wonderful in the spring, with singletrack rolling through hills covered in green grass and wildflowers. Everyone I’ve taken up there has been blown away by the beauty of it – the singletrack is fun to ride as well!

        I’ve been doing it on my gravel bike, but a friend who did the same loop on his MTB was glad he had the extra gearing and tire volume.

        Big Rock and Ponti intimidated me for a while, as I didn’t think there was a reasonable climb to the top. Turns out the Big Rock singletrack climb is pretty mellow – the grades start to shoot up near the top, but it’s not unreasonable with mtb gearing. The views from the top are some of my favorites in the Bay Area.

        I like combining it with Loma Alta, on the other side of Lucas Valley Road. Smith Ridge is a grind of a climb up, while 680 is a fun descent that is part singletrack, diving in and out of tree cover after providing stellar views near the top:

        Hope these give you some ideas!

  5. Lime Ridge on the shoulder of Mt. Diablo has the best singletracks and drops around Walnut Creek area. Intermediate trails you can do laps on (Thorn Alley, Back 9 and Middle), a diy bike park with a couple fun jumps hidden across the street and an old quarry where you find STEEP and fun drops. Crockett Hills has Sugar City and Tree Frog, both good flow with Sugar City the best jumps and Tree Frog a little ponderous and not fast enough for me. Briones has great high speed single track (mostly legal!) that you kind of have to explore to find.

    Read your post on Quincy and Mt Hough a while back. Rode that before the recent fire (very sad). Super fun with the shuttle! Thanks for all the info

    1. Thanks, Max! I’ve heard good things about Crockett, but I’ll have to check out the other areas. Glad you enjoyed Mt. Hough – fingers crossed they’ll have the trails cleaned up by next year…

  6. Great summary! You have some elevation typos for the Tamarancho Loop…just doing the loop, there’s about 1550 ft of elevation. Cheers!

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