Freedom Day: Strawberry Peak

Discussion in 'Ride Reports' started by Rob S., Feb 14, 2015.

  1. Rob S.

    Rob S. Member

    Location:
    La Habra, CA
    Name:
    Rob Skinner
    Every year on February 14, I like to display gratitude for this date in 2012, when my Self-Righteous Defiance did battle with the Forces of Greed and Deception. When the dust settled, I was rewarded with 40 extra hours per week to do with as I please. Today's Freedom Celebration was a circumnavigation of Strawberry Peak.

    The last time I rode Strawberry was back in 2009, before the Station Fire. It was my favorite trail at the time, having a little bit of everything. When the fire hit, I figured it was all over. It was all over, for six years, until today. Thanks to a lot of hard work from a lot of people, the trail is better now that it's ever been. There were about five other rider's cars when we showed up, so we knew we would have a bit of solitude out there.

    For those who are not familiar with Strawberry, it starts off with three miles of steep fire road. The only redeeming quality of this section is the gorgeous view down on Los Angeles. Once you top out on the fire road, you're in for 12+ miles of single track. It starts off with hundreds of feet of delicious exposure. Once you're in this area, it's as remote as it is beautiful. Stopping periodically is necessary to enjoy it all, as you can't ride and let your eye wander from the trail. The back side of Strawberry is like a mini El Cap, it's steep rock. Eventually you've lost enough altitude that you need to climb back up to the ridge, for another couple miles of exposed downhill fun. You'll drop out at the Redbox Picnic Area, where you'll drop down into the canyon for another four miles of sweet downhill fun. The goodness ends at Switzer Picnic Area, where you get to finish with about half a mile of steep asphalt. End Of Ride.

    Overall, Strawberry isn't very technical. But it's moderately strenuous, with about 3200 feet of climbing. The exposure is such that you don't want to bring along sloppy riders. The upside is that there is a lot of variety on the trail, and it's bloody gorgeous!

    Destination: Strawberry



    Downtown L.A. and Catalina



    Saul's new Trance



    hundreds of feet of exposure



    Back side of Strawberry



    All smiles



    Severe Visibility



    Trail Posers

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    kioti and herzalot like this.
  2. Varaxis

    Varaxis Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Perris
    Name:
    Dan Vu
    Current Bike:
    Yeti SB5c ('16 Yellow v1)
    Thanks for the pics and RR.

    When I rode, I didn't even notice the exposure. I just simply thought of how well maintained the trail was and how nice the view was.
     
  3. rossage

    rossage iMTB Addict

    Location:
    East Sacramento
    Name:
    Ross Lawson
    Current Bike:
    Highball
    Strawberry Peak, no matter how you slice it, crown jewel of the Angeles.
     
  4. Mikie

    Mikie Admin/iMTB Hooligan

    Location:
    Lebec, California
    Name:
    Mikie Watson
    Current Bike:
    Santa Cruz Hightower/Yeti 5C
    Excellent Strawberry Peak rendition!
    Great write up and pics...
    I've only done it once and it was right after it reopened. Some sections were super soft but I have heard the rain helped a lot along with some awesome trail work.

    Now I got to go back!!!

    Thanks!
    Mikie
     
  5. BCrummett

    BCrummett Member

    Location:
    Pasadena
    Name:
    Brandon
    Current Bike:
    Ibis Mojo HD3
    Amen to that! I can't wait to session it again tomorrow.
     
  6. Varaxis

    Varaxis Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Perris
    Name:
    Dan Vu
    Current Bike:
    Yeti SB5c ('16 Yellow v1)
    Good luck on those steep switchbacks close to the peak. :D
     
  7. Rob S.

    Rob S. Member

    Location:
    La Habra, CA
    Name:
    Rob Skinner
    Meh. Back in the day, those switchbacks were so soft that we'd have to run paddle tires. And they were TWICE as steep!
     
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