MT Diablo North Ridge trail - Trail, Walnut Creek, California

MT Diablo North Ridge trail - Trail, Walnut Creek, California

DESCRIPTION

Great singletrack will take you a couple of miles down to Prospector's Gap. From here it is all fire roads. Take a left here and proceed down to Deer Flat. CAUTION is advised here, the first time I rode this, I let gravity take over a bit too much and after regaining control had reached a max speed of 45mph. Further down the Mtn. you will do some short climbs, trivial. In one section the trail drops very steeply but smoothly, I have reached 50mph here. WATCH OUT for hikers and horses!!! Continue down to Mitchell Canyon. At the end you will run into smooth rolling fire road, more like a highway and continue to the ranger station and staging area. You can either ride back to your car at the North Gate or have a car waiting. To get back ride out the road, only one, into Clayton. Take a left at the first stop sign onto Lone Pine ride about two miles out to Ygnacio Valley Road and go left again up over the hill then down to Oak grove Road, it should look familiar here as you go left and retrace your drive in to your car. Everyone, Feel free to correct me on details, it has been a while since I rode here.

USER REVIEWS

Showing 1-10 of 10  
[Apr 30, 2004]
Anonymous
Weekend Warrior

For adrenaline junkies seeking great views of the Bay Area. Definitely an aerobic workout. Roughly 3200 ft of elevation gained w/ some long stretches inclines. The last 850 or so is on paved road. The downhill from Devil's elbow (North Peak Trail) is pretty techinical w/ lots of loose rocks...for the strong intermediate types and advance riders. On the way down to Prospector Gap road, you can get some serious speed 40+. Be warned though, lots of rocks and ruts combined w/ steep grades can lead to some serious injury. Having disc brakes is a very good investment for this ride :)

Customer Service

Mitchell Canyon Rd -> Deer Flat-> Summit Rd (paved) to Deivils Elbow-> North Peak Trail-> Prospector Gap Rd-> Donner Canyon Rd-> Bruce Lee Trail Roughly 7.7 miles to the Summit, 15 miles round trip.

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
[May 04, 1999]
Anonymous

The ride up Mt. Diablo is long but on smooth pavement. The ride down is worth the effort.

Customer Service

Follow the above instructions and have fun. This ride is a blast.

Similar Products Used:

Pick up a trail map at the gate or in the center at

OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
[Feb 02, 2000]
Anonymous

Fun trail to ride, and there are many variations you can take to get up or down the mountain. Be sure to bring LOTS of water though, 100+ temps are not uncommon June-Sept.

Customer Service

Same as above but on way out through Clayton turn left on Pine Hollow, not Lone Pine. It's still the first stop sign.

OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
[Jun 16, 2000]
Anonymous

This trail is quite challenging, but there's a severe drop off to one side. The penalty for failure is high. It's usually loose (pebble sized rocks), there's some very tight switchbacks, and it's rocky. Since I'm chicken, I usually do a lot of walking. If you enjoy technical trails, you'll probably like this one.

Customer Service

Mitchell Canyon from Clayton to Juniper Camp (wicked climb), paved road up to Devil's Elbow then get on the North PEAK Trail (there's no such thing as a North RIDGE Tr.). From there you can drop down on Meridian Ridge and Donner Canyon Tr.'s (steep, loose fire roads).

Similar Products Used:

Dan Cook Tr. Since I'm not a great technical rider and the trail is so loose and the penalty for failure is so high, I view this trail only as a means to make a loop ride. I don't enjoy riding it much.

OVERALL
RATING
2
VALUE
RATING
[Dec 28, 2001]
Anonymous

If you are looking for challenging and beautiful riding in the East Bay, check out Mt. Diablo. This loop will give you a fitness check, hone your technical skills, and give you a few thrills.

Customer Service

Many thanks to Phil Stuecheli. I first rode this area after reading his online review, and it remains one of my favorites...East or West Coast.

Similar Products Used:

Diamond Canyon, Lake Chabot, etc.

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
[Mar 11, 2002]
Anonymous

My buddies and I found our favorite way is to go up the road all the way to Devils Elbow trailhead. It is a lot of fun to ride down especially since were big downhillers. Be careful off all the hikers because it is just single track and were not supposed to ride down that. From there you connect with the fire road go left down the meridian ridge and cetch major speed and bomb if you love downhilling. From there keep going on the fire road till you find deer flat and if you love technical single track like I do ride down that trail to the bottom. I dont recommend much of Diablo for Cross Country riders, do the downhill some of it is incredible and the whole mountain is just beautiful, BRING LOTS OF WATER and wear pads there is some rugged terrain out there.

Customer Service

Down Devils Elbow to Meridian ridge fire road over too Deer flat the single track is awesome.

Similar Products Used:

Mt. Tam

OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
[Mar 30, 2002]
Anonymous

Probably one the best endurance rides in the Bay Area, in one large, self contained area. We ran into a coyote patiently standing by the side of the road on the way up Mitchell Canyon....lots of poison oak opportunities as well as birds and tons of squirrels. There are plenty of gorgeous views, and you earn every one of them. In some of the descriptions of this trail, the 1000ft climb up to Deer Flat was on so-called "switch back" trails...Well, some are almost vertical switchbacks....Not much terrain relief until you get all the way to Juniper Campground, where we got some much needed water....The weather was about 80 degrees (late March 2002), and we both got farmers tans. Some of the downhill riding is quite intense, specifically in vertical drop and terrain. Much of the ground is loose gravel and one wrong move, well, we've all experienced that outcome.

I did find some of the trail signs puzzling....whereas you find a name for a "road", you can also see in small print, the name of a "trail"....but its also hard to miss the general direction you are heading given the visibility and general contours of the mountain.

Bring lots of water, and even some energy bars for the top to give you the kick for Devil's Elbow. Despite the length and heat, I definitely had a great experience, and will return to this trail. Beginners and those without considerable stamina should not apply.

Customer Service

We took the Mitchell Canyon Trail right from the staging ground, and followed the route suggested in the review we read here (at mtb.com)....Up to Deer Flat (el. 2120), up the two brutal climbs towards Juniper Campground, and made a left onto the road and eventually got up to Devil's Elbow, but only after going all the way to the Summit (el. 3849) for the view and a look at whether there were any singletrack trails down from there, connecting to Devil's Elbow (there are none which allow bikes). Devil's Elbow, on singletrack all the way down to Prospector's Gap, Meridian fire trail, Donner Canyon, took a little single track detour towards the end of the Donner Trail, but ultimately went towards the Regency entrance, the Bruce Lee Trail (bad signage), and returned to Mitchell Canyon staging area.

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
[Jul 06, 2002]
Anonymous

ya gotta have tons of stamina fer this ride and the downhill is a b!tch. i was going into a hairpin and mi bike slide of the [email protected] mountain! its a very had trail in general and gives you a good workout.

Customer Service

forgot how i got there =(

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
[Aug 19, 2002]
Anonymous

This is a serious workout to the North Peak trail. The first couple of miles are gentle uphill. From there it is about a 1000 foot climb to Deer Flat in probably about 1.25 miles. It's pretty steep. Once you hit Deer Flat, take the trail that veers to the right. This is Deer Flat trail to Camp Juniper. It starts out unassuming at first, but be prepared for something called "The Widowmaker". This will put your heart rate at or near 100% of maximum for about 3 min.
After that though, it's much easier to the top. It will be all paved road from there. Go to the top and check out the view. Seriously, gotta be one of the best around on a clear day!!! Head back down to Devils Elbow and make a left on to the single trac. This is North Peak Tr. This is legal single trac as there is a sign posted allowing us to use it. Be prepared for 2 things. Some hikers always have to say something so just remind them of the signs allowing us to use the trail. Be nice though as we don't want to loose this trail too. The second thing, if you fall, fall TOWARD the mountain otherwise you will fall down the mountain a long way! You are at 3500 feet at this trail. It is steep in spots so be careful. Make a left at prospectors gap and head down the hill. Fire trail but steep in spots and like quick sand now. My tire and rim sank in the dirt. Turn right at Donner Canyon. This trail has some strait downhill where you can hit mega speed. At the bottom of Donner Canyon, turn left back to mitchell canyon. I think this is an excellent ride but you must be in shape. MOUNTAIN BIKE SHAPE. Your road bike will not help you here!! You have been warned!!

Customer Service

Start at Mitchell Canyon and follow the suggested route thru deer flat and camp juniper to the summit. North Peak trail is at devils elbow.

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
[Mar 31, 2003]
Anonymous

I took my trusty singlespeed to Mt Diablo. Wasn't sure what I'd find, but figured it'd be a good workout. 32:18 with 177.5 cranks on a full rigid bike is a good gear for most of the fireroads and all the legal singletrack I found. I didn't quite make the climb to the summit on Summit Trail - the last fireroad I was on was too loose for my rear tire to maintain traction. I could only walk it at 2.x mph and ride it at 3.x when I could feather the torque just enough... didn't want the last 1.5 mi to the top to take so long, so I turned around. The fireroads are mostly loose so I was taking it easy, but still hit 31.7 mph. Full rigid over embedded sandstone outcroppings at that speed is fun but amounts to tempting fate. Thanks-you, Fate, for smiling on me yesterday. I'll go back. A single-day "private" epic would be to climb fireroads/st from South Gate to the named rides in the park ranger lit., then back down to the car, refill water bottles and explore Green Valley Regional Trail and back to car for refill, then climb that paved road to the top. Even better on a SS!

The point of these trails is climbing and views. In the downhill direction the trails are not interesting enough to justify the carnage possible due to the speeds possible. 5 star climbing workout; 3 star interest (and that only due to GVRT and views); ave = 4

Customer Service

Climb it all!! Who wants to go 40 mph on a graded fireroad?? I parked at the South Gate entrance gate and started at the bottom of the Summit Trail. Don't miss the first trail turn-off to the left a 1/4 mi in/up. That's a little bit of the Green Valley Regional Trail (bikes O.K.) and is the best singletrack I found at Mt Diablo. Ride it out and back for 1/2 mi or so in each direction - it features several "rollers" for a warm up... reminds me of riding in TX. Then, follow the Summit Trail as far up as you can. You can take fireroads and/or pavement to North Peak...

Similar Products Used:

Green Valley Regional Trail

OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
Showing 1-10 of 10  
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