Hoppy Trails

Santa Rosa, California

Dec 21, 2010
Outside Magazine
Russian River Brewing Co.

Russian River Brewing Co.

You go to Sonoma County just for wine, right? Nope. Santa Rosa, the county seat, has some of the best beer (five award-winning breweries within a 35-mile radius) and mountain biking (some 40 miles of spectacular single- and doubletrack) on the West Coast. Set up base camp at the Hotel La Rose (doubles from $119; hotellarose.com), a few minutes' walk from downtown, and rent a ride at NorCal Bike Sport ($75 per day; norcalcycling.com). Then set out on the 4.5-mile ride to the west side of Annadel State Park. Starting on the Canyon Trail, wind up and over the park on a 20-mile maze of singletrack trails and fire roads (maps are available from NorCal Bike Sport, but getting lost is fun, too). Back in Santa Rosa, quench your thirst with a Pliny the Elder Double IPA at the Russian River Brewing Co. (russianriverbrewing.com). For dinner, cruise to Zazu (zazurestaurant.com), which serves veggies grown on the farm next door. January is warm and wet here—which means rich green hills, 50-degree temps, and the occasional downpour (pack Gore-Tex). The trails should be fine unless there's a huge rainstorm. In that case, head to nearby Armstrong Redwoods State Natural Reserve to hike amid the ferns under the cover of old-growth trees—or just wait out the rain at the Fairmont Sonoma Mission Inn & Spa (deep-tissue massage, $179; fairmont.com/sonoma).

Filed To: Mountain Biking