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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Me and a friend were thinking of doing a long, 'epic' ride in the Mt. Tam area some time soon. I've ridden some trails there not many, but staring at the map I came up with the following loop:

-Start in Fairfax
-Do CCW loop of Tamarancho
-Cross over to Deer Park/Shaver
-Little loop around Lake Lagunitas, then up Eldridge to East Peak
-Down Old Railroad & Old Stage to Pantoll ranger station
-Down Coastal to Highway 1
-A bit of 1 North, then up Lone Tree
-Pantoll & East Ridge Crest roads to Rock Spring rd.
-Rocky Ridge & Bullfrog to Fairfax-Bolinas rd.
-A little up the tarmac to Truck rd
-Left on Pine Mountain, loop around '17 Knolls' until you get to Repack
-Ride down repack and back into Fairfax

It's about 60 miles and 8k feet according to MapMyRide , should keep us busy for the day I think.

What do you think, is this a good day's entertainment? Are we missing some good trails or taking really boring ones? I'd love to hear suggestions. We could start/end somewhere else, in fact we're not even bound to Mt. Tam. It just seemed like a good place to do a ride like this because a) I'm not sure how much we can do in a day, this area makes it easy to take shortcuts or add extra loops, and b) it's close to our East Bay homes so we don't have to get up ridiculously early to start at the crack of dawn.
 

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Going big in Marin . . .

My old training ride was Fairfax to E Peak-Tam via Eldridge, Ridgecrest Blvd. (for ocean view) to Bolinas Ridge FR. Take Bo Ridge either to Shafter FR or Jewell Tr. Ascend (at Shafter Bridge) to San Geronimo Ridge to Tamarancho. Do as many laps of Tamarancho as you can. Return to Fairfax. Beer thirty.

One day we felt perky and took Eldridge to E Peak. Dropped to Muir Beach & returned via Green Gulch Tr to RR Grade then back up to Tam Summit, then out to Bo Ridge as per above, back to Fairfax. That took some effort.

I thought I was OK for riding 4 Peaks -Tam, Pine Mtn, Loma Alta, Big Rock. But friends of mine did SEVEN Peaks by adding Mt Vision, Barnaby . . . and Mt Burdell. I would not have survived that.

So many routes, so little daylight. Kudos if you do it in the snow!
 

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Go for a Ride
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Not really into doing loops all day so I'd go with a route like Fairfaxian suggested. The cross county ride Burdell, Big Rock, Loma Alta, and Tam gets about 10k climbing and 60-70 miles round trip.

Don't ride Loma Alta when it's muddy or you'll be doing some serious hiking.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks for those tips about Big Rock, Loma Alta etc, I'll look up where these places are.
We were thinking of doing this in two weeks or so, hopefully it has dried a little then. Anyway we'll treat the trails with respect.
 

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Sounds like a really good loop but I'd take a closer look at Lone Tree. I don't think it's there anymore. I'd probably drop down Highway 1 and then climb Diaz Ridge. From there it's a short climb back to RR Grade on the Road. That kinda puts you on the wrong side of mountain though.

Might be better off dropping from East Peak on RR Grade to double Bowknot, out to the road for a bit then going down Diaz Ridge and up Coastal back to Pantoll and up from there.

If I'm wrong about Lone Tree disregard but I'm pretty sure its gone.
 

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screamer
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etuck said:
Sounds like a really good loop but I'd take a closer look at Lone Tree. I don't think it's there anymore. I'd probably drop down Highway 1 and then climb Diaz Ridge. From there it's a short climb back to RR Grade on the Road. That kinda puts you on the wrong side of mountain though.

Might be better off dropping from East Peak on RR Grade to double Bowknot, out to the road for a bit then going down Diaz Ridge and up Coastal back to Pantoll and up from there.

If I'm wrong about Lone Tree disregard but I'm pretty sure its gone.
Slight change, but I'd recommend going down Coastal & up Diaz. That singletrack down from Pantoll along Coastal is a hoot. Just be careful of hikers on the weekend, since there are a couple of blind corners.
 

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Lone tree FR is no more (the tree is gone too). As stated above, an ultra loop could include "bonus miles" to Muir beach. Going down Coastal View trail & up the new Diaz Ridge is quality stuff. Get back up to East Peak then head north. You will see just about every type of terrain Marin Has to offer. The fun part is looking (way) back at Tam from points north knowing you have just been there (maybe 2x).

I did about 53 or so miles of this when I turned 50. (and longer versions since then) But can't reel in the ultra epics like I used-to-could. Every spring I start with a long ride just to see if all cylinders still firing.

Extra points for going single speed or CX!

Pedal or Perish!
 

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NedwannaB
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Nice!

Fairfaxian said:
You will see just about every type of terrain Marin Has to offer. The fun part is looking (way) back at Tam from points north knowing you have just been there (maybe 2x).

Every spring I start with a long ride just to see if all cylinders still firing.

Extra points for going single speed or CX!

Pedal or Perish!
Can't wait for it too. Definitely not springlike conditions up around there this weekend. :cool:
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Fairfaxian said:
Lone tree FR is no more (the tree is gone too)!
Thanks for the heads up! When did that disappear? And how? I bought the MCBC map last fall and it's still on there. Any other roads on there that are no more?

I had been thinking about dias ridge/gravity car as an alternative, and then cutting out the first climb to the peak by going over to Hoo-Koo-E-Koo from Eldridge. That or substitute Lone Tree with Willow Camp, which is supposed to be a really steep climb.
 

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ak77 said:
Thanks for the heads up! When did that disappear? And how? I bought the MCBC map last fall and it's still on there. Any other roads on there that are no more?

I had been thinking about dias ridge/gravity car as an alternative, and then cutting out the first climb to the peak by going over to Hoo-Koo-E-Koo from Eldridge. That or substitute Lone Tree with Willow Camp, which is supposed to be a really steep climb.
A good way to work in Willow is to do Tamo/Bolinas Ridge and then head down McCurdy to PCH and then up Willow. It is indeed a challenging climb but the views are fantastic all the way up. After that head to Coastal/Dias and you will have a nice big ride going.

If it's a cloudy weekday you might throw in Matt Davis trail for kicks.:eek:
 

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NedwannaB
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Direction?

fourarm said:
A good way to work in Willow is to do Tamo/Bolinas Ridge and then head down McCurdy to PCH and then up Willow. It is indeed a challenging climb but the views are fantastic all the way up. After that head to Coastal/Dias and you will have a nice big ride going.

If it's a cloudy weekday you might throw in Matt Davis trail for kicks.:eek:
Sorry Tamo is? I like the McCurdy/PCH/Willow route, but from which way on Bol Ridge, from Tam heading West, or Olema heading East?

Thanks.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Thanks for all the tips! I've not yet decided on the final route but there's just so many possibilities!
Looks like we'll be doing this on March 13, if anyone else is up for it you're welcome, PM me if you want to join.
 

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One small detail: if it's a sunny weekend during prime time, I'd suggest the CW Tamarancho loop rather than the CCW. I find that on weekend going CW makes for ride with fewer interruptions.

It's a big ride you are planning, and I believe your MapMyRide estimate falls quite short on the elevation gains. Just a few days ago from Fairfax I was criss-crossing some ridges and peaks for three or four hours: Lagunitas, Pine Mountain, Bolinas Ridge, etc... and I logged in 9000 feet elevation gain (refined altitude). And that was a much shorter ride.
 

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No offense intended but If you did 9k of climbing in 3 or 4 hours you are a beast! Tam top to bottom is 2,500ish and is the biggest mountain around. I've found it pretty difficult to get to 8kish in Marin without being on the bike all freaking day.

No question though, the Pine Mountain area is a good place to rack them up. Original posters elevation estimates sound about right to me.

Totally agree on Tamarancho unless you are just trying to do a half loop and get out of these, which is my usual route when headed to Pine Mountain.
 

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NedwannaB
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ditto here

etuck said:
No offense intended but If you did 9k of climbing in 3 or 4 hours you are a beast! Tam top to bottom is 2,500ish and is the biggest mountain around. I've found it pretty difficult to get to 8kish in Marin without being on the bike all freaking day.

No question though, the Pine Mountain area is a good place to rack them up. Original posters elevation estimates sound about right to me.

Totally agree on Tamarancho unless you are just trying to do a half loop and get out of these, which is my usual route when headed to Pine Mountain.
my response was 9k......wowzerz! :thumbsup:
 

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New favorite Tam route for a winter, social, ss route.

Railroad Grade - West Pt. Inn - East Peak - West Pt. Inn - OGC - Pantoll - Coastal - Pelican Inn - Diaz Ridge (or Middle Green Gulch - Fireroad - Ridge st) - Pipeline - Tenderfoot.

Hair under 4,000' and 20 odd miles.

Photo courtesy of tburger on Coastal
 

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