Sacred Rides took great care of our group during the trip. The scenery, trails and people along the way created memories for the rest of my life. National Geographic’s Adventure magazine rated Sacred Rides number 1 for a reason. Mark Baeder, our guide, was friendly, full of energy, and always willing to go back out for more. Drew Rohde, Decline Magazine

Why do we require an application?

Our application process is in response to two of the most common questions our Riders have prior to booking a trip with us:

1) Am I skilled/fit enough to participate in this Ride?
2) Will the other people on my Ride be skilled/fit enough?

Ensuring that you - and the other Riders on your Ride - are a good fit for the Ride selected is of paramount importance to us. We want to help you pick the Ride that's perfect for you, and ensure that everyone booked on a Ride is on the right Ride for them. That's why we want to know a bit more about you - your mountain biking history, where you ride, how often, etc... - before we take your money.

We review every application and if, based on your responses, we think you're a good fit, we'll approve your application and you'll receive a link to place a deposit. If we think you might not be a good fit (either too skilled or not skilled enough for the Ride you chose), then we'll give you a call to discuss your preferences in greater detail.

Please note: our application process isn't about excluding anyone, or making anyone feel like they're not 'good enough' to participate in one of our Rides. It's about ensuring that you end up on the right Ride for you, with people of similar skill, fitness and riding preferences. In the end this ends up being a much better experience for everyone.

Get Lost. And lose yourself on sublime singletrack along Northern California’s most rugged and deserted coastline.  Breathe deep and let your cares fall away among the world’s oldest and tallest Redwood trees.

Starting in the quirky coastal town of Arcata, let your hair down as we sample some of the wild trails and unmatched natural beauty the north coast has to offer. Leave your cares behind as we head down to the Great Lost Coast, an area so rugged, the iconic Highway 1, which travels the coast from Canada to Mexico, was forced inland, leaving behind a slice of untouched coastal paradise for the exploration of the hardy few who make the trek to the remote outposts that dot the coastline.  

Here we’ll ride purpose built mountain biking trails, and hike desolate black sand beaches.  Stop and take a moment to savor the fresh coastal breeze on your face and realize that little has changed here since explorers first came upon the same shores. Inland, we’ll stand in awe of some of the oldest and tallest Redwood trees in the world. 

Read "Exploring the Lost Coast", Decline Magazine feature, May 2013 | Check out "Exploring California's Lost Coast", EnRoute Magazine June 2013

IS THIS RIDE FOR YOU?

You live for epic singletrack, spectacular coastal views and lush old-growth forest. You love fast, flowy trails, but don't mind the odd technical bit: roots and/or rocks, small obstacles such as 6" high logs, and the like. You're up for challenging yourself, within safe limits and under the guidance of expert guides.

  • MTB SKILL RATING

    6/9

    Level 6/Intermediate Advanced

    • You've been riding for at least 2 years and are confident in your climbing and descending skills.
    • You can handle moderately technical terrain and obstacles such as small logs (up to 6" high) and rocks.
    • You have very good control of your bike on intermediate and slightly more advanced terrain, and are comfortable climbing non-technical singletrack.

    click here for more information on skill and fitness ratings

    Level 6/Intermediate Advanced

    • You've been riding for at least 2 years and are confident in your climbing and descending skills.
    • You can handle moderately technical terrain and obstacles such as small logs (up to 6" high) and rocks.
    • You have very good control of your bike on intermediate and slightly more advanced terrain, and are comfortable climbing non-technical singletrack.

    click here for more information on skill and fitness ratings

  • Price

    $2,395 CAD
  • FITNESS RATING

    7/9

    Level 7

    • You can ride up to 6 hours a day at a relatively fast pace and with few short breaks over several days.
    • You can handle steep, technical climbs up to 800 vertical metres (2,625 ft) in a day.
    • You exercise on average 13-15 hours per week (including riding/being active).

    click here for more information on skill and fitness ratings

    Level 7

    • You can ride up to 6 hours a day at a relatively fast pace and with few short breaks over several days.
    • You can handle steep, technical climbs up to 800 vertical metres (2,625 ft) in a day.
    • You exercise on average 13-15 hours per week (including riding/being active).

    click here for more information on skill and fitness ratings

  • DEPOSIT

    $479 CADLIFETIME DEPOSITS
  • RIDE TYPE

    Singletrack

    RIDE TYPES

    • SINGLETRACK:for experienced mountain bikers
    • EXPLORER:for beginner mountain bikers
    • BRING-YOUR-PARTNER:for experienced mountain bikers and their non-MTB-ing partners
    • WOMEN'S:skills camps and Rides for women only
  • DURATION

    8 days
  • DATES

    May-OctoberSEE ALL DATES
  • CULTURE LEVEL

    Familiar

    Level Familiar

    • On our Familiar trips, Riders from Western countries/cultures will generally experience familiar languages and cultures, and experiences that are generally familiar.
    • While the riding and activities themselves may be quite adventurous and/or challenge you, you'll still find the overall environment quite familiar if you come from a 'developed' country.
    • If you're looking for something a little more exotic, check out our 'Adventurous' and 'Out There' Rides.

    Level Familiar

    • On our Familiar trips, Riders from Western countries/cultures will generally experience familiar languages and cultures, and experiences that are generally familiar.
    • While the riding and activities themselves may be quite adventurous and/or challenge you, you'll still find the overall environment quite familiar if you come from a 'developed' country.
    • If you're looking for something a little more exotic, check out our 'Adventurous' and 'Out There' Rides.

WHY RIDE WITH US?

  • Satisfaction Guarantee
  • Guaranteed Departures
  • Lifetime Deposits
  • Risk-Free Booking Window
  • Travel Concierge

Check out our Peace of Mind Policies

Day 1. Arrive in Arcata

Meet your guides at the airport, check into our hotel and join us for a welcome drink at the local wine bar in downtown Arcata, the hip northern outpost on our adventure.

Day 2. Arcata

After a hearty breakfast we get our bikes built and spend an hour warming up with some skills drills and then hit the local trails.  The handbuilt redwood singletrack never disappoints.  After lunch riders have the option of more riding, or exploring downtown before a historic lumber camp cookhouse dinner.

Distance: 14.5 mi | Elevation Gain: 2,300 ft | Optional afternoon ride 5-10 miles and 1-2,000 ft

Day 3. Bigfoot Country

This morning we head off the beaten path, deep into redwood country, to find one of the wildest singletrack descents on the trip. After a smooth climb deep into the forest we eat lunch on top of the ridgeline before starting our ripping descent down tish tang and Bushwacker. If you aren’t hoarse from the hoots and hollers on the way down, we grab a couple extra shuttle runs of the lower portions, before a riverside dip.  En route back to town, we stop for a quick peek at the local Bigfoot museum.

Distance: 15 mi | Elevation Gain: 3,037 ft | Optional shuttle run adds 1,000 plus ft of descent per lap

Day 4. Redwood Empire

Today we start our journey south, to the Humboldt Redwoods trails, where a beautiful redwood climb leads to a fast and flowy descent.  Caught on the right day, we get beautiful rays of sunlight streaming through the trees.  Either way we get a big singletrack descent down Thornton Prairie.  Post ride we take a walk through one of the largest glades of virgin redwood forests left in the world (some of the oldest and tallest trees in the world).  Here we bed down at a historic inn for the evening.

Distance: 13.6 mi | Elevation Gain: 2,941 ft | Optional 3.5 mile redwood hike addition

Day 5. The Great Lost Coast

After breakfast prepared by the proprietor, we pack the van and hit the road to sample some of the flowiest singletrack in the country on the the IMBA-built Paradise Royal trail.  After lunch we session the skills park before exploring a beautiful black sand beach before firing up the bbq for a relaxing dinner and hot tub soak at our oceanfront hotel.

Distance: 12.4 mi | Elevation Gain: 2,227 ft | Optional new trail adds 7 miles and 800 ft

Day 6. Paradise Lost

After a leisurely start to the morning our options include more riding on the Paradise trails and its skills park, or a day off the bike with a rugged coastal hike.  We grab lunch locally before heading south towards Mendocino, snapping beautiful coastal pictures along the way.

Distance: 12.4 mi | Elevation Gain: 2,227 ft | Optional trail above, or 6 mile Lost Coast hike

Day 7. Mendocino Coast

Today we head out for an epic tour of the Mendocino trails, featuring some of the area’s classics like Manly Gulch and Big Trees.  After a laid-back seaside lunch, we are free to explore the quaint downtown, snap pictures along the scenic bluffs, go for a river kayak, or if you have the legs, head out for another lap with your guides.  Save your appetite as tonight we eat at one of the best restaurants in town.

Distance: 18.5 mi | Elevation Gain: 2,484 ft | Can lengthen ride to 27.5 miles and 3,700 feet total

Day 8. Mendo Continued

Today we save the best for last, with some of the most fun handbuilt singletrack of the week. Post ride, we shower and pack up bikes,before hitting the road for a quick winery or brewery stop on the way back towards civilization and San Francisco International airport. Guests choosing to stay in the city are welcome to join the guides for some local nightlife before parting ways.  

Distance: 20.8 mi | Elevation Gain: 2,921 ft | Can lengthen this one as well in several increments

Average Distance: 15.31 mi | Average Elevation Gain: 2,591 ft

  • 7 nights accommodation in beautiful bed and breakfasts and hotels
  • 7 days of guided mountain biking in Northern California with experienced, certified guides
  • Healthy, hearty breakfasts, lunches, and 2 dinners
  • Transportation during the trip in our air-conditioned 12-passenger van
  • Admission to national and state parks
  • Full bike repair and maintenance toolset available at all times
  • 2 morning skills sessions with our guides/instructors
  • Chilled microbrews at the end of each day's ride

Arrival and Departure Airport

You should fly into Arcata/Eureka Airport (ACV) and out of San Francisco International Airport (SFO). This means booking a multi destination flight (or catch a ride to Arcata with your guides).  We recommend flying United, but if you want to fly another airline an aggregator (like igougo.com) should allow you to book your flights together. Airport pickup is at 7:45pm, and the airport is only a short distance from the Hotel Arcata, where we'll start the trip.  For guests arriving to San Francisco early, there is the option of a shuttle up to Arcata at 10:00am of Day 1 with our guides.
 
Please note: we do not book flights for our Riders - contact your local travel agent or use an online flight booking site to book your flights.

Pickup & Drop-off Information

We offer a free airport pickup and drop-off service at the airport. Please make sure to select this option when making your booking, or notify us in advance if you want to add this later.
 

The pickup point is curbside at the Arcata Airport. Our guides will meet guests at 5:30pm. Guests arriving earlier or later can take a short taxi or bus ride to our hotel.

If you are experiencing delays with your flights, please call our California office at 415-971-4593 as soon as possible, or call our toll-free line at 1-888-423-7849 (within North America). Please write down these numbers and keep them with you when you are traveling.

On the last day of the trip, we ride until about 12:00 pm, then drive to San Francisco, stopping first at our partner hotel the Best Western Tuscan Inn to drop off those staying until the next day or longer. We then head to the airport to drop off those people who are flying out that night, arriving around 5pm. If you are planning on flying home on the last night of the trip, we recommend you not book a flight departing before 8:00pm, to take into account any unexpected delays getting to the airport.

Extending Your Ride

If you want to extend your trip by arriving early or staying on after your trip, there are a few things you should know:

If you would like to add more days of riding, we can put together a tour of the best of the local area, with transportation right from your hotel.

We can arrange special pickups in Arcata or San Francisco if you are arriving before the start of the trip. A private car from SFO to San Francisco hotels averages $70-$80 plus tip. An alternative is to take a van cab ($50), shared shuttle ($20) or taking the train (BART, $8), but this may be difficult if your bike is not easily assembled.

If you are arriving in San Francisco early and would like a shuttle up to Arcata instead of flying, one is available at 10am on Day 1 with our guides.  Guests can meet at the Larkspur Ferry terminal (by ferry from SF, or bus from SFO).  Optional airport or hotel pickup is available for $50 per person.

You can book accommodation at the Tuscan Inn Fisherman’s Wharf before or after your trip if you want to be in San Francisco or The Grosvenor SFO if you want to stay near the airport for an early morning flight.

If you want information on places to visit and things to see in San Francisco or the Bay area before/after your trip, here are a couple of useful websites:

Visit San Francisco
San Francisco Chronicle Guide

Trip Cancellations

You may cancel your reservation with no penalty within 7 days of booking. After the first week, our regular cancellation policy goes into effect:
 
Please note that our cancellation policy is strict, and we ask that you do not request an exception to our policy. For this reason we strongly urge you to purchase affordable trip cancellation insurance.

Travel Insurance

Travel insurance, including emergency evacuation coverage, is compulsory for all our tours. We recommend that you purchase travel insurance that includes cancellation protection so that you will be covered in the event that you are unable to attend our tour (due to injury, illness or other unforeseen circumstances) or in the unlikely event that our tour must be cancelled. You can purchase insurance from our partners at bikeflights.com or worldnomads.com via our insurance page

Bike Rentals

Trek Fuel EX 8 and Santa Cruz Tallboy full-suspension rentals can be arranged through one of the local shops at a price of $450 CAD for the week and added to your booking at checkout. We can help arrange other bike options; please contact us with size, and style/model you are interested in and we’ll do our best to make it work. 

Traveling with your bike

Pika Packworks bag

If you've never traveled with your bike, don't worry - it's much easier than you think! If you don't have a case for your bike, we recommend one of two options:

1) if you think you may be traveling more than once with your bike, then we recommend purchasing a purpose-made bike bag. This will protect your bike from damages, and makes shlepping your bike around a little bit easier than with a rigid box or cardboard box. We sell beautiful handmade bags by PikaPackworks in the United States. For more information, visit our online store.
2) If you think this is the only trip you'll take with your bike for a while, then you can pick up a cardboard travel box for your bike at your local store. Some stores will also pack your bike up for you for a fee.
 
Alternately, you can courier your bike to California Bike-n-Bean in Marin. For $45 they will take delivery of your bike and assemble it. We will pick up your bike and have it waiting for you at the airport. Please visit their website for contact information and notify them in advance that you are shipping your bike, and also notify our office.

What type of bike should you bring?

We recommend you bring a solid cross-country or all-mountain bike with you on this trip, with at least 4-5" of travel, and no heavier than 30 pounds since there are several long climbs. A bike with at least 2 chainrings up front is mandatory, as is front suspension.

Tools to bring

  • multitool (preferably with chainbreaker)
  • tire levers
  • small bottle of chain lube
  • tire pump
  • suspension pump

Spare parts for your bike 

Although there are some parts available locally, we recommend you bring the following parts and gear with you to avoid problems in case of breakdown or broken parts:

  • rear derailleur hanger (at least 1, preferably 2)
  • extra set of front and rear brake pads
  • extra chain if your chain is more than 6 months old
  • 4 tubes
  • 2 extra spokes

N.B. If you are renting a bike, the above is not necessary (with the exception of a few spare tubes).

Accommodations

Accommodations during this trip are in beautiful, locally-owned bed-and breakfasts and hotels, on a shared basis. You will be paired with a roommate of the same gender for the duration of the trip. If you would like a single room to yourself, you can pay the single supplement fee during the booking process ($600 CAD).

Ride Additions

We have a few add-ons that will make your Ride even more memorable. These can be added when you make your initial booking or added later:
  • post-ride therapeutic massage with a RMT (1 hour): $80 USD

Fitness Requirements

You should have a moderately high level of fitness and be able to bike for up to four hours a day in order to fully enjoy the spectacular scenery and riding on this trip. This is one of our most challenging trips, and you need to be prepared.

We recommend you train in advance of this trip, in order to get the most out of this trip. If you are interested, our coaches Heather and Jason have developped a solid Pre-Ride Training Program to get you at your optimal fitness level. To learn more about this unique training program, click here.

Packing List

  • comfortable clothes for riding, such as biking jerseys and padded shorts. 2+ sets are ideal, 1 is a must.
  • helmet
  • bike gloves (2 sets is ideal)
  • lightweight, weather-resistant outerwear for riding in inclement weather.
  • warm clothing such as sweaters and fleece jackets and pants for nighttime.
  • swimwear
  • sunglasses/eye protection for sunny and/or muddy days.
  • hydration system that can carry at least 2 litres (bottles and/or hydration pack)
  • toiletries i.e. toothbrush, shampoo, soap
  • towel
  • camera
  • sunscreen and insect repellent

Laundry

Most of the hotels and B&Bs we are staying at offer laundry service, or there is a laundromat nearby. At most you will go 2 days without having access to laundry, so ensure that you have at least 2 days' worth of riding clothes with you.

Internet

Most of the hotels and B&Bs we are staying at offer free wi-fi service, or it is available nearby.

Ride Guarantee

We're so sure you'll have an amazing time on this Ride that we offer a Ride Guarantee: if you're not fully satisfied with your Ride we'll offer you a free Ride of equal or lesser value. If you're still not satisfied with the 2nd trip, we'll refund your initial money!

Name Bio My 'Sacred Ride'

Leah Mcleod
Born and raised in Northern California, I've always loved being outdoors. From competitive horseback riding early in life, to hiking, kayaking and stand-up paddle boarding, I love getting out and exploring nature, especially on our Explorer... The flowy Paradise Royal trail, combined with a scenic Lost Coast hike and finishing with a sunset glass of wine on the beach. It's paradise alright!

Nyal Mellor
I'm originally from England - the land of warm beer, fish n' chips and Steve Peat. I moved to California 4 years ago to enjoy the endless summers, lack of mud and superb mountain biking. Equally at home on epic cross country trails on the...[more] My 'Sacred Ride' would have to be the Big Boulder trail, an infrequently used, narrow ribbon of singletrack that descends 2000 ft through pine trees and best done at warp speeds!

Mark Baeder
Raised in California, I've been guiding with Sacred Rides for the last 3 seasons. I'm the Lead Guide in California, as well as running day trips with Mountain Bike San Francisco. I'm an IMBA Certified Mountain Bike Guide and Skills... It's a tough call between Manly Gulch, a sweet flowy descent, or Paradise Royal, a remote singletrack loop after a fresh rain.
  • The Great Lost Coast Adventure - mountain biking with Sacred Rides Mountain Bike Adventures in northern California

Below you will find some of the videos for this Ride. Please keep in mind that some of these videos may have been recorded by our guides and the speeds they are riding at aren't necessarily indicative of the speeds you'll be riding at!

The Great Lost Coast Adventure
RIDE ADD-ONS
Ride enhancements (MTB rentals, single rooms, etc...)
ADD-ON PRICE
Single Room Upgrade$500.00 CAD
Full-suspension Mountain Bike Rental$500.00 CAD
1-hour post-ride massage$100.00 CAD
Trip extensions (extra hotel nights + packages)
ADD-ON PRICE
Extra post-Ride hotel nights (single)$125.00 CAD
Extra pre-Ride hotel nights (double)$150.00 CAD
Extra pre-Ride hotel nights (single)$125.00 CAD
Extra post-Ride hotel nights (double)$150.00 CAD
Merchandise (t-shirts, jerseys, jackets, bike bags, etc...)
ADD-ON PRICE
Sacred Rides jersey (XC)$65.00 CAD
Sacred Rides riding jacket$70.00 CAD
Sacred Rides T-shirt (men's)$25.00 CAD
Sacred Rides t-shirt (women's)$25.00 CAD
Other
ADD-ON PRICE
Donation to Bikes Without Borders$20.00 CAD

Book Your Spot!

To book your spot on this Ride, click on one of the Booking links below to put down your deposit. The deposit is fully refundable for 14 days after booking, giving you 2 weeks to sort out flights, vacation time, etc... and not have someone else take your spot(s)!


All departures are guaranteed to run - we'll never cancel a trip due to low numbers!

And we're so certain that you'll have the experience of a lifetime on this Ride that we back it with our Ride Guarantee!

Why do we require an application?

Our application process is in response to two of the most common questions our Riders have prior to booking a trip with us:

1) Am I skilled/fit enough to participate in this Ride?

2) Will the other people on my Ride be skilled/fit enough?

Ensuring that you - and the other Riders on your Ride - are a good fit for the Ride selected is of paramount importance to us. We want to help you pick the Ride that's perfect for you, and ensure that everyone booked on a Ride is on the right Ride for them. That's why we want to know a bit more about you - your mountain biking history, where you ride, how often, etc... - before we take your money.

We review every application and if, based on your responses, we think you're a good fit, we'll approve your application and you'll receive a link to place a deposit. If we think you might not be a good fit (either too skilled or not skilled enough for the Ride you chose), then we'll give you a call to discuss your preferences in greater detail.

Please note: our application process isn't about excluding anyone, or making anyone feel like they're not 'good enough' to participate in one of our Rides. It's about ensuring that you end up on the right Ride for you, with people of similar skill, fitness and riding preferences. In the end this ends up being a much better experience for everyone.

2014
Start Date Pickup Location & Time End Date Dropoff Location & Time Price Deposit Booking Private?
Friday, May 16, 2014 Arcata Airport, 7:45 pm Monday, May 19, 2014 San Francisco Airport, 5 pm 1,100.00 CAD 220.00 CAD Book Now!
Friday, May 30, 2014 Arcata Airport, 7:45 pm Friday, June 6, 2014 San Francisco Airport, 5 pm 2,395.00 CAD 480.00 CAD Book Now!
Friday, June 20, 2014 Arcata Airport, 7:45 pm Friday, June 27, 2014 San Francisco Airport, 5 pm 2,395.00 CAD 480.00 CAD Book Now!
Friday, August 22, 2014 Arcata Airport, 7:45 pm Friday, August 29, 2014 San Francisco Airport, 5 pm 2,395.00 CAD 480.00 CAD Book Now!
"#1 MOUNTAIN BIKE TOUR COMPANY ON EARTH"

National Geographic Adventure

"BEST MOUNTAIN BIKE OUTFITTER"

-OUTSIDE MAGAZINE 2014