Best Mountain Biking in California

This list represents the most popular mountain biking in California. Use this list to plan your next California mountain biking trip. Select a state and/or activity below to find even more top trails.

Learn more about Top Trails

#1. Holy Jim Trail


The hike into Holy Jim Canyon is one of the most scenic and interesting in the Santa Ana Mountains. The hike passes under a multitude of trees and crosses Holy Jim Creek many times before eventu…
From the guidebook "Best Easy Day Hikes: Orange County"
Corona, CA - Hiking, Mountain Biking - 2.7 miles Top Trail in North America - Click to view allBest Trail in ca - Click to view allBestHiking, Mountain Biking Trail - Click to view all (About Top Trails)
Published by Falcon Guides

#2. American River Bike Path


Arguably one of the most successful and beautifully paved bike paths in northern California, this 32-mile gem of a trail stretches from downtown Sacramento eastward to Folsom Dam (64 miles round-trip)…
From the guidebook "Mountain Bike! Northern California"
Sacramento, CA - Mountain Biking - 64 miles Best Trail in ca - Click to view allBestMountain Biking Trail - Click to view all (About Top Trails)
Published by Menasha Ridge Press

#3. Aliso / Wood Canyons Regional Park: Rock-It / Cholla Loop


One of Orange County's most popular riding spots, Aliso/ Wood Canyons Regional Park-part of Laguna Niguel Regional Park lies hidden between Laguna Beach and Laguna Hills. It is a unique combination of…
From the guidebook "Mountain Biking Southern California's Best 100 Trails"
Laguna Beach, CA - Mountain Biking - 10.2 miles Best Trail in ca - Click to view allBestMountain Biking Trail - Click to view all (About Top Trails)
Published by Fine Edge Productions

#4. Backbone Trail / Castor Crest


This is a lollipop-shaped route where the sucker is a lot bigger than the stick, but every part is worth devouring. Much of this ride takes place on the Backbone Trail, a path that snakes across the…
From the guidebook "Mountain Bike! Southern California"
Malibu, CA - Mountain Biking - 12.6 miles BestMountain Biking Trail - Click to view all (About Top Trails)
Published by Menasha Ridge Press

#5. Foresthill Divide Loop Trail


One of the newest trails in the Auburn State Recreation Area's burgeoning trail system, the Foresthill Divide Loop Trail (FDLT) is pure fun - a singletrack loop that dips and climbs, swoops and rolls,…
From the guidebook "Mountain Biking Northern California's Best 100 Trails"
Auburn, CA - Mountain Biking - 11.3 miles BestMountain Biking Trail - Click to view all (About Top Trails)
Published by Fine Edge Productions

#6. Big Sycamore Canyon / Point Mugu State Park


Strength and good bike handling skills are required of cyclists following this 15.5-mile loop. The first 5.6 miles are a gentle ascent on Big sycamore Canyon Trail to Ranch Center Road. The pedaling…
From the guidebook "Mountain Bike! Southern California"
Oxnard, CA - Mountain Biking - 15.5 miles
Published by Menasha Ridge Press

#7. 17-Mile Drive to Carmel Road Ride


Never mind that this is a road ride. The famed 17-Mile Drive is a ride that’s rated as one of the Top 100 routes to pedal in America. If this is your first time to the Monterey Peninsula, this ride is…
From the guidebook "Mountain Bike! Northern California"
Carmel, CA - Mountain Biking - 29 miles
Published by Menasha Ridge Press

#8. Chino Hills State Park


Located in Carbon Canyon near the city of Brea. Highlights: Awesome singletrack on Raptor Ridge. Hazards: Climbing the Three Bitches. Rattlesnakes, bobcats, and mountain lions. Parking at the west ent…
From the guidebook "Mountain Biking Southern California"
Brea, CA - Mountain Biking - 17 miles
Published by Falcon Guides

#9. Daley Ranch


This ride is located northeast of Escondido in San Diego's north County region. Beginning a few miles from the center of Escondido, the ride quickly climbs through rocky, boulder-strewn land. There…
From the guidebook "Mountain Bike! Southern California"
Escondido, CA - Mountain Biking - 12 miles
Published by Menasha Ridge Press

#10. China Camp Loop


This is a quick trek into the woods. Enjoy well-maintained singletrack through the hills along San Pablo Bay. Ride toward the ridgeline and follow the contours to China Camp Village. This picturesque…
From the guidebook "Mountain Biking the San Francisco Bay Area"
San Rafael, CA - Mountain Biking - 11.4 miles
Published by Falcon Guides

#11. Blue Lakes & Indian Valley


There are many beautiful lakes and meadows, as well as vistas of the Mokelumne Wilderness. There are opportunities for hiking, camping, fishing and mountain biking.…
From the guidebook "Sierra Nevada Byways"
Markleeville, CA - Fishing, Hiking, Mountain Biking, Off-Highway Drives - 30 miles
Published by Wilderness Press

#12. Sycamore Canyon Park


Located in Riverside County near Moreno Park. Highlights: Fun rollercoastering singletrack similar to cross-country race conditions. Wide variety of other trails to explore. Hazards: Ticks and severe…
From the guidebook "Mountain Biking Southern California"
Riverside, CA - Mountain Biking - 4 miles
Published by Falcon Guides

#13. Box Springs Mountain Park


Located in Riverside County in the mountain range between the city of Grand Terrace and Moreno Valley. Highlights: Fun, technical singletrack descent. Views of Riverside from atop the radio tower look…
From the guidebook "Mountain Biking Southern California"
Grand Terrace, CA - Mountain Biking - 9 miles
Published by Falcon Guides

#14. Lake Clementine Loop


The hugely popular Lake Clementine Loop is a must for anyone new to the area. The trail follows two different branches of the magnificent American River, the North and Middle Forks. As you make your…
From the guidebook "Mountain Biking Northern California's Best 100 Trails"
Auburn, CA - Mountain Biking - 10.5 miles
Published by Fine Edge Productions

#15. San Juan Loop Trail


From San Juan Capistrano to Lake Elsinore, two-lane Ortega Highway stretches like a snake over the midriff of the Santa Ana Mountains, giving road warriors a taste of Orange County’s wild, unfamiliar…
From the guidebook "101 Hikes in Southern California: Exploring Mountains, Seashore and Desert"
San Clemente, CA - Hiking, Mountain Biking - 2.1 miles
Published by Wilderness Press

#16. Glory Hole Lower


This ride from the lower parking area involves riding to the Angels Creek Trail, around that loop, and back. Highlights: Wide, smooth, and gradual singletrack; the Angels Creek Trail dips and swoops t…
From the guidebook "Mountain Biking Northern California"
Stockton, CA - Mountain Biking - 7 miles
Published by Falcon Guides

#17. Brown Mountain / JPL


Located in the Angeles National Forest, above the foothills in Altadena. Highlights: The trail starts just above NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Hazards: Poison oak and rattlesnakes.…
From the guidebook "Mountain Biking Southern California"
Altadena, CA - Mountain Biking - 9.7 miles
Published by Falcon Guides

#18. Big Meadow to Dardanelles Lake


Dardanelles Lake is a scenic lake backdropped by impressive granodiorite cliffs that offers decent fishing and relatively warm water for swimming. Far enough off the thoroughfare of the Tahoe Rim Trai…
From the guidebook "Afoot & Afield: Tahoe-Reno: 201 Spectacular Outings in the Lake Tahoe Region"
Hope Valley, CA - Hiking, Mountain Biking - 8 miles
Published by Wilderness Press

#19. Oat Hill Mine Road


Few places in the heart of northern California’s wine country are open to public use. Nearly every inch of land in this valley of liquid gold is privately owned. This trail, fortunately, is one of tho…
From the guidebook "Mountain Bike! Northern California"
Calistoga, CA - Mountain Biking - 8.6 miles
Published by Menasha Ridge Press

#20. Santa Ana River Trail


This is the longest singletrack in the forest and it's one of my favorites. You have the option of doing this ride as an out-and-back trip or as four different loops. In fact, since every option is a…
From the guidebook "Mountain Biking Southern California's Best 100 Trails"
Big Bear City, CA - Mountain Biking - 24.1 miles
Published by Fine Edge Productions