So my motivation for starting this thread is admittedly selfish, as I'm always looking for new rides (aren't we all) with good roads, scenery, etc. Share photos, maps, and directions, but save the epic photo essays of your weeklong epic from Monterey to Alturas for your blog.
Anyways, I think that most of us can benefit for a little refresher course of what's in our own backyard so I'll start:
1) Tour of the Unknown Coast - Ferndale, CA
Follows Ave. of the Giants through old growth coastal redwoods, climbs Panther Gap, decend into Honeydew. Rollers to the coast via Petrolia, then many more climbs & descents back to Ferndale. A true back-roads epic. Unless you're riding the TUC (organized ride) be prepared to be completely self-supported and without cell. Nearly 10,000ft. of climbing!
2) "Standard Loop" - Oakland, CA
Not really an epic, but my current "standard" for a two hour weekend or after work ride with some climbing. The route goes up Old Tunnel Rd and descends Pinehurst into Moraga. Take Moraga Blvd through Orinda, left on Wildcat Canyon Rd. At summit turn left on Grizzly Peak and descend via Claremont back to town.
3) Arcata to Patrick's Point Out and Back
(No map - sorry!)
One of my old favorites when I was in school at Humboldt. Mad River Rd. to Hammond Trail north. Continue on Clam Beach Rd. heading north till it ends at HWY 101. Get on 101 and take first exit towards Moonstone Beach. Go north on Scenic Drive into Trinidad. Take Stagecoach Dr. north to Patrick's Point Drive. End at Patrick's Point State Park. Retrace your directions back to Arcata and enjoy the tailwind!