Bear Creek Road - Boulder Creek Bike Climb - PJAMM Cycling

2.5
FIETS
4.6 mi
DISTANCE
1,426 ft
GAINED
5.9 %
AVG. GRADE

FULL CLIMB STATS

Page Contributor(s): Dan Razum, Campbel, CA, USA

INTRO

The climb starts a few miles from the intersection of Bear Creek Road and Highway 9 in Boulder Creek. The portion of Bear Creek Road between Boulder Creek and the start of the climb is rolling hills with light climbing. The start of the climb isn't immediately obvious, but it is where the road stops undulating and just keeps climbing.  
This climb has a 5.9% average grade (6.4% climb only).  25% of the climb is at 0-5% grade and 64% is at 5-10%.  The steepest quarter-mile is 9.5%.

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Roadway:  Two lane road with center stripe in good condition and narrow to no shoulder.

Traffic: Mild.

Parking: On the left side of the road just after passing Moonrise Road (on the right), and just before the start of the climb (MapStreet View). 
Provisions:  None on the route.  The closest provisions are either to the southwest 4.5 miles on Boulder Creek Road to Boulder Creek (Route Map) or 8.6 miles east in Redwood Estates (Route Map). 
Before heading out on any cycling adventure check out our Things to Bring on a Cycling Trip and use our interactive check list to ensure you don't forget anything.
Try some of the many other climbs in the area by referring to our Santa Cruz County climb page.  

Use the “Routes in Area” button on the menu bar to see other bike climbs in this area. 

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CLIMB SUMMARY

Cycling Bear Creek Road West

Ride 4.6 miles gaining 1,426’ at 5.9% average grade.

Climb summary from Dan Razum, Campbell, CA, USA:

The climb starts a few miles from the intersection of Bear Creek Road and Highway 9 in Boulder Creek. The portion of Bear Creek Road between Boulder Creek and the start of the climb is rolling hills with light climbing.  The start of the climb isn't immediately obvious, but it is where the road stops undulating and just keeps climbing.  

Climb start - 4.5 miles northeast of Boulder Creek

The gradient isn't too bad on the climb. Most of the work is in the first 3 miles and luckily that is also where most of the shade is.

Shade for ⅔’s of the climb.

After 3 miles we arrive at the ridgeline of the mountain and there are a couple of false flat sections.  There are also some nice views towards Santa Cruz.

Views south towards Santa Cruz.

The road is narrow, but not as narrow as the section of Bear Creek from Lexington Reservoir.  There are some sections with a shoulder, but unfortunately a lot of the road has little to no shoulder.  

Between “not much” to 0 shoulder along the route.

However, there are much better sightlines, compared to the Lexington Reservoir side, so a cyclist is much more visible to traffic.  There are a couple of tight narrow curves where a cyclist needs to be careful, but generally Bear Creek from Boulder Creek is safer than from Lexington Reservoir.

It's a good idea to have a flashing tailight on your bike, to help increase visibility whilst riding in and out of all the tree shadows on the lower slopes.  Overall, the climb feels safe as long as you are alert and paying attention.