A great local ride in the Santa Monicas that is not too technical and gives a great workout with awesome views.
Park on Queensferry near the Horse Trail and descend the steep paved grade into the Canyon.The first four miles of climbing are relatively easy (3-5% grade) along some doubletrack on Sullivan Canyon
. There's singletrack off to the sides (colloquially known as the Goat Trail) that parallel the doubletrack on the way up.
At roughly the 3.5-mile mark, you'll start hitting the steeper part of the trail where it goes up to Sullivan Fire Road
(8-12%). Once you hit the concrete pad at the top of the first steep section, make a left up towards Sullivan Fire Road
. This part is 8-15% for about half a mile but features a lot of loose rocks making it pretty tough.
Once you hit Sullivan Fire Road
at the top, hang a right towards Mulholland Drive Fire Road
. Once you hit Mulholland, hang a right towards Westridge Singletrack
. Descend for about half a mile and turn right at the yellow gate into the Nike Missile Base Site. Once you reach the scenic overlook, stay to the right: there are bathrooms and a high arching water fountain that can easily refill bottles or a reservoir.
Continue down Westridge/Mandeville Fire Road about a quarter mile until you see the Westridge Singletrack
off to your left. This is where the fun begins!
will intertwine with Westridge/Mandeville Fire Road at several points. You can hop on or off as you see fit as there are three tough grades to climb to get over the ridges on the singletrack (+15%) but they are easily hike-able, too.
Head all the way down to the parking lot and continue back down to Bayliss and Queensferry to get back to your car. Enjoy a cold beverage!
The Nike Missile Base has military history behind it. If you have time, feel free to climb the towers and take some awesome pics of the cities and ocean below.