Trail Mix: A Guide to Concord’s Best, Road-Tested Biking Spots

Spring is the perfect time to get out and explore Concord’s bounty of naturally beautiful biking trails. From scenic road rides to the most challenging hills, your next adventure is just a spin away.

Iron Horse Trail

Spanning a total of 32 miles, the Iron Horse Regional Trail travels a north-south route from Concord to Pleasanton and offers a safe, fun way to explore shops, restaurants, and parks in the seven towns it connects. Together, these two cycle paths form the main arteries of a thriving multi-use trail system in the East Bay as they intersect with other trails like the Briones to Mt. Diablo Regional Trail and the California Riding and Biking Trail.



Iron Horse Trail

Contra Costa Canal Trail 


The Contra Costa Canal Trail traverses Concord, Walnut Creek, Pleasant Hill, and Martinez in a 14-mile-long horseshoe shape as it follows along the namesake canal. This paved, mostly flat trail provides easy access to a collection of local parks, commercial centers, and public transportation, while also connecting to several other cycle paths such as the Iron Horse Regional Trail.

Contra Costa Canal Trail

Briones Regional Park

A quick 15-minute drive from downtown lies the peaceful open space of Briones Regional Park, where mountain bikers will find more than 35 miles of trails. The park offers primarily intermediate to upper intermediate trails, with the Briones Crest Trail Ride, the Lafayette Ridge Trail, and Old Briones Road Trail taking the cake as the must-do rides.


Briones Trail

LIME RIDGE OPEN SPACE

Lime Ridge Open Space is perfect for short or long rides with its 25 miles of welcoming shade, picturesque flowers and stunning sunsets. This trail contains some of the last remaining chaparral in Walnut Creek. Lime Ridge gets its name from the limestone in the area that was quarried by the Cowell Portland Cement Company.

There are many hiking, biking, and wildlife viewing opportunities through multiple plant communities and quarries.

Lime Ridge Trail

Mt. Diablo State Park

The Oyster Point Trail is one of the best options for those who love singletrack in Mount Diablo State Park. Miguel Vieira

Less than 20 miles south of Concord, this sprawling state park encompasses the namesake peak along with the surrounding woodlands and boasts some of the best mountain biking in the East Bay. Of the more than 60 miles of trail open to mountain bikers in the park, the Mount Diablo Summit Trail, Oyster Point Trail, and Diablo Ranch Trail stand out as some of the most fun and rewarding rides.


Couple Mountain Biking Down a Trail
Mountain bikers at Mt. Diablo

Popular Road Rides Near Concord

Those heading out for a spin on thinner tires will have no shortage of scenic roads to ride around Concord. The undisputed crown jewel of road rides in the East Bay starts just a 20-minute drive from downtown: the summit of Mount Diablo. This 12-mile climb ascends nearly 3,600 feet to the top of one of the Bay Area’s highest peaks via the park’s South Gate Road. Meanwhile, the lesser-known Morgan Territory Road ride offers a gentler climb which starts at the northern edge of Mount Diablo State Park and crosses through Morgan Territory Regional Preserve. This quiet, winding road clocks in at 15 miles (one way) and climbs 1,460 feet before offering up a thrilling descent (cyclists can ride one way and use BART to get back to Concord).

Another local favorite, the Carquinez Loop travels 24 miles around the Carquinez Strait with two long bridge crossings over the water and incredible views the entire way. Several portions of the loop take advantage of car-free cycle paths making for an even more peaceful experience.

empty road weaves through hills