A visit to one of the Bay Area’s most scenic vistas is not soon forgotten – getting to it on a bike for the first time is even more memorable. Today we’ll tackle a top tourist attraction that is also a challenge for cyclists of all abilities. A ride up to Hawk Hill is a great bucket list climb – one that elite San Francisco cyclists often incorporate into their weekly training regimes.
The top of Angel Island’s Mt. Livermore provides one of the Bay Area’s most spectacular and least crowded viewpoints. The only access to this centrally located vista rising 788 feet above San Francisco Bay is by ferry and foot, ensuring that only those willing to make the effort get to enjoy it.
For those who want to know more about the joys of road cycling on the Peninsula, look no further than the Western Wheelers Bicycle Club. One of the larger cycling clubs in the Bay Area (established in 1983), they offer an extensive calendar of weekly rides, with as many as five a day.
Draped over 500 acres in the Oakland Hills, with expansive views of San Francisco and the Bay, Joaquin Miller Park is a delightful place to hike among towering redwoods. Operated by the city of Oakland it’s named after its former owner, noted local writer and poet Joaquin Miller.
Head here on a mid-week morning and you’d be hard pressed to find a better spot in the Bay Area to get away from it all. The Gerbode Valley offers a hidden sanctuary mere minutes from downtown SF.
The Bay Trail Plan was adopted by the ABAG (Association of Bay Area Governments) in 1989 with the goal of creating a 500-mile hike around the Bay Area. Now over two thirds complete, there are 338 accesible miles, this hike explores an easy-to-get-to portion of the trail at Oyster Point.
The Cross Marin Trail is a wonderful route for a safe family bike ride. You’ll find it level, smooth-surfaced, and isolated from vehicles as it winds alongside picturesque Lagunitas Creek above the former roadbed of a long defunct railroad.
Easily accessible, the Tomales Bay Trail offers sweeping vistas of Inverness Ridge to the west and Black Mountain to the east.
The counter-clockwise 56-mile loop up to Point Reyes Station takes in a wide variety of the roads and scenery that makes Marin such a special place to spin. There are a few challenging climbs in the 3,800 feet of elevation gain and you’ll have a number of excellent opportunities for pace-lining should you make this a group ride. Expect bucolic scenery and spectacular vistas.
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