North Bay: Nicasio-Tomales-Pt Reyes Station

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

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This is Day 1 of our North Bay Romp; today’s counter clock-wise loop begins from Nicasio with a climb up Rocky Hill on Pt Reyes Petaluma Rd. The route drops down into Hicks Valley for the challenging climb up along the top of the ridge on Wilson Hill Rd. It continues  along rolling terrain on Chileno Valley Rd to Tomales Petaluma Rd into Tomales for lunch. The route returns on CA-1 S along Tomales Bay to Pt Reyes Station for a snack stop at the Bovine Bakery.

We begin our ride from Nicasio Square on Old Rancheria Rd.

Nicasio Valley Rd runs 3.3 miles along the reservoir out to the open valley to Pt Reyes Petaluma Rd.

We head NE on Pt Reyes Petaluma Rd; the first 0.8 gentle mile takes us to the climb up Rocky Hill. The climb begins at the Clover Organic Farm sign; it’s 0.6 mile with an average grade of 7%.

The descent on Pt Reyes Petaluma Rd drops us down into the valley towards the Marin French Cheese Factory.

The road continues through the gorgeous Hicks Valley with fantastic views of Hicks Mountain and its surrounding open grasslands, meadows and agricultural farmlands.

Hicks Valley Rd leads us out through the valley pass the historic Lincoln School to the vineyards and ranchlands around Red Hill Ranch to the short climb up Hammock Hill.

The turn on Wilson Hill Rd takes us along the top of the ridge around Antonio Mountain; it’s a steep 0.7 mile climb with gradient ranges of 10-13%!

Enjoy the stunning valley views!

The descent on Wilson Hill into Chileno Valley is crazy fast-use caution!

Chileno Valley Rd is a beautiful quiet country back road with minimal to no traffic. The 9.6 miles of rolling terrain on this popular cycling road leads you through the scenic Laguna Lake, soft golden hillsides, open fields and grasslands of the surrounding cattle ranches and farms.

We head west on Tomales Petaluma Rd for the next 5.2 miles; the rolling climbs take us through the expansive open valley meadows and pastoral ranch lands towards Tomales.

The turn on CA-1 N leads us into the town of Tomales.

We exit town on CA-1 S on the flatlands along Keys Creek to the south end at Preston Point . The waterway opens up to Walker Creek into Tomales Bay.

The rolling climbs on CA-1 S leads us out along Tomales Bay through the small communities along Hamlet and Nicks Cove.

CA-1 S continues rolling along Tomales Bay with fabulous views of the shoreline and inland hills.

CA-1 S drops us down onto the flats through the town of Marshall.

The rolling terrain on CA-1 S continues winding around the bay to the short steep climb up towards Pt Reyes Vineyards.

We stay on CA-1 S along the open meadows around Tomales Bay State Park to Mesa Rd.

Mesa Rd is a great side road off CA-1; it leads us through a quiet residential neighborhood in Pt Reyes Station to the center of town at Pt Reyes Town Commons-our snack stop at the Bovine Bakery.

The short climb out of Pt Reyes Station on CA-1 N takes us onto Pt Reyes Petaluma Rd. The descending terrain has one short climb up towards Black Mountain Ranch and gently flattens out all the way towards the stop sign at the colored bridge.

We stay on Pt Reyes Petaluma Rd for the Spillway climb up to Nicasio Reservoir; it’s 0.5 mile with an average grade of 4.6%.

The flats around the reservoir take us back to Nicasio Valley Rd and Nicasio Square.

This is a beautiful route around the quiet country back roads of Marin County. Enjoy the ridge top views on Wilson Hill and ride through the expansive valley meadows on Chileno Valley Rd. The run along Tomales Bay on CA-1 S to Pt Reyes Station is spectacular! Put this on the calendar for your next ride-you’ll love it!

Garmin Stats:
54.81 Miles with 3530′ of elevation gain
Max elevation: 670′
Max grade: 11%
Terrain: Moderately hilly

Weather: Patchy skies with some late afternoon sun. Temps ranged from 57F to an afternoon high of 71F. Breezy SW winds with 72% humidity

Click here to view the interactive route map & elevation profile


Follow this route for today’s ride:

One Comment

  1. Nancy, Your color pallet for the cue sheet just makes it even better than before! jim

    Jim, Thanks for noticing the change! nancy


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