Mountain Bike Reviews Forum banner

1 - 16 of 16 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
12 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey everyone - wondering if you have any recommendations for a newbie (today was my first day out) on some good trails or parks for a beginner? The place I went to today was definitely not a good spot for a beginner. I found myself have to get off my bike a TON and walk it up a slope. And I also was pulling over a lot to let other riders fly by. Any suggestions on some good places in the South Bay would be much appreciated. I'm down in San Jose.

Thanks in advance
 

·
Life is strange
Joined
·
1,991 Posts
Hey everyone - wondering if you have any recommendations for a newbie (today was my first day out) on some good trails or parks for a beginner? The place I went to today was definitely not a good spot for a beginner. I found myself have to get off my bike a TON and walk it up a slope. And I also was pulling over a lot to let other riders fly by. Any suggestions on some good places in the South Bay would be much appreciated. I'm down in San Jose.

Thanks in advance
Where did you go riding today?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
12 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I went to Santa Teresa County Park. It's only a couple miles from my place so it's rather convenient. Started right at the bottom and worked my way up. Not sure if that was the best idea ha.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
822 Posts
Ah yes... STCP... a favorite...

If you've got some cardio, park at the bottom, by the golf course and ride up Bernal (the road). Pick a nice small gear and make it to the top.

Alternatively, drive to the top, park in the little parking lot. and Ride the dirt path back to the big field and around the edge towards the picnic grounds. Pass the picnic grounds towards the right and onto the gravel road. After about 200ft on the gravel road, take a right turn and follow that all the way down into Almaden Valley. It's all downhill and fireroad/double track.

You can actually follow that trail all the way to Almaden Lake and once you cross Harry Rd, it's a paved bike trail.

There's some brutal hills in STCP, but there's also some easy stuff as well.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
12 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Ah yes... STCP... a favorite...

If you've got some cardio, park at the bottom, by the golf course and ride up Bernal (the road). Pick a nice small gear and make it to the top.

Alternatively, drive to the top, park in the little parking lot. and Ride the dirt path back to the big field and around the edge towards the picnic grounds. Pass the picnic grounds towards the right and onto the gravel road. After about 200ft on the gravel road, take a right turn and follow that all the way down into Almaden Valley. It's all downhill and fireroad/double track.

You can actually follow that trail all the way to Almaden Lake and once you cross Harry Rd, it's a paved bike trail.

There's some brutal hills in STCP, but there's also some easy stuff as well.
Thanks for the suggestion. I'll give it a shot tomorrow. I'll try and ride up Bernal and then enjoy the ride down, hopefully haha.
 

·
Custom User Title
Joined
·
7,429 Posts
Thanks! I'll give those a shot as well. Maybe tomorrow actually
Here is a loop to follow to hit most good trails:

full.png

Clockwise. Though thinking of that, counterclockwise could be easier. My usual single speed route, so I am not sure. It is about 6 miles per loop.

Should take my daughter there tomorrow.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
137 Posts
If you want to avoid hills but still get the feeling of a narrow and not too technical trail, Los gatos creek trail might be good. Starting in Campbell near basketball courts cross over the bridge towards the freeway side of the trail. On the left hand side there is an opening for a trail that parallels the paved trail. Once you reach the bridge (Camden/San Thomas) turn around and come back down. Suggest not wearing earbuds and keeping eyes and ears open for occasional oncoming traffic. It's short but can help build confidence.
 

·
Custom User Title
Joined
·
7,429 Posts
If you want to avoid hills but still get the feeling of a narrow and not too technical trail, Los gatos creek trail might be good.
A great flattish singletrack is Coyote ridge road (worst part) - Campground trail - Valley Oak (best part) - Calaveraz to end and back, starting from Mendoza ranch entrance at Coyote Lake park. About 9 miles round trip (easy to make shorter by turning around), about 600ft of accumulated climbing that never feels steep. Started both my kids to cycling on trails there.

full.png
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
137 Posts
A great flattish singletrack is Coyote ridge road - Campground trail - Valley Oak (best part) - Calaveraz to end and back, starting from Mendoza ranch entrance at Coyote Lake park. About 9 miles round trip (easy to make shorter by turning around), about 600ft of accumulated climbing that never feels steep. Started both my kids to cycling on trails there.
Cool, been looking for something longer to take kids out on. Thanks.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Axe

·
Registered
Joined
·
360 Posts
I'm a beginner too. Here are some trails I've ridden since I got my bike two months ago:

Grant Ranch: Dutch Flat is nice counterclockwise. There's one steep section with a sandpit in the middle that I had to walk. Then take Canada de Pala, and return via Hotel Trail. It's all fire roads, so if you don't like fire roads, you won't like it. And pay no attention to the word "Flat" in the name of Dutch Flat. It isn't.

I also like Halls Valley Trail in Grant Ranch. I haven't climbed it on my mountain bike, but I have climbed it many times on my road bike with 32 mm smooth tires. On the road bike, I would descend on the road, but people say Los Huecos and Yerba Buena are both fun (read: steep) descents.

Arastradero: Lots of trails.

Stevens Canyon: Ride all the way up to Page Mill, then ride back down. Or continue up Bella Vista trail and return via Montebello trail/road. You might have to walk a few sections.

Montebello Open Space: Try Oak Flat. I like it clockwise. (Notice that any trail that has the word "Flat" in it contains climbs.)

Up Alpine Road, cross over on Skyline to Windy Hill, down Spring Ridge Trail.

If I can't make it up a steep trail, or I don't like the look of a steep downhill or a technical bit, I just walk.

Fremont Older: Avoid the section of Toyon that is nearest to Garrod Farms if you're not ready for very steep downhills and uphills. The other roads and trails are fun for us beginners. Mostly fire roads, but Seven Springs Loop is single track. Doing it clockwise means you climb in the shade.
 

·
Wēk Sôs
Joined
·
3,210 Posts
I went to Santa Teresa County Park. It's only a couple miles from my place so it's rather convenient. Started right at the bottom and worked my way up. Not sure if that was the best idea ha.
Which parts did you walk, and what was your route? It would give a better idea of what you had trouble with, and indicate what your fitness is.

what is easy for some is not for others.
 
1 - 16 of 16 Posts
Top