Our Kid Reporter today is Zach, who is twelve years old and lives in Berkeley, CA.
I have been mountain biking for four years. Mountain biking is really fun because it’s great exercise, you can ride to a destination with a view, and it is really fun to get to ride downhill super fast.
There are three trails I am going to tell you about here. I've chosen a beginner, intermediate, and advanced trail that I like. You can work up to more advanced trails. If you want to do all three of the trails, then I recommend that you do many beginner trails before moving on to the next level.
I hope this article makes you want to get on a mountain and have a wild and awesome time!
Beginner Mountain Biker Ride: Wildcat Creek Trail
A great first mountain biking trail is located in in Tilden Park in Berkeley. Even my little sister did it (well most of it!) Park at the end of Lone Oak Road in Tilden Park and hop on your bike and get on Loop Road all the way to Wildcat Creek Trail. The total ride is only eight miles. You can turn around whenever you want to. It is not a loop trail.
The trail ends in the El Sobrante Hills and then you turn around and ride back. This trail has one hard part about three miles into it. It is downhill and super steep. You can walk your bike down it if you have to. (I did that the first time I rode it.) This may not be the most exciting trail but it is easy to access and it is a good first trail and it goes through the forest.
Intermediate Mountain Bike Ride: Concrete Pipe Trail
This trail is in Fairfax, CA. Get yourself to Porteous Avenue, and park at the parking lot at the end of the street. Get on your bike and find the trail to the left of the school. You just keep going on the trail until you get to Five Corners. Then you can take the Concrete Pipe Trail. This trail is really fun because it is kind of like a single track. (Single track trails are thin trails on which you can only ride single file.) Stay away from the gravel on the trail. It is super hard to ride on! Another BEAST thing about Concrete Pipe is that you can ride down the first part of it super fast because there is a flat part at the end to slow you down. This trail connects with Bolinas Road, which you take up to the short Bullfrog Trail, which leads to a gravel road. Take a right on Bolinas Road to Shaver Grade Trail and ride it down to Five Corners to Deer Park Trail to get back to your car. (This is all super well marked!) This whole trail takes me about two hours.
Advanced Mountain Bike Ride: Camp Tamarancho
This trail is DOUBLE BEAST. This is also in Fairfax. Let’s face it: There are a lot of good trails in Marin. Park at the bottom of Iron Springs Road. Go up the trailhead on Iron Springs Road. Eventually, you come to a sign like this.
Take the trail to the right of the sign and start the journey.
Warning: This trail is hard because it has steep uphills and downhills and a lot of switchbacks but that is what makes it BEAST.
- If you are in a rush do not take this trail. Take your time. It takes about 4-5 hours.
- On the first up do not sprint up it.
- There are signs that have double black diamond jumps or super hard ways up a hill. Don’t take them unless you are ready to.
- Feel free to turn around.
- Bring fuel! Water, energy bars, you name it.
- On the Endor trail, Take the Bank turns super high.
- Do not ride Tamarancho backward.
Thanks for your BEAST guide to mountain biking, Zach! Like all of our Kid Reporters this summer, Zach will receive a gift card for Mr. Mopps Bookstore and toy store in Berkeley.