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Chas Blackford

The Ultimate Sunday Hike: Pinnacles National Park

On January 10, 2013, President Obama signed legislation elevating the Pinnacles to National Park status and giving Bay Area residents their most accessible National Parks for hiking, camping and rock climbing.

The Ultimate Sunday Bike Ride: Angel Island

Map of Angel Island State Park

A day spent on Angel Island is a day well spent. This one of the most historically interesting parks in the State of California, as well as offering (arguably) some of the best views available in any metropolitan area anywhere in the world.

The Ultimate Sunday Hike: Lafayette Reservoir

Lafayette reservoir from the dam.

The Lafayette Reservoir has long been a popular recreation destination for hikers, joggers, fishing, boating, and picnicking from all over the East Bay.

The Ultimate Sunday Bike Ride: China Camp State Park

The view Northeast from the Shoreline Trail in China Camp.

Today’s ride takes us off the pavement and onto the dirt to China Camp State Park in Marin County, located along the Southwestern edge of San Pablo Bay. The park and its extensive trail system offer sweeping views to the North across the water to nearby Mt. Burdell and the shores of Sonoma County and on a clear day, Mt. Saint Helena can be seen rising high above Napa. We’ll ride one of the sweetest four miles of single track the North Bay has to offer: The Shoreline Trail.

The Ultimate Sunday Hike: Wilder Ranch Santa Cruz

Today's scenic jaunt, at Wilder Ranch State Historic Park located just north of Santa Cruz on the Pacific Coast, is a wonderful hike that will appeal to people and families of all ages.

The Ultimate Sunday Bike Ride: Sweeney Ridge

Sweeney Ridge Map

Today’s ride will be a test of your climbing legs as we venture to the top of one of the more little known areas of the GGNRA in San Mateo county, Sweeney Ridge. Although it has been immortalized in one of the many iconic posters from the Parks Conservancy, it gets nowhere near the visitors other areas of the park receive.

Ultimate Sunday Hike: Tennessee Valley Trail

As one of more the popular hikes in the Golden Gate National Recreation Area, this lovely 1.9 mile stroll down to Tennessee Cove makes for a great family hike. I find it pretty special that you can drive 15 minutes north of San Francisco, step out of your vehicle and within a matter of 100 yards escape to a virtual wilderness area, with few indications of civilization.

The Ultimate Sunday Bike Ride: Briones Regional Park Loop

It might be said that for many Bay Area riders and residents, the East Bay is regarded as one giant mass of endlessly developed land that stretches to Livermore and beyond to I-5. However, within all that alleged sprawl there lies plenty of hidden parks, tranquil valleys and rural areas just waiting for your exploration. This particular ride provides an introduction to all three and takes us on a circumnavigation of Briones Regional Park, at 6100 acres one of the crown jewels of the East Bay park system.

The Ultimate Sunday Bike Ride: Briones Regional Park Loop

Briones Map

It might be said that for many Bay Area riders and residents, the East Bay is regarded as one giant mass of endlessly developed land that stretches to Livermore and beyond, to I-5. However, within all that alleged sprawl there lies plenty of hidden parks, tranquil valleys and rural areas just waiting for your exploration.

Five Great Bikes for Holiday Self-Gifting

The Yeti Big Top 29er

The holidays seem to bring out a lot of different qualities in people, ranging from overt outpourings of generosity to incredible instances of selfishness and greed. Fortunately, we tend to see more of the former, and perhaps even sense a trend as a growing segment embraces the notion that an economy based entirely on consumer consumption is unsustainable. That said, to get in the proper frame of mind for this article, we suggest you suspend any shopping repression tendencies and start thinking of yourself. We're talking about self-gifting here, people.

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