Buellton: Santa Rosa-Jalama Beach

Monday, April 7, 2014

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Today’s classic ride has the best of what Santa Barbara County has to offer: quiet beautiful rolling hills through the vineyards, orchards and rich agricultural farmlands on Santa Rosa Rd. The route continues on Jalama Rd for the challenging climbs out to Jalama Beach for the “famous Jalama Burger” and spectacular Pacific Ocean views! 

We exit Flying Flags and head south on Avenue of Flags to the Santa Ynez River crossing onto Santa Rosa Rd.

Santa Rosa Rd is a quiet back road with minimal to no traffic that runs for 16.9 miles from the east end at Avenue of Flags to the west end at CA-1. The first four miles takes us along the flat valley through the multiple horse ranches and open farmlands.

The rolling terrain takes us up and over the valley to the beautiful hillside vineyards and wineries around Santa Rosa Hills.

The gentle terrain continues through the gorgeous valley with a few small humps and drops down to the entrance of Santa Rosa Park.

The short 0.3 mile climb from the park up to the ridge has an average grade of 7.8% with stunning views of the Purisima Hills and the rich farmlands throughout the valley.

Santa Rosa Rd drops down into the flat valley through the vineyards, orchards and rich agricultural lands.

The roads winds along the valley floor followed by another short 3/10th of a mile climb up to narrow gap with gradient ranges of 4-7%-enjoy the valley views!

Santa Rosa Rd drops down into the west end of the valley with expansive open farmlands and vineyards.

The Salisipuedes Creek crossing takes us up to CA-1; it’s a half mile climb with an average grade of 4.8%.

We head south on CA-1 to the turn onto Jalama Rd.

Jalama Rd begins with a very short pitch up to the wide dirt parking area and continues on rolling terrain to the bridge crossing over Salisipuedes Creek.

The next two flat miles takes us along the scenic valley through horse and cattle ranches, farm houses with weathered barns, open farmlands and vineyards.

The road ascends from the valley for 1.6 miles with an average grade of 7% and steep pitches of 10-11%. The climb has fantastic views of the Lompoc Hills to the west and the Santa Rosa Hills to the east.

Jalama Rd drops down into the valley and quickly rolls westward through the shaded woods for the next four miles. The rolling climbs that follow go on for 2.4 miles through the lower canyon out to the creek crossings.

The Jalama Creek crossing leads to the climb up the side of Palo Alto Hill; it’s 6/10th of a mile with 5-7% grades.

The road continues to wind around the hill to the RR crossing at Jalama beach Rd. 

Jalama Beach Rd drops down into Jalama Beach with stunning ocean and mountain views! 

We enter the beach area and make our way to the Jalama Beach Store at the north end of the parking lot. The store has plenty of indoor seating along with a few outdoor picnic tables. 

We both ordered the “famous Jalama Burger” with fries-it was yummy in my tummy. This should be more than enough to fuel me back up for the climbs or load me down-either way, the strategy for the return is take it easy and slow with no rush to get back.

Some beach scenes; it’s wonderful out here with temps in the low 80’s!

We reverse our way out of Jalama Beach and climb our way back up to the RR crossing.

The drop down through the canyon to the rolling climbs out to the open valley.

The flat run through the valley takes us to the climb back up to the ridge; it’s one mile long with an average grade of 8%. The fast descent drops us down onto the flat lands and takes us up and over to CA-1. 

We head north on CA-1 to Santa Rosa Rd. 

Out and back ride always offers different views of the same roads. We climb up and over the gap to the expansive farm lands. Field workers are out picking the day’s crop of rich collard greens.

We wind our way along the valley through the orchards and farmlands to the hillside vineyards.

The climb up the west side from Sanford Winery towards Santa Rosa Park is one mile long with an average grade of 5%. 

The last eight miles gently rolls through the valley floor back to Avenue of Flags.

This has been a perfect ride; we had SE winds pushing us along Santa Rosa Rd in the morning and NW winds on the return out of Jalama Beach. Life is great-we just need to stop and think of all the little things going right for us at various moments of the day!

This scenic ride is a wonderful end to our cycling tour around Santa Barbara County and Santa Ynez Valley! Too long of a ride for you? This route can easily be shorten by starting at the Santa Rosa Park on Santa Rosa Rd or at the wide dirt parking area on Jalama Rd off CA-1. Put this on your list of “must do” rides for a future cycling trip along California’s Central Coast-you’ll love it!

Garmin Stats:
69.01 Miles with 4418′ of elevation gain
Max elevation: 1117′
Max grade: 11%
Terrain: Moderately hilly

Weather” Sunny and hot with temps ranging from the high 50’s to the high 80’s. SE to SW winds with 49% humidity

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Follow this route for today’s ride: