5 Orange County Bike Trails

Five favorites that keep you mostly off the streets and enjoying a safe ride
Photograph by Emily J. Davis

Back Bay Loop
City: Newport Beach
Distance: About 10 miles
Good to Know: The popularity of this trail has only increased during the pandemic, so keep to your lane and be mindful of pedestrians, joggers, and horses, particularly on busy weekends.

Mountains to Sea Trail
From Weir Canyon Nature Preserve in Orange through Tustin and Irvine to Newport Beach
Distance: 22 miles one way
Good to Know: You’ll see beautiful landscapes along this designated National Recreation Trail and use undercrossings to stay away from traffic.

Huntington Beach Bike Trail
City: Huntington Beach
Distance: 8.5 miles one way
Good to Know: It’s a classic beach ride, which means it’s best done in the offseason and nonpeak hours. But if your goal is to enjoy the people-watching and check out the waves at a slow speed, this one has your name on it.

Salt Creek Trail
City: Laguna Niguel and Dana Point
Distance: About 4 miles one way
Good to Know: This wide, well-maintained concrete path winds from the ocean up through a golf course—watch out for golf carts—and residential areas. Pack a picnic to enjoy at the park overlooking the beach.

Santa Ana River Trail
From Orange-Riverside county line to the ocean in Huntington Beach
Distance: 30 miles one way
Good to Know: There’s not much shade in some places, but this is a great way to cover a lot of ground without using the same streets as motorized vehicles.

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