Biking the OC: The Best Coastal Paths & Trails
With the beautiful weather and stunning landscapes that define life in Orange County, there is no better place to hop on your bike and hit the trails. Some of the land around the OC is hilly and some desert, which can make for a challenging ride on your fat tire beach cruiser. If you prefer an ocean view, you have lots of opportunities to see coastal scenery from your saddle. Here are some of the best beachy paths and trails around Orange County to explore on your cycle.
Huntington Beach Bike Trail
This eight-mile stretch of paved pathway runs from Bolsa Chica State Park to Huntington Beach State Park. Because it hugs the coastline of one of the most popular beaches in So Cal, it can get crowded at times, and even where it is wide, you should expect a leisurely pace along your ride. It’s a great place to use beach cruiser bikes because you can pop off the trail and onto the sand to get a closer look at the surfers or take a break and enjoy the breeze and sunshine.
El Moro Loop at Crystal Cove State Beach
This five-mile trail is a bit more challenging, but you are rewarded with a gorgeous view of the water from the ridge after your climb. Not all this trail is paved, which is shared with hikers and horseback riders. Since this trail has little to no shade, you should bring plenty of water and sunscreen or a hat to protect you during your ride.
San Clemente Beach Trail
Looking for an easier ride that is perfect for beginners or families? This 2.3-mile sandy trail is a good option. It starts at North beach and continues past the pier to the state beach, with lots of interesting views and beach stops along the way. The trail does run beside a functioning railway track, so exercise caution if you find yourself parallel to a train. Be sure to follow good biking etiquette on your ride, as you share this pathway with lots of pedestrians.
San Onofre Bike Trail and Campgrounds
Throughout this state park, you have ample opportunity for mountain or road biking. The good news is that cyclists do not have to pay an entrance fee to use the roads, but anticipate a moderately challenging ride. If you plan on coming from Oceanside Pier, you may need to show proper ID and use a helmet to continue the trail through Camp Pendleton before making your way to the campgrounds.
Mountains to Sea Trail
Looking for a good spot to put your ebikes Orange County through their paces? This 44-mile round-trip ride takes you from the rugged Weir Canyon until you reach upper Newport Bay. There are several side paths if you want to explore the streets of Irvine, or just continue along the pathway until you reach the Pacific Ocean vista.
The best part of biking in the OC is that you have so many options. Many of these trails interconnect with the 66-mile OC Loop, which takes you along the shoreline and inland for more opportunities to connect with nature or check out the small beach towns for a break and a bite to eat.
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