“A short segment of the Backbone Trail system, gentle grade, beautiful views, well maintained.”
— Doron Weinstein
There's no easy/fast way to get to this section of the Backbone Trail. Option one is to drive up Little Sycamore Canyon (L.A. County)/Yerba Buena (Ventura County) from Mulholland Hwy and park at the Mishe Mokwa trailhead.
Option two is to park at the Encinal Canyon trailhead and take the Backbone Trail: Encinal Canyon
to Etz Meloy trail (as of Jan 2016, there is a chance you won't be able to cross from the Encinal Canyon section to this section due to locked gates put in place by private property owners).
Family Friendly: Good for teaching kids to mountain bike.
The ride itself is really fun! The trail is well maintained - no overgrown vegetation or deep trenches - and the grade remains gentle for the most of it with some exceptions. There are two bailout sections that will lead you back to the main road (Yerba Buena) and there is an access to a (steep) fire road that takes you to Yellow Hill; an overlook peak.
The views of the Pacific Ocean and the mountains are amazing! And you'll quickly notice that you are indeed in the highest parts of the Santa Monica Mountains - Sandstone Peak (3,000+ feet) is just a few miles away.
The trail is 100% singletrack and is good for someone who's learning to mountain bike. There are not too many, if any, technical sections.
As always, have a bear bell on and stop for horses on the trail.