LA --> Santa Clarita
I'm trying to plan a route starting from the Westwood/Beverly Hills area of LA to Santa Clarita. I'm just a bit stuck on which roads to take.
I am only familiar with riding Sepulvida, Beverly Glen, Benedict Canyon, and Cold Water Canyon to get over the hill (Cold Water is out of the question-too dangerous).
I was thinking about taking Sepulvida all the way for the climb and ride through the valley, as it is a straight shot and there is a bike lane on the hill. I'm confused about what to do once I reach the edge of the valley. I see I can take San Fernando Road to Sierra Highway but I have no idea if this is a good place to ride. I can also stay on San Fernando and take to the "Old Road". Clearly I am not familiar with that area and I just need to know the best way to go about this.
This is generally what I have in mind.
Thanks in advance for feedback
It's going to come down to time of day. Rush hour would be a BIG pain right at the base of the pass (where Balboa meets San Fernando, or where Foothill meets Sierra Hwy). Any other time of day would be much better! But, I have taken Foothill to Sierra Hwy and also Balboa to The Old Rd (as well as Sierra Hwy) at 5:30--6pm on my commute home and it's do-able. You just need to be comfortable in traffic and hold a straight line.
Getting to either of these are a multitude of roads. Check out Google Maps.
At the top of Balboa with 2-miles left until reaching San Fernando, there's a nice bike lane; but not before that and it's always busy during rush-hour. You could avoid that by taking Woodley Ave north (has bike lane for most of it) past Rinaldi until it connects to Balboa, right where Balboa's bike lane begins. (There's a very steep section of Woodley just past Rinaldi for 1/3-mile, probably 12%+, with ascending, stair-step/rollers until hitting Balboa. I come down the opposite way maintaining 25-30mph with little effort, so it will be a bit of a grind.)
Sepulveda has lots of traffic, but 3 lanes for room, but rush hour would be tight. Instead, maybe White Oak to Chase, west over to Lindley then north through CSUN? Work your way up to San Fernando Mission, going east over to Woodley.
Well, that's a start anyway...
thanks! I may set off early in the morning but probably still hit rush hour traffic. I'm fine riding in traffic though.
I just hope I can do this on my fixed gear, my road bike is temporarily out of commission. I may go single speed with a low gearing
 I still have a decent mtb. I may swap the pedals and seat and go!
Last edited by hairnet; 08-15-09 at 08:59 PM.
Despite all my rage, I am
I've done it taking Angeles Crest. (The Tour of California route.) If you're not pressed for time, (and if you get your road bike working), this would be my route.
Traffic in the morning would be coming in a different direction and much more manageable/pleasant.
Originally Posted by hairnet
Other than the steep climb I referred to earlier, there's a sustained climb up Sierra Hwy and one up The Old Road. But, they only average probably 6-7%. Similar to Sepulveda near the top.
I'm supposed to ride tomorrow but it seems like the air quality is just too poor because of the fires
And it's going to be hot out there.
Getting to the north end of the Valley you have many options for main roads and parallel less-travelled routes. Once you're in the far north, below Newhall Pass, Balboa is the only route for a couple of miles. Then you reach the Old Road.
There's interesting history in the area. When the stagecoach ran in 1858, they had a rough route through Newhall Pass. The Army upgraded it by digging a deep cut, called Beale's Cut for the general who planned it, through the high point. The cut is still there. You can walk through it. Underneath is the railroad tunnel, Southern Pacific, finished in 1876. When cars came along people wanted better roads, so Beale's Cut was bypassed by various routes, one being the Old Road. It continues north to Castaic, then up onto the ridges leading past Liebre Mountain. The Old Ridge Route is a great ride, but unmaintained.
Tee Hee Hee
We do a casual century starting near the I5 truck scales in the Valencia industrial park to Marina Del Rey and back. Outbound: San Fernando Rd, Sierra Hwy, Balboa, Topanga... Return: Sepulveda, Busway, Woodley, Balboa, Old Rd... We add the Poe Pkwy climb in Stevenson's Ranch to make it 103mi.
I assume you'll enter the valley by the Sepulveda Pass. We do a water stop at the Whole Foods at the bottom on the Valley side then continue up Sepulveda to L on the Busway bike path just past Oxnard. We take that to R on Woodley. Going up Woodley, there's a short steep climb at Plumber to Lassen, then a doozy at Rinaldi to Balboa. R on Balboa is a descent which we take across the bridge over the I5 to L on Foothill. We do this to avoid the Old Rd section from Balboa to Sierra Hwy which is a sketchy section with curves and little or no shoulder. Foothill has a short climb then descent to L on Sierra Hwy, under the I5, then R on Old Rd. A mile or so climb and then you're descending into Santa Clarita.
Maybe we'll see you out there one day.
I have a friend who lives in Lancaster. I want to ride from Santa Monica to his house someday; we've been looking at routes. Thanks for the tip on using Foothill.
cool, thanks for the info! I don't think I'll be going on centuries any time soon because I'll be stuck on my fixie for a while and I don't like it enough for long rides
Originally Posted by Xyrlicious