Great ride right from town and provides good elevation gain over a long distance. Even though Aptos Creek Road is a fire road, it feels more like singletrack as it has narrowed down from mainly bike use. Enjoy the beautiful old growth redwoods as you pedal your way to sand point lookout.
Family Friendly: Access to and from would probably be best from Epicenter Cycling in Aptos. However, this ride offers fun short loops with not much climbing and the best part is it's actually open to bikes!
Bring proper gear for changing a tire flat because this loop totals over 14 miles. Also, make sure to bring a good amount of water and food. You'll have amazing views from the overlook on a clear day.
Depending on where you start, you'll head N. on Soquel Avenue until you reach Vienna Drive. Head up Vienna Dr. all the way until you reach Wilshire Ave., take a left and where the roads end into a private drive you'll see signage for Vienna Woods Trail
. Drop into Nisene Marks State Park from here.
You'll descend for a little less than a mile before you reach Terrace Trail & Vienna Woods Trail
intersection. From here you have options, even though on the State Park map the trail dead ends at the creek, crossings are possible from all trail locations at this time. Anyhow, I prefer to continue on Vienna Woods by taking a left. Almost immediately, Vienna Woods Trail
will fork again in which you'll stay LEFT and continue down to the creek where there is an actual Bridge Crossing.
After crossing the creek, you'll be on Aptos Rancho Trail
and can either continue up to Georges Picnic Area and Sand Point Overlook or you can head right and back down Aptos Rancho Trail
into town for a shorter ride. All of these options are going to be easy aerobically with no technical riding except for a few redwood roots crossing the trail.
Old logging road used back in the 19th century for hauling out California coastal redwood.