Join us on a social Shop Ride Excursion to Santa Cruz. We will leave from Pedal Forward Bikes & Adventure at 8:00 AM on Sunday, March 7th. We’d love to ride with you!
Below are the details about the destination and some of the trails available to ride!
Soquel Demonstration State Forest is situated in the Santa Cruz Mountains along California’s central coast. Originally part of a Mexican land grant, the property was logged by several different owners before the State taking ownership in 1988. Today, the Forest provides the public access to the beauty of the coastal redwoods and the wildlife found in this habitat type. Per CALFire policy, no e-bikes are allowed at SDSF.
This area provides the best legal technical and intermediate/advanced riding in the Bay Area.
Four Main Trails:
It was reopened on May 27, 2020. The Sawpit Trail closed after the winter of 2016/17 and, through the active timber management operation period, has been rerouted. Through a partnership with Mountain Bikers of Santa Cruz, the trail work is now complete, and Sawpit Trail is open. Sawpit Trail is remote, rocky, and steep with a 4.1-mile climb out Hihn’s Mill Road to the Highland Way parking area.
Braille is steep and natural. The trailhead off Ridge Trail has signage to call the top. As you enter on a reasonably flat sector, you’ll do a couple of esses and soon come to a log drop of about 3-4 feet, and from there, it gets fun. Looking around as you descend, you’ll see at least 5 ramp jumps built by trail gnomes. Inspect them before you try them, as at one time or another, they have all been awesome. But conditions cause change. It is easy to skip them and try them at a later date. The other items you’ll find as you descend are steep (steep) skinny scalloped lines over roots. There is a skinny bridge and a teeter-totter about halfway down (easy to go-round). You can choose one or the other, but hitting both at speed is tough as they are not in line. As you get closer to the bottom, the trail weaves between redwoods and has one G-out that may catch you in the wrong gear forcing you over a skinny redwood ramp – 3 ft. gully bridge. Near the bottom is a fat four-foot high fatty log with a ramp-up and a huck to flat on the other end. Easy to by-pass, rewarding to hit. A new-ish route at the bottom has you come out parallel to the fire road. It was done to reduce getting t-boned on the fire road, but it requires a pedal stroke or four to get off the Braille.
Flow trail (blue)
Built specifically for mountain bikes, a flow trail emphasizes speed and rhythm, featuring berms, rollers, jumps and other features that are designed in a way that uses the rider’s momentum to minimize pedaling and braking (think downhill pump track). From the young (or not so young) beginner to the downhill pro, a flow trail delivers smiles for riders of all ages and skill levels.
MBoSC has partnered with land manager California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (CAL FIRE) to build a four-mile flow trail in Soquel Demonstration State Forest (SDSF). The objectives of this project are to promote mountain biking by creating a progressive trail that can be enjoyed by riders of all ages and ability level, and to increase the diversity of riding opportunities, demonstrate innovative and sustainable trail building design and techniques, and provide a model for other land managers for similar types of projects.
Ridge Trail (blue)
Ridge is the launching point for most of the descents found in the Demo. All the DH trails start from Ridge, and Ridge connects them all at the top. It’s a fun trail with lots of turns, a couple of rock gardens, and a couple of Up-Pitches that test your ability to change speed rapidly (fast to slow) as you clear them. There are gathering spots at every trailhead where riders can group up – the start at Rosalia, the top of Corral, the top of Sulphur (the helipad), the top of Braille, and the top of Flow. It is mostly ridden fast in the DOWNHILL direction, but sometimes people climb – if you climb, be aware that no one expects to see you, so listen carefully and get ready to give way.
This is a social ride and is not sponsored in any way by Pedal Forward Bikes & Adventure, LLC. Riders that decide to ride socially with Pedal Forward Bikes & Adventure, LLC associates freely assume all risks of personal injury, and riders agree to hold Pedal Forward Bikes & Adventure,LLC harmless from all claims of injury.