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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I'm typically in the East Bay and Peninsula for rides and head down to Santa Cruz when I head towards the South Bay. I've been needing an easier option in the South Bay than always going over 17. Santa Teresa seems to be the perfect distance and finally getting around to checking it out this weekend. A few questions for locals:

  • How long of a ride am I looking at based off of the "full route" provided in link below?
  • Is there a smaller loop you can recommend if the "full route" is longer than 1.5 hours?
  • What bike to bring for a first time visit (the bike that climbs better or the bike that descends better)? Intermediate rider and rather have a bike that climbs better if the climbs are horrible (especially if hot) and be under biked for when it points down.


Thanks ahead of time!
 

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It'll be hot there this weekend! I've only ridden ST a few times. Rocky Ridge and Styles are okay, but to me not worth the effort. Have you ridden John Nicholas and connected it to Skyline? Way more fun in my book (although not Santa Cruz-level fun). I would also consider Rancho-Canada/Calero if you're looking for something different, especially with the directional trails, or even Alum Rock.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
It'll be hot there this weekend! I've only ridden ST a few times. Rocky Ridge and Styles are okay, but to me not worth the effort. Have you ridden John Nicholas and connected it to Skyline? Way more fun in my book (although not Santa Cruz-level fun). I would also consider Rancho-Canada/Calero if you're looking for something different, especially with the directional trails, or even Alum Rock.
Thanks for the input. Yeah, unfortunately with logistics with kids and baby sitting looks like South Bay is my only option or even hotter options going up to Pleasanton. JNT on my list but doesn't seem that much easier than driving over to Santa Cruz. Where's the start point that everyone speaks of? It's an out an back? Time wise? Objective is shorter option than Demo/UC/Wilder that's 30 minutes commute from Fremont and 1.5 to 2 hours max loop.

I've always avoided Alum Rock but that appears the closest.

Thank you, thank you.
 

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I'd recommend removing that last part of that route. Just hop onto the pavement and cruise back to your car. You would be doing an extra climb for a fire road descent. The rest of the loop is fine and can be done in 1.5 hours. I'd recommend a shorter travel bike. The climbs are steep, and the descents are technical but flat. Probably the rockiest place in the Bay Area.
1943368
 

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What Boardman said -- avoid the 3rd part of that route. Obviously it depends on your fitness and where you park, but Rocky Ridge + Styles is ~1.25-1.5hrs. Rocky Ridge alone is ~45min. I used to ride from work so I always came up from Heaton Moor and Bernal, but you can park at the lot (Pueblo Day Use Area) and skip the initial climb.

If you do the full loop, start with Rocky Ridge because the climb sucks a lot, then hit Styles.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I'd recommend removing that last part of that route. Just hop onto the pavement and cruise back to your car. You would be doing an extra climb for a fire road descent. The rest of the loop is fine and can be done in 1.5 hours. I'd recommend a shorter travel bike. The climbs are steep, and the descents are technical but flat. Probably the rockiest place in the Bay Area.

Awesome, thanks for the tips. On paper sounds like it checks the boxes: Close to my "baby sitters," not gone for half a day or more, good workout and some tech.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
What Boardman said -- avoid the 3rd part of that route. Obviously it depends on your fitness and where you park, but Rocky Ridge + Styles is ~1.25-1.5hrs. Rocky Ridge alone is ~45min. I used to ride from work so I always came up from Heaton Moor and Bernal, but you can park at the lot (Pueblo Day Use Area) and skip the initial climb.

If you do the full loop, start with Rocky Ridge because the climb sucks a lot, then hit Styles.
The heat this weekend and talk of the climb has got me thinking about regretting checking it out this weekend. Anyone able to compare it to to suckness of Pleasanton Ridge (foothill) or climbing at Crockett? I guess even Demo Sulphur Springs but that's all shaded; is it Demo Tractor grade?
 

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The heat this weekend and talk of the climb has got me thinking about regretting checking it out this weekend. Anyone able to compare it to to suckness of Pleasanton Ridge (foothill) or climbing at Crockett? I guess even Demo Sulphur Springs but that's all shaded; is it Demo Tractor grade?
Much shorter climbs than P ridge and demo. The climb up to rocky ridge is less than a mile and will take a fit rider 15 minutes or less. Even at a casual pace I'd image no more than 20 minute climb, 6 minute down, with some rollers in between. (This is from the main parking lot. From the bottom where your route starts it will add some climbing)

I think it will be fine to check out this weekend, and there is water in the main parking lot if needed. Worst case is you can always just head downhill back to the car. It's a small park.
 

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The full route you posted is probably 2 hours of riding. It's a good route for checking out most of the park so it's not bad for your 1st visit. IMO Stiles and Rocky Ridge are the main reasons to keep coming back because they're uniquely rocky for the bay area. If you want a shorter loop that includes both those trails you can follow the same route you posted, but when you're done with Rocky Ridge take the shortest route back to your car (from the Pueblo Day Use area take Hidden Springs -> Mine -> Norred -> Joyce).

If you enjoy technical climbing I recommend trying to climb Stiles and Rocky Ridge (Stiles climbs/descends in both directions but northbound is the more difficult climb). Trying to no-dab both is a serious challenge. Instead of riding Stiles and Rocky Ridge as a figure eight like the route you posted, you can do out-and-backs on both to hit them in each direction.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Much shorter climbs than P ridge and demo. The climb up to rocky ridge is less than a mile and will take a fit rider 15 minutes or less. Even at a casual pace I'd image no more than 20 minute climb, 6 minute down, with some rollers in between. (This is from the main parking lot. From the bottom where your route starts it will add some climbing)

I think it will be fine to check out this weekend, and there is water in the main parking lot if needed. Worst case is you can always just head downhill back to the car. It's a small park.
Roger that. Thanks!
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
The full route you posted is probably 2 hours of riding. It's a good route for checking out most of the park so it's not bad for your 1st visit. IMO Stiles and Rocky Ridge are the main reasons to keep coming back because they're uniquely rocky for the bay area. If you want a shorter loop that includes both those trails you can follow the same route you posted, but when you're done with Rocky Ridge take the shortest route back to your car (from the Pueblo Day Use area take Hidden Springs -> Mine -> Norred -> Joyce).

If you enjoy technical climbing I recommend trying to climb Stiles and Rocky Ridge (Stiles climbs/descends in both directions but northbound is the more difficult climb). Trying to no-dab both is a serious challenge. Instead of riding Stiles and Rocky Ridge as a figure eight like the route you posted, you can do out-and-backs on both to hit them in each direction.
Good to know... will try the "no dab" in the future. Thanks!
 

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Climbing styles was MY RIDE in highschool on a cheapo $400 Trek hard tail. I even cleaned it once back then! Some kid with no idea what he was doing and why.

anyways, also check out Ohlone and boundary, easier than RR and styles. But RR and styles are the must. I clock 35 mph on the fireroad from the tower to the top of RR :)
 

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Depending on your fitness level of course but if I had a "climb bike" I would bring that. It makes rocky ridge a little harder but I've always felt the climbs suck at ST. But I'm like 224 on a good day.

There is a lot of exposure there too so I would go when it's earlier or later to avoid the main heat of the day.

Next door Calero is better. I personally enjoy this route when I have a good 2hrs to climb.


But if I get a thirst for some rocks ST is the best option easily accessible in the south bay.
 
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