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Backbone Trail - Puerco Canyon Road Loop

Intermediate/Difficult
 3.6 (8) RECOMMENDED ROUTE

Killer Backbone Trail singletrack to Corral Canyon panorama with a descent to the ocean and back.


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Map Key

26.0

Miles

41.9

KM

40%

Singletrack

2,264' 690 m

High

35' 11 m

Low

4,251' 1,296 m

Up

4,249' 1,295 m

Down

6%

Avg Grade (4°)

30%

Max Grade (17°)

Dogs Unknown

E-Bikes Unknown

Overview

The singletrack of the Backbone Trail from Kanan to Latigo Canyon and further to Corral Canyon is some of the best around; flowy sections, fun rock gardens, and only a few climbs that might require a dismount. The Corral Canyon area has a slick rock feel which is interesting riding. If you take the Puerco Motorway and Puerco Canyon Road down as mapped, it's a scenic fire road bomb to the bottom.

Need to Know

  • As mapped, this is a full 26-mile loop, but it's also possible to complete as a much shorter shuttled option.
  • Bring lots of water or refill somewhere down on the PCH.

Description

This section of the Backbone Trail is very clearly marked. If you miss signs then you might be off the trail somehow. Keep an eye on the MTB Project mobile app if you're not sure where you are.

The trailhead parking is on the right, just before the tunnel on Kanan going south. The first section requires a tough climb on loose rocky trail that is not representative of the rest of this great ride. It probably will require a hike-a-bike unless you're a great climber. After crossing over the tunnel, there is a flowy downhill section until you reach a private road crossing. The trail here continues up with a section of downhill and then finally climbs until Latigo Canyon Road about 2.1 miles from the start.

When you reach Latigo Canyon Road, cross the street to the other trailhead and look for the singletrack. A short climb, then some nice downhill with shade is up next. That feeds into a tough climb on some loose trail that takes you up to the Newton Motorway about another two miles from Latigo Canyon Road. Here riders will descend down the saddle on some technical downhill and into a shady section with lots of flow and rocky creek crossings.

Coming out of this is a mild climb and you'll eventually reach an intersection with another fire road. Here, continue on and look for the Backbone Trail singletrack that takes you all the way to the Corral Canyon trailhead about 4.2 miles from Latigo Canyon Road. This is a good spot to turn around, explore more of the Backbone Trail, or take the Puerco Motorway and Puerco Canyon Road down to the ocean as mapped.

If you do venture down to the water below, a quick walk down to the beach makes a nice end to the ride if you've shuttled. Or it makes a nice break before continuing onto a grueling climb back up Corral Canyon Road, a little west from here along the PCH. Climbing Corral Canyon Rd. is really tough, expect over an hour of brutal mashing of the pedals.

Contacts

Shared By:

Chris Sip

Trail Ratings

  3.6 from 8 votes

#2433

Overall
  3.6 from 8 votes
5 Star
25%
4 Star
38%
3 Star
13%
2 Star
25%
1 Star
0%
Recommended Route Rankings

#322

in California

#2,433

Overall
109 Views Last Month
13,795 Since Mar 17, 2014
Intermediate/Difficult

0%
0%
25%
13%
63%
0%

Photos

Clearing a steep rock step on the Backbone Trail
Oct 21, 2015 near Agoura…, CA
Corral Canyon rock formations
Dec 25, 2013 near Agoura…, CA
Trails for miles!
May 7, 2017 near Agoura…, CA
Speaking of cruising down with a majestic view.
Dec 14, 2015 near Agoura, CA
Corral Canyon
Nov 27, 2017 near Agoura, CA
Along the Backbone Trail. with permission from laollis
Aug 8, 2016 near Agoura…, CA

Weather


Current Trail Conditions

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Check-Ins

Apr 4, 2021
Jaime Castañeda
Sep 7, 2020
Jason Shafer
No shade ever. Backbone was dope but short on its own, the slick rock section was cool. The fire road was long and wasn't worth it. 21mi — 2h 30m
May 19, 2020
Ted Russell
Mar 1, 2020
Pquiglamer Knútur
4h 10m
Sep 14, 2019
Brad Hitchcock
Sep 1, 2019
Nick Taylor
Jun 24, 2019
Eric Freier
Sections were heavily overgrown from the super bloom this year. 51mi — 9h 00m
Mar 19, 2019
norman schiele
Mostly eroded fire road, pretty boring riding. Nice view though. Singletrack to the west is really eroded, covered in small rocks. 18mi — 10h 00m