New Year’s Eve up Mt Diablo

Monday, December 31, 2012

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I’m closing out 2012 with a climb up my beloved Mt Diablo; it’s one of my favorite rides in the Bay Area! We meet at Heather Farm Park in Walnut Creek for the counter  clockwise loop through the Diablo Country Club for the climb up South Gate Rd to the Junction Ranger Station and up Summit Rd to the summit.

The sustained climb from the “hole in the fence” up to the South Gate entrance is about 2.9 miles with an average grade of about 5.6%. From the kiosk, the road levels out a bit with a nice little descent down to Rock City. The climbing continues up to Curry Point and takes you along the ridge with gorgeous views of the rolling hills and cities below. The last 0.4 mile up to the Junction Ranger Station has steeper gradient ranges of 7-10%.

The 4.6 mile climb up Summit Rd to Mt Diablo Summit has an average grade of about 7%. There are a few sections below Juniper that has gradient ranges of 9-11%. The road eases up quite a bit after passing the Devil’s Elbow and kicks up to a very steep 13-18% grade as you go up “the wall” to the upper parking lot.

The reward for the arduous climb is the dramatic panoramic views from the summit-it’s well worth the effort! This is from the CA State Park site:

Many visitors to Mount Diablo head straight for the summit to enjoy the famous view. Summer days are sometimes hazy, and the best viewing is often on the day after a winter storm. Then, you can look to the west, beyond the Golden Gate Bridge, to the Farallon Islands; southeast to the James Lick Observatory on Mount Hamilton at 4,213 feet elevation; south to Mount Loma Prieta in the Santa Cruz Mountains at 3,791 feet elevation, north to Mount Saint Helena in the Coast Range at 4,344 feet elevation, and still farther north to Lassen Peak in the Cascades at 10,466 feet. North and east of Mount Diablo the San Joaquin and Sacramento Rivers meet to form the twisting waterways of the Delta. To the east beyond California’s great central valley, the crest of the Sierra Nevada seems to float in space.

There are many Overlook areas along this 10+ mile climb to stop and enjoy the extensive landscape of oak, grasslands and chaparral covered slopes of the mountain; it’s very impressive! Come climb Diablo and experience it for yourself-the views are spectacular! You’ll love it!


Thanks to everyone for joining me on this super clear day up Diablo Summit, it’s a great way to end 2012!

“HAPPY NEW YEAR!” May 2013 bring more GOOD HEALTH, LOVE, PEACE and HAPPINESS to us all!

10 people in attendance

Weather: FABULOUS! COLD with sunny clear blue skies and no winds. Temps ranged from the low 40’s to low 50’s. 31F at Diablo summit.

VDO Stats:
38.2 Miles with 4052′ of elevation gain
Avg  grade: 4%
Max grade: 18%

Climb the mountains and get their good tidings.  ~ John Muir

Click here to view the route map & profile

Follow this route for today’s ride:


  1. we did this ride NY Day (today) and froze all the way down. brrr. we didn’t have the impressive views at the top due the clouds and fog. Thanks for the wonderful photos!

    You’re welcome! Congrats for getting up to Diablo on NYD, it’s a great way to kick off 2013! Nancy


  2. HI Nancy

    I have emailed you before. I enjoyed your Diablo post. I would love to do Diablo with you guys sometime. If you can email me a few days before I could meet you. Are you guys doing the Death Ride this year? I have signed up and so plan on doing Diablo a lot in the next 6 months. Feb 9th is my birthday. Since it falls on a Saturday I may lead a small exploration. I would love to have you guys join us.

    Thanks for your posts,


    Hi Brian, HAPPY NEW YEAR! I lead a ride up Mt Diablo at least once a month for Grizzly Peak Cyclists. Check out the shcedule here: We have no plans to do Death Ride this year but may get out and do the Alta Alpina. Let me know for sure of your birthday ride up Diablo; date, time and meeting place and I will mark it on my calendar to join you. Happy Riding! Nancy


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