San Gabriel River Trail to Coyote Creek Trail and Back

CYCLE ORANGE COUNTY, SIGHTSEEING RIDE, SAN GABRIEL RIVER TRAIL TO COYOTE CREEK TRAIL Along this route you’ll see countless cyclists, a power plant, seabirds, water, the beach and maybe even a sea turtle, but the most notable feature of this bike ride is the wind. Through some inexplicable set of odd circumstances, the wind coming off the ocean gets funneled through this ride with an unbelievable fierceness. Even on days with no wind anywhere else, there will be wind on this ride. This excellent bike ride travels along two flood control channels, otherwise known as rivers. The ride starts at Cerritos Regional Park and heads downriver along Coyote Creek Bikeway, a well maintained and lightly traveled path. At 4.7 miles Coyote Creek joins the larger San Gabriel River and the two channels are connected by a pedestrian bridge. Be alert here as there can be quite a bit of traffic crossing over, or into, your lane. Once you have joined the San Gabriel River Trail expect an increase in cycling traffic, as well as the occasional jogger, especially on weekends. Just south of the bridge the concrete channel ends and is replaced with a soft bottom, lending the river a more natural look. The bike path along this stretch is not at its best and you are sure to encounter potholes and cracks. Even more challengingly, for the next few miles your battle with the wind will be at its most fierce. Searing, unrelenting, unforgiving. Here is where you imagine the sand between your toes, the lunch you’re going to have or the dessert you are earning. But best of all, remember how much fun, and fast, the ride back is going to be. Through this section you may also expect to see ospreys, herons and egrets hunting and fishing. As you approach the massive electric power plants, keep an eye out for Green Sea Turtles swimming upriver, attracted by the warm water discharged from the plant. Some of these creatures can weigh up to 500 pounds. When you reach the sea take a much deserved rest. A note about the wind. It is always present, but when Santa Ana wind conditions prevail, consider starting at Seal Beach to Cerritos and back as the wind blows just as hard, if not harder, out to sea. Side Trip At the ride’s start is Cerritos Regional Park, 83 acres of athletic fields, basketball courts, a fishing lake and numerous playgrounds. At the other end is quaint Seal Beach with a sleepy main street waiting to be explored. FOOD AND DRINK The River’s End Café at the turnaround point is an excellent place to stop and rest your wind-seared body. Enjoy Mexican influenced breakfast and lunch dishes with a view of the beach and the river’s end. ACCESS There By bus, OCTA route 30 or 38, to Cerritos on Wheels (COW) route 1 or 2. Get off at Cerritos Regional Park. By car, take the 91 Freeway west, exit south onto Bloomfield Avenue. Travel one mile and turn left on 195th Street. Follow along Cerritos Regional Park to the last set of parking lots beside the tennis courts, turn right into lot and park.
Ride type:
Mountain biking
Road riding
Kid friendly
Rail Trail
Difficulty: Intermediate (Red)
Ride Duration: 2-4 hrs
Fitness Level: Medium
Shared Bike Path - Paved
Shared Bike Path - Dirt
On-Road Bike Lane
Off-Road - Fire Trail
Off-Road - Rail Trail
Off-Road - Single Track
Off-Road - Downhill
Estimated Distance: 30.3
Elevation Gain: 74
First Aid
Bike hire
Bike servicing
Accessible by bike
Accessible by car
Accessible by public transport
Accessible by shuttle / uber
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