Finding a new place to ride is one of the many delights of cycling. The rolling hills and dairy pastures of northwestern Marin County and southern Sonoma offer some of the best opportunities to meander through untraveled roads, find solitude, and admire classic California landscapes.
A short drive and a mildly strenuous hike deliver great rewards at one of the South Bay's most accessible open spaces. Located on the western, urban fringe of Santa Clara County, the Fremont Older Open Space Preserve protects over 739 rugged acres.
While wineries have always been the biggest attraction in Napa, cycling in the valley and the surrounding mountains has gained traction as a choice destination activity in its own right. Whether it be a day trip for locals cyclists or a week-long organized tour, here's how to cycle the winery circuit.
Exploring neighborhoods is an intrinsic part of getting to know any city, whether visiting as a traveler or rambling through a local hood. No doubt one of the more interesting aspects of San Francisco is its geography—it's surrounded by water on three sides and said, like Rome, to be built on seven hills.
For many motivated recreational cyclists the ultimate bike ride (be it a Sunday or not) is to complete their first century – riding 100 miles in one day. An organized century ride is often the easiest (and safest) ways to accomplish this goal.
The Golden Gate National Recreation Area's Oakwood Valley is a perfect hiking spot for a variety of users. Easily accessible from both San Francisco and Marin, the secluded 1.5-mile loop combines a fire road and trail, and passes through mighty eucalyptus groves, verdant meadows, as well as strands of bay laurel and oak interspersed with lush ferns.
It's a simple recipe: Take some of the most beautiful mountain villages you can imagine, add some very untraveled roads traversing dramatic geology, then toss in some of the best Iberian Jamón (ham) and the freshest frutas de mar (seafood) and stir to create a truly delicious Spanish cycling paella.
A geologic inevitability, Devil’s Slide is situated high above the Pacific Ocean between the coastal towns of Pacifica and Halfmoon Bay. For decades, it has been a consistent and persistent headache for local motorists and CalTrans alike, closing Highway 1 innumerable times as sections have slid into the hungry surf below.
Unless you're a South Bay resident, this jewel of a park might be completely off your radar. Plainly visible across the San Francisco Bay from the Bayshore freeway, it's those hills you see silhouetted behind the San Mateo Bridge when driving south to SFO.
A popular local hike, the 4.3 mile trek up to St. Joseph's Hill Open Space Preserve is time and effort well spent; enough that you'll be pondering about when you can make a return visit.
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