Trail advise for Newport Beach area?
Hello all, and thanks in advancee for any assistance. I am headed out of the AZ heat for a few days of the 4th weekend, and am bringing my Turner 5 Spot. I am an intermediate/Advanced rider that likes a good climb and great views for the payoff. I was doing a little research on trails in the area and wanted some local input. My question is: If you only had time for 2 rides in the area of NB what would they be?
Laguna Coast Wilderness / El Moro - long(er) grindy fireroad climbs with some gnar for downs if you know where to find them
Aliso Woods & Canyon - shorter punchier climbs, can be cooler in the AM, has some fun tech downs
Santiago Oaks - shorter ups, shorter downs, good tech, hotter
Can loop LCW and Aliso together if you're feeling frisky (and up for a 1.5 mile close to 20% average grade grinder w/ no shade).
While you're leaving 120 degree heat, don't be surprised to see 100 even this close to the ocean. Best get your ride on early (6AM starts is what a lot of guys around here do).
Spot on, probis.
Hit it early and bag the highest peak in Orange County--Santiago Peak (Santa Ana Mountains). Depending on air conditions, you can see as far as San Diego and LA from there. Numerous ways up and down the mountain, but for less than advanced skills I reco Holy Jim out and back (Upper Holy Jim, a bit more technical, is an option coming back). ±16 mi round trip from the Holy Jim Parking Area closest to the trail start. A few mi of fire road going the HJ way; more coming up other routes to the peak.
Gotta spend a day at Aliso Woods and/or Laguna Coast Wilderness Park, but get there early to avoid crowds more than heat. Very popular. Some great views from the ridge tops around LCWP, but at Aliso Woods the best view will be the parking area at Top of the World in Laguna Beach (one of the two main THs). Some great trails: LCWP: Rattlesnake, Emerald Falls, Old Emerald, Laguna Ridge (harder). Aliso: Rock-It, Car Wreck, Meadows. LCWP is more rolling terrain overall; Aliso more bombing into a canyon and climbing out.
Those outings would yield classic "mountain" biking in a national forest, plus some classic beach-area trails in state park(s). Maybe hook up with The Path bike shop for one of their weekend rides--pretty sure they do em Sat and Sun. Note that the Santa Anas offer much more space for users to disperse compared to the beach (esp Aliso Woods).
If you're looking to ride with someone in the Holy Jim area, send me a PM. Your AZ brethren have been good to us on trips to the desert, so I owe y'all one.
PM me if you want to get out this weekend. My group is an early start time bunch.
Vote with your feet.
No bike is perfect!
C'mon, nobody mentioned the San Juan Trail?! It gets hot--but not AZ hot. It does get a fair amount of shuttlers, so starting early would still be prudent to miss most of those guys. It's about 12 miles round trip to Cocktail Rock, and you can add the Lollipop Loop for some more miles and tech. Check out mountainbikerbill's site for info and a map. Enjoy!
Because we like the taste of freedom; because we like the smell of danger. ~ E. Abbey
Good advice, dv. Your presence in SoCal is missed!
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