The original De LaFriday ride is back! Let's get an early start on our weekend rides by shaking off the work-week with this fun and technical Santa Cruz hillside park.
I don't hammer through the park, and I am a slug on the climbs, but love the drops and racing down hill-to give you an idea of my pace. Go ahead of me and I will catch up.
The hillside consists of multiple singletrack loops intermingling between redwood groves, oak woodlands, Branciforte creek, mixed forests and grasslands. At the "top of the world" aka "Corona Trail"- there's a lookout offering an awesome view of the Monterey Bay and east Santa Cruz.
Multiple loops in different directions provide variety (and increased mileage) in an already diverse area to ride. Be prepared for rocks, ruts, roots, drops, flowy sections, short steep climbs, off camber and narrow sections with high penalty for mistakes in some areas. There's a short fire road climb for a nice break between singletrack sessions. This park allows for you to gain speed and be challenged at the same time.
Although small, "De La" offers a variety of singletrack in a beautiful area to practice your technical skills. Definitely worth getting off work early. TGIF!
Directions from San Jose:
1. Head south on CA-17 to Santa Cruz- over the hill
2. Slight left to stay on CA-17 S (signs for CA-1 N/CA-9/Half Moon Bay/Boulder Creek/Ocean Street/Beaches)
3. Continue onto Ocean St
4. Turn left onto Water St
5. Turn left on Market St
6. Market turns into Branciforte
7. Continue on Branciforte and look for the dirt parking lot on right side of road at about .2 miles past Goss Ave.
As always a helmet is required for all SJMTB rides and extra protective gear is recommended if you are tentative about riding down rocky trails. If the ride is relatively short so you shouldn't need too much in the way of supplies. Water, a small snack, and your basic trail side tools (multi-tool, tube, pump) should be sufficient for these rides.