The turnaround point on this course is near the top of the so called “Black Bart’s Trail”. There are so many landmarks around here attributed to Bart that you have to take it all with a grain or two of salt. In any case, the ride up the colorfully named Road A provides some excellent vistas of Lake Mendocino, and by the time you get to the top its quite spectacular.
The surface is generally good clean asphalt with very narrow shoulders but traffic is pretty light. Clean asphalt till you reach the gravel part that is. From there on its steep, loose, dusty, dry 1″ gravel and requires a certain amount of finesse to stay upright. I’ve been told the road goes through to Potter Valley but I’ve not yet ridden the part past where the “Private Property” sign is turned perpendicular to the road. Next time tho, and I’ll bring the camera too.
I come back via Road B, where the track (below) veers north after the turn around. Again the road is narrow but winding and lots of fun. Beware of stray livestock and the occasional “surface irregularity”, but enjoy the run. Once back to the bottom lands its back north on East Road to Redwood Valley and a quick stop for hydration and a game of pool at Vic’s Place.
And, to close the evening, the long flat loop up East Road where it joins Tomki and West Roads, then back through the vineyards to the office. Happy Birthday America!
Black Bart Loop
Ok, July 20th and I made it over the top on Black Bart Trail and down into Potter Valley, with camera in tow. Got some pretty good photos including three of a California Green Rattlesnake. The folks of Potter Valley were warm and hospitable and more than happy to pose for the camera.
Totals: Distance; 36.61 mi., Ride time; 3:36:53, Ascent; 2360′
Rd. A – Black Bart-Potter Valley
The gallery below displays the geo-tagged images shown on the map above.
Start of the climb
Picture 1 of 35
Base of Rd. A, grade varies from 5% - 14%, surface is adequate, shoulders are non-existent, traffic is fairly light.
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