Skunk Hollow to South Fork ART (American River Trail)

 15 votes

13.6 Miles 21.9 Kilometers



2,136' 651 m


-2,148' -655 m


991' 302 m


480' 146 m



Avg Grade (3°)


Max Grade (12°)

All Clear

52 days agoUpdate

Rolling cross country river view singletrack into the past....

Shayne Holderby


No Horses on first 2.5 miles
This ride starts at the Skunk Hollow Parking area just across Salmon Falls Rd from the Salmon Falls parking area. The trail is scenic with both ridge and river views throughout the ride. The turn around point is an erie step into the past.

Need to Know

Parking area is $10 or you can park about 1/4 mile down road for free. On weekends, expect to pay as there is river access and many lake users in the parking areas.


Start at the NE corner of the parking area next to bathrooms. The clearly marked trailhead leads immediately to rocky switchback climbing to a ridge. Steep downhill leads to more climbing followed by more gradual and less rocky downhill. The ride is virtually never flat, you are either climbing or descending almost its entire length.

Several points along the ride offer great views of the American River. At about mile 4, the trail drops into a valley with narrow winding singletrack in amongst the trees. At this point the ride offers some great downhill and a few switchbacks. After passing through the valley the ride brings you back to the river with an area to stop and have a meal (picnic bench with dedication plaque).

The trail will gradually climb again opening up to a fire road and the Ridge Trail will branch off the SouthFork ART. Further down the fire road another trail will branch off, leading you back to the river (River Access Connector). Continuing past these trails leads you to a gradual downhill to a HUGE open valley with some old turn of the century ranch buildings. At this point you come to the turn around of this ride or you can continue on along one of two other trails, Long Valley Trail or Cronan Ranch Trailhead.

History & Background

Originally a large portion of the land for this trail was owned by the Bacchi family who acquired some of the land from the Murphys and the Central Pacific Railroad. All of the land currently in use for the trail was purchased by the American River Conservancy and the BLM.


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3.7 from 15 votes

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Jun 5, 2017
Abby Zach
Apr 23, 2017
Adem Philup
Gorgeous singletrack. Great interval workout with all the climbing. But the tail end is mostly downhill. Magical. 14.5mi
Apr 23, 2017
Seth Taylor
Fun trail, right out of the gate your climbing pretty good, with lots of rocks, later on it was so amazing with everything green and pretty. 5.1mi — 1h 49m
Apr 11, 2017
James Lindenberger
I rode to the creek crossing. There is a downed tree about 3 miles in & the poison oak is pretty thick after the initial climb from Skunk Hollow. 11mi — 3h 00m
Mar 12, 2017
Britton Nixon
Jan 14, 2017
Douglas Nardinelli
fun ride. today. I have been riding salmon falls trail for years but never rode the south fork. Glad I did very fun lots of climbing though but wo...
Nov 5, 2016
Anthy Alexiades
May 25, 2016
Ryan Eckert

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  3.7 from 15 votes


in Folsom Lake


  3.7 from 15 votes
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9,402 Since Sep 9, 2013
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All Clear 52 days ago

Getting forecast...

Nice ride, clear signage, very exposed with little shade. And as the description said all up or down with no flat areas. Tough on a singlespeed. Aug 28, 2014


Fun ride. Good mix of riding types, with some slightly technical climbing and descending, and some fast and easy descending. Covers a few different types of landscapes. The climb at the beginning is a tough warm-up, and there are some blind switchbacks, so bring a bell. Trail is well-maintained from what I can tell, though a little overgrown in places. Jul 5, 2017

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