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The Luge Loop

Difficult
 4.5 (67) RECOMMENDED ROUTE

An OC classic, this night-legal ride features a scenic climb over the OC, and The Luge descent.


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Map Key

7.7

Miles

12.4

KM

65%

Singletrack

2,302' 702 m

High

1,117' 340 m

Low

1,227' 374 m

Up

1,203' 367 m

Down

6%

Avg Grade (3°)

31%

Max Grade (17°)

Dogs Unknown

E-Bikes Unknown

The iconic bar and grill, Cook's Corner, is protective of parking for its walk-in customers, so please respect their parking requirements for mountain bikers.

Overview

Once on dirt, this ride is one of the good ones. The climb is a rocky doubletrack with crazy good views of the OC and sunsets. The descent is a steep, twisting, cliff-exposed singletrack, more like a carved half-pipe, that snakes to the final paved downhill.

Yes, there's a good amount of riding on pavement, but at least some of it is 40mph downhill... er... huh-hum... actually officer, I was going the speed limit of 35mph, I swear.

Need to Know

All of the dirt on this ride is US Cleveland National Forest and, unlike state/county parks, does not close for rain or darkness (night riding!).

Description

From Cook's Corner, find a good gear and go right (northwest) up Santiago Canyon Rd. Pound out the 1.2 miles of mildly steep pavement and bear right onto Modjeska Grade Rd, a much steeper, paved, first gear grinder. About a 1/3rd of a mile of pain later turn right into a dirt staging area behind a rusted, iron trail gate. This is the start of Santiago Truck Trail (STT).

The single/doubletrack climbs mildly through rocky terrain for 2.5 miles. Be careful not to ride off the trail when distracted by awesome views, especially at sunset. Descend for about 3/4ths of a mile to a rounded hilltop with a flagpole on its crown. This is the official start of The Luge.

An insane rush, this skinny, carved half-pipe plunges steeply down the side of a cliff face, turning and dancing right on the edge. There are a number of 6"-12" drops along its length, sometimes within the turns, sometimes one on top of the other. The trail ends at Live Oak Canyon Rd where you turn right and enjoy the 35-40mph downhill rush back to your car.

Contacts

Shared By:

Dave Gregg with improvements by Nick S

Trail Ratings

  4.5 from 67 votes

#137

Overall
  4.5 from 67 votes
5 Star
55%
4 Star
39%
3 Star
6%
2 Star
0%
1 Star
0%
Recommended Route Rankings

#21

in California

#137

Overall
506 Views Last Month
36,259 Since Jun 6, 2015
Difficult

0%
2%
14%
6%
78%
0%

Photos

Video of the Luge Down hill shot by DPCAero.com
Feb 10, 2016 near Trabuco…, CA
Riding The Luge
Dec 22, 2015 near Trabuco…, CA
Down the Luge. Shot by DPCAero.com
Feb 10, 2016 near Portola…, CA
Flag pole on the top of the Luge. Photo by DPCAero.com
Feb 10, 2016 near Trabuco…, CA
If you made it to the Flag pole - you made it half way! Now watch out for speed on the descent and some obstacles on the descent - be careful they come up fast! Better safe then sorry!
Feb 16, 2015 near Trabuco…, CA
My first time riding ‘The Luge’ cautiously.
Nov 26, 2017 near Trabuco…, CA

Weather


Current Trail Conditions

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All Clear 10 days ago See History
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Check-Ins

Apr 24, 2021
Dave Gregg
The Santiago Truck Trail climb has been made back into a fire road. The Good: it's easier. The Bad: it's boring. 21mi — 3h 00m
Mar 28, 2021
Maxx Byerly
Mar 14, 2021
Ty Chen Kuo
8h 37m
Feb 5, 2021
Mark Hartsook
Brake Bumps abundant. Beautiful view. 15.6mi — 2h 00m
Jan 4, 2021
Sydney Aveson
2h 25m
Jan 4, 2021
Chris Makowicki
10mi
Nov 28, 2020
Vien To
Nov 22, 2020
Pablo H.
with Fernando 7.8mi — 2h 06m