hello bay area! newb to the forum looking for hidden gems- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
    bay area CA
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    hello bay area! newb to the forum looking for hidden gems

    hey all, im a newbie to this forum but not to biking, i joined up to find some hidden gems in the bay area. i have been riding bikes since the mid 90's, mostly BMX, but ive also always mountained biked as well to stay in shape. because of injury and now that my 20's are winding down im finding a new love for mountain biking and transitioning from full time BMXer/part time MTBer, to full time MTBer/part time BMXer. im looking for some hidden singletrack gems in the bay area and in the rest of the nor-cal area, so if you have a little slice of heaven nobody knows about id love it if you could share. i promise not to tell anyone else!

    right now my main rig is an 03 GT avalanche. i know its a little old and a lot of people hate on GT's but i love it. im a 26" hardtail purist, dont have a desire for rear suspension, call me old school, or just old. i am looking into upgrading to a newer ride, possibly a GT or a kona.

    so yeah, just looking to get a little more knoweldge on the MTB scene and maybe meeting up with some fellow mountainbikers. have a great day everyone.

  2. #2
    Snowjnky McDreamy
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    Demonstration Forrest in the Los Gatos/Santa Cruz Mountains
    Brother Seamus?
    Like an Irish monk?
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  3. #3
    don't try this at home
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    just check in here occasionally and you'll see rides posted for all over the place.

    welcome to the forum.
    will you rep me?

  4. #4
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    If your 20's are winding down and you like hardtail 26" bikes, then you're just old school not old. Because if you're old, then I'm a fossil and we can't have that.

  5. #5
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    Most likly I'll be riding Demo Forest Saturday. It will be a slow ride 4hours for one loop.

  6. #6
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    Do you know about this place in Belmont? Behind a high school.

    Well, theres also Waterdog lake next door. Hidden gem for those living/working in MidPen. One moment you are blasting singletrack, and then you are riding right next to someone's backyard. All legal.

  7. #7
    Spin-stabilized
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    If you're in the bay area...

    Two places that you'll either love or hate. Makes them stand out to me and I love both. They're almost polar opposites.

    Henry Coe SP: miles and miles of epic singletrack but you gotta pay to play. Requires multi-mile climbs to get to the goods but the place is epic. It's appropriately dubbed "The Wilderness Next Door". It's like a giant playground for those that don't mind a little pain.

    Rockville in Fairfield: Far from being a secret is this postage stamp-sized, fun park that's a maze of technical singletrack. Probably has the highest density of naturally technical terrain and lines in the bay area. PM me if you want a good, fluid route around this maze. And yes, a hardtail works just fine there.
    Hey man, wanna go for a klunk?

  8. #8
    mtbr member
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    Quote Originally Posted by LONO100 View Post
    i joined up to find some hidden gems in the bay area.
    I suppose that means you're either not interested in the non-hidden gems or already know them all. Very well then...

    Here are a few that might qualify as hidden gems:

    Looking for local rides? You'll find plenty on my website: Bay Area Mountain Bike Rides.

  9. #9
    Weird huh?
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    hmmmm, hardtail, no suspension.....the legions grow! Soon, world domination!

    El Cid is Spanish for The Cid..
    cmdrpiffle 7 points 1 day ago
    Cinco de Mayo is Spanish for Cinco de Mayo

  10. #10
    bay area CA
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    thanks for all the replies everyone, i can tell this is going to be a fun forum experience for me. demo park sounds awesome but im allthe way up here in solano county. hey bailout, i live in fairfield and have done rockville plenty of times especially in my teenage days. i havent been there too much since they started charging money to use it and since we moved right next to where the new lowe's is being built, im just a short ride away from pena adobe, plus they dont charge. i heard rockville has really gotten nicer in the last few years so maybe i can ride it some time soon.

    hairylegs, i might not be old by years but i have a ton of miles on me! thanks again everyone for sharing your hidden gems and welcoming me. hopefully in 2012 i can hit these spots up and possibly meet some of you:

  11. #11
    bay area CA
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    btw, yes, the legions of hardtailers will grow! i will admit, i do prefer a front suspension. other than that im pretty barebones, i dont have all the fancy gear or clothing. i run a pretty basic bike, no camelpack, i dont have the fancy shoes, i run bmx platform pedals, nikes, cut off shirt, cargo shorts, a backpack full of water and a little determination. so if we ever do get the chance to ride one together please try not to clown me too hard! my favorite rides that ive done since ive jumped back in are the bolinas ridge/marin cross trail, china camp lake, and lake chabot. hope to catch you guys soon.

  12. #12
    YOUREGO ISNOT YOURAMIGO
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    Quote Originally Posted by LONO100 View Post
    hey all, im a newbie to this forum but not to biking, i joined up to find some hidden gems in the bay area. i have been riding bikes since the mid 90's, mostly BMX, but ive also always mountained biked as well to stay in shape. because of injury and now that my 20's are winding down im finding a new love for mountain biking and transitioning from full time BMXer/part time MTBer, to full time MTBer/part time BMXer. im looking for some hidden singletrack gems in the bay area and in the rest of the nor-cal area, so if you have a little slice of heaven nobody knows about id love it if you could share. i promise not to tell anyone else!

    right now my main rig is an 03 GT avalanche. i know its a little old and a lot of people hate on GT's but i love it. im a 26" hardtail purist, dont have a desire for rear suspension, call me old school, or just old. i am looking into upgrading to a newer ride, possibly a GT or a kona.

    so yeah, just looking to get a little more knoweldge on the MTB scene and maybe meeting up with some fellow mountainbikers. have a great day everyone.
    Beat it.
    Nothin here to see.
    Move along.

  13. #13
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    @[email protected] there is alot to convey. But Im in sonoma county, so knowing your area is close I will keep my suggestions local. Solano really is devoid of quality riding, no offense Ive tried some places there like rockville and its just not a compairision verse what lies close to you. Try Skyline in napa, Oat Mine Road in Calistoga, Annadel in Santa Rosa, Mt Hood in Kenwood (ALOT of climbing) China Camp in San Rafeal, Shiloh in Windsor, Willow Creek in Duncan's Mills, Boggs in Lake County. Those all have good single track in varying amounts. Annadel is a fav of mine and has alot of quality singletracks. Although its rough. Just ask if you want a specific thing or routes, since we should all support each other.....gordo..... hahahaha. BTW I attached some photos of some of the places mentioned.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails hello bay area! newb to the forum looking for hidden gems-dscf3931.jpg  

    hello bay area! newb to the forum looking for hidden gems-dscf3914.jpg  

    hello bay area! newb to the forum looking for hidden gems-dscf3834.jpg  

    hello bay area! newb to the forum looking for hidden gems-dscf3927.jpg  

    hello bay area! newb to the forum looking for hidden gems-panoramic.jpg  

    Last edited by GRR gravity riders; 01-10-2012 at 07:22 PM. Reason: want to attach photos

  14. #14
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    If you want to meet a new group of riders ,show up at Rockville on Sat.the 14th, The Bicycle Trails Council of The East Bay (btceb.org) is doing the monthly Gala ride there. There will be a,b,and c level rides with leaders and sweeps . Meet about 9, ride about 9:30 until noon .Refreshments after .

  15. #15
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    Over a dozen replies and nobody has mentioned Tamarancho? Yes, you need to pay for access, but it's so worth it (especially if you get a one or two year pass).

  16. #16
    bay area CA
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    no offense taken, thats why im looking for more trails. i have a truck so im not worried about a little driving. those are some sweet pictures, ive got some good ones of the bolinas ridge when i was out there last summer. rockville is good for its technical aspect but not much for scenery. ill usually get my reps in at nearby pena adobe park on my work days. not anything special but i can ride to it from my house. im def going to check out all of these spots. hope to see some of you guys out there though i doubt it being that i work the graveyard shift so im usually out riding when people are at work. thanks again everyone.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by splatworldwide View Post
    Over a dozen replies and nobody has mentioned Tamarancho?
    See, that's just the thing: Call me pedantic, but the original question was about hidden gems. Tamarancho is hardly a little-known option. It's at the top of many local riders' favorites lists.

    By that same token, nobody has yet mentioned Joaquin Miller, Skeggs Point, Wilder Ranch, or Saratoga Gap on this thread either. All great "gems", but none of them really "hidden"...
    Looking for local rides? You'll find plenty on my website: Bay Area Mountain Bike Rides.

  18. #18
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    If you're in Solano, cruise up to Auburn and hit Clementine to Culvert and Confluence. Hardly hidden, but a ton of fun Lots of other stuff up that way too.

  19. #19
    Spin-stabilized
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    Quote Originally Posted by LONO100 View Post
    thanks for all the replies everyone, i can tell this is going to be a fun forum experience for me. demo park sounds awesome but im allthe way up here in solano county. hey bailout, i live in fairfield and have done rockville plenty of times especially in my teenage days. i havent been there too much since they started charging money to use it and since we moved right next to where the new lowe's is being built, im just a short ride away from pena adobe, plus they dont charge. i heard rockville has really gotten nicer in the last few years so maybe i can ride it some time soon.

    hairylegs, i might not be old by years but i have a ton of miles on me! thanks again everyone for sharing your hidden gems and welcoming me. hopefully in 2012 i can hit these spots up and possibly meet some of you:
    Well, they replaced the steep fire road climb out of the main gate with a nice mellow trail. I didn't care much for the old fireroad except the new trail killed a couple of fun chutes. They also built a nice connector over the hill from the bottom of the rockgarden to the outside loop. The main trails are also signed now and not a lot of trail sanitation has occurred. Suburban sprawl abuts the southwestern edge of the park now though. Good views of cul de sacs from upper tilley
    Hey man, wanna go for a klunk?

  20. #20
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    Bailout

    Thinking of riding rockville tomorrow. You have any ride recommendations? Looking for a 1.5 hour ride. Any inside info would be great.

    thanks

  21. #21
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    Bailout

    Thinking of riding rockville tomorrow. You have any ride recommendations? Looking for a 1.5 hour ride. Any inside info would be great.

    thanks

  22. #22
    ballbuster
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    Yeah, hidden... well, how hidden? We do not publicly condone less-than-legal rides (F!ght C1ub rules), but there are many lesser known perfectly legal rides.

    I've been riding Dimond Canyon a lot, up to JMP and Redwood. From there, you can string an all-day'er to Chabot, Tilden, Mt. Diablo, and beyond. JMP has the great singletrack without driving too far. Briones is just over the bridge from you. Not much legal singletrack up there, but good leg busting climbs and amazing views.

    But yeah, you have Rockville in your backyard. Just man up and pay the $4 (or whatever it is now) and go have fun. Heck, I spent more on a single bottle of beer. I spent twice that on watching a crappy movie that was shorter than a good ride up there, and a lot less memorable.

    Look at it as cheap entertainment.

    BTW, there is a BTCEB group ride at Rockville on Saturday, IIRC. Hook up with those folks for a good time, and to meet like-minded folks who can show you more good stuff in the area.

    May by the Bay is coming up too. Keep an eye on these boards. We'll do (semi) organized group rides all over the Bay Area, followed by camping and riding at Boggs Demo Forrest near Cobb.

    My first intro to MTBR folks was at May by the Bay in 2001. I rode with JRM, Fast Eddy and lots of other folks the days if the Wilder and Annadel rides.

    There are folks here you can hook up with for rides to the more distant locales if you want to carpool, or are limited to bike transportation.
    Last edited by pimpbot; 01-13-2012 at 12:06 PM.

  23. #23
    bay area CA
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    thanks bot, im not looking for any trespassing needed rides, just stuff you wont find in a book. i just hate paying for rockville being that i used to ride it for free as a kid and with pena adobe park just a 20 minute bike ride away, i dont even have to bring my truck and its free! the tracks arent nearly as good as rockville, but its not as crowded and i like the hill climbs for cardio.

  24. #24
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    Castle Rock if you haven't already been! Carry on it for a while and eventually it will payoff.

  25. #25
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    where is castle rock?

  26. #26
    Ride More - Suffer Less
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    MT Diablo Foothills

    Several ways to get to Castle rock area. Borges Ranch on Walnut Creek Side, or a few entrances in Rudgear, Livorna Rd area which gets you to the twins ponds loop or the creek run....Macedo Ranch from Alamo. More options depending on what ride you want to put together...

    Google Map Here

  27. #27
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    I wouldn't call Paradise Royale exactly hidden... but it is off the beaten path. It's also a good drive North for you (Up the 101 to Garberville/Redway then out towards Shelter Cove).

    Check it out if you have time to drive up and camp at Tolkan Creek Campground right on the trail! Overnight is $8 with brick pit pots, water, and... A NICE BIKE PARK!
    This is out in the King Range wilderness but easily driven to by most any car (I drive my Prius out there with two bikes on the back and people/gear inside).

    I mention this because of it's location, which sorta makes it a hidden gem... it's definitely a gem though... hidden or not!

    BLM Paradise Royal Mountain Bike Trail, Arcata Field Office, Bureau of Land Management

    While you're up there, you can probably hook up with locals in Ukiah for their 'hidden gems'.
    Last edited by wsmac; 01-14-2012 at 12:26 AM.

  28. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by LONO100 View Post
    where is castle rock?
    Walnut Creek. It's Castle Rock State Park.
    Exit 680N at Ygnacio Valley Rd.
    Turn right onto Ygnacio Valley Rd.
    Go a few miles and turn right onto Walnut Ave.
    Turn right at the roundabout (end of the road) onto Castle Rock Rd.
    Drive to the very end of Castle Rock Rd. (I mean the very end, you'll see a brown gate and a state park sign designating Castle Rock State Park)

    Park there and when you start biking just follow the road. the road eventually turns into gravel and just keep following it, when you hit the cattle gate there will be a little hill, that's the start of the trail. Word of advice, when you get to the top of the hill, go left and ride. I recommend at least front suspension. At times, the trail gets incredibly bumpy by my standards.

    There are also caves...lots and lots of caves! They're not big by any means but they're big enough for a little spelunking.

    EDIT: the best part? it's FREEEEEEE!!
    You can't jump what you can't see. The Eyeball Regeneration Society, for life's visual moments.

  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ram4.0 View Post
    Walnut Creek. It's Castle Rock State Park.
    Exit 680N at Ygnacio Valley Rd.
    Turn right onto Ygnacio Valley Rd.
    Go a few miles and turn right onto Walnut Ave.
    Turn right at the roundabout (end of the road) onto Castle Rock Rd.
    Drive to the very end of Castle Rock Rd. (I mean the very end, you'll see a brown gate and a state park sign designating Castle Rock State Park)
    Minor correction: Castle Rock State Park is in the Peninsula, around where Skyline Boulevard and Route 9 intersects. The park you're referring to in Walnut Creek is informally Castle Rock Park (as Google Maps labels it), but more accurately, Castle Rock Regional Recreation Area which is a tiny area within Diablo Foothills Regional Park. Most interesting mountain bikes there actually extend well beyond the "Castle Rock" area and into the rest of the Diablo Foothills park, if not into the adjoining Mount Diablo State Park.
    Looking for local rides? You'll find plenty on my website: Bay Area Mountain Bike Rides.

  30. #30
    bay area CA
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    thanks guys, im going to try the castle rock near walnut creek this thursday. paradise royale i will try out when summer hits.

  31. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by erginguney View Post
    Minor correction: Castle Rock State Park is in the Peninsula, around where Skyline Boulevard and Route 9 intersects. The park you're referring to in Walnut Creek is informally Castle Rock Park (as Google Maps labels it), but more accurately, Castle Rock Regional Recreation Area which is a tiny area within Diablo Foothills Regional Park. Most interesting mountain bikes there actually extend well beyond the "Castle Rock" area and into the rest of the Diablo Foothills park, if not into the adjoining Mount Diablo State Park.
    ^ what he said.


    Quote Originally Posted by LONO100 View Post
    thanks guys, im going to try the castle rock near walnut creek this thursday. paradise royale i will try out when summer hits.
    sweet! Castle Rock isn't the longest thing but it'll give your suspension a work out and there's some cool views if you climb the right paths.
    You can't jump what you can't see. The Eyeball Regeneration Society, for life's visual moments.

  32. #32
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    Thanks bailout had a nice ride at Rockville, it's worth checking out if you've never been. All singletrack with different options.

    I need to check out castle rock new to the WC. Some other places I've heard of close by are lime ridge and shell ridge. Most of the single track is illegal. But good views of downtown and valley.

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