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I will be at LAX (imperial blvd) the first two weeks of February and have a weekend to kill. I am completely ignorant of this area and was hoping that someone could point me towards some decent trails and a good shop to rent a bike. Looking for singletrack and am willing to drive 2-3 hours to get in about 20-30 miles of riding. I am looking for XC, not interested in downhill or free ride stuff, but am not afraid of climbing and getting in a few nice downhills. A nice little adventure that I can brag to my east coast friends.

My other option is to head to the mountains and try to get in some skiing but I don't know what type of rental car I will get or if it will have chains, etc..... Do the roads to the ski areas normally require chains in February? Sorry, I am completely ignorant to this area.
 

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Lots of riding options, north, south and east! I'm most familiar with the Santa Monica mountains. You could get the miles you are looking for in Cheeseboro Canyon - you'd want to loop around to Palo Comado, maybe down the Bell Canyon singletrack to Las Virgenes Canyon. (You could get lost back there, so make sure you know where you are going first.) Not quite as many miles but another great ride would be Backbone Trail from Kanan Road (inland of Malibu) to Corral Canyon (you could add on the trail to the west, too, if you want more miles). This is not as popular as Cheeseboro, and all singletrack, really nice. My first choice for you might be Chumash/Johnson/Hummingbird in Simi Valley. If it is clear, you'll have great views, and the trails are sweet (and a bit more technical than the other trails mentioned - not sure of your skill level). There are also nice trails in Pt. Mugu State Park at Sycamore Canyon - and that has the advantage of starting down at Pacific Coast Highway on the beach if you choose, so you could kick back on the sand and enjoy the ocean after the ride!
 
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