Cycling and climbing by bike the top climbs in the San Francisco Bay Area (cycling Santa Clara, Santa Cruz, Alameda, Contra Costa, Solano, San Francisco, Marin Sonoma and Napa Counties).. This page contains the top bike climbs in the Bay Area (includes East Bay, North Bay, Peninsula, San Francisco and South Bay subregions) including #1 Mt. St. Helena, Napa County, #2 Mix Canyon, Solano County, #3 Hicks Road to Mt. Umunhum (north), Santa Clara County, #4 Hicks Road - Mt. Umunhum (south), Santa Clara County, #5 Alba Road, Santa Cruz County, #6 Mt. Diablo - Northgate, Contra Costa County, #7 Soda Springs Road, #8 Bald Mountain, Sonoma County, #9 Mt. Diablo - South Gate, Contra Costa County and #10 Welch Creek Road, Alameda County.
SANTA CLARA COUNTY’S MOST POPULAR BIKE CLIMB
Hicks Road/Mt Umunhum is home to the steepest five miles of paved cycling in California.
Hicks Road North and South up Mt. Umunhum (Ohlone for "resting place of the hummingbird") are the climbing tests of Santa Clara County. Accessed primarily from the San Jose (north) side, the northern start is ranked slightly higher on the difficulty scale. It does hit us very hard from the very beginning and carries 11.5% average grade to the turn off to Mt. Umunhum 1.5 miles up the road.
The Cube leaves no doubt where the top of Mt. Umunhum is.
The angular shape of The Cube is visible from great distance.
MT. HAMILTON, SANTA CLARA COUNTY
CLIMB MOST OFTEN FEATURED IN THE TOUR OF CALIFORNIA
Summit Mt. Hamilton, Lick Observatory at sunset.
Mt. Hamilton is the most featured mountain climb in the history of the Tour of California, having been featured six times between 2006-2019. Mt. Hamilton has never been a mountain-top finish in the ToC.
THE TOP BIKE CLIMB IN CONTRA COSTA COUNTY
Historic beacon tower top right of photo.
On a clear day this ride holds the best views in the Bay Area with 360 degree vistas. Mt. Diablo is a very popular East Bay State Park that offers many hiking trails, camping options, and excellent views of the Bay Area and east towards the Sierra Nevada Mountain Range. It is no coincidence that Diablo is “Devil” in Spanish, an appropriate name for this lengthy and challenging East Bay bike climb.
MT. TAMALPAIS (ALPINE DAMN ROUTE)
TOP BIKE CLIMB IN MARIN COUNTY
View from Mt. Tam, West Peak.
We have documented five routes to the top of Mt. Tam. Our favorite, from Alpine Dam, is linked above (other routes can be accessed on our Marin County Home Page). The greatest views of San Francisco and the Bay.
MOUNT ST. HELENA, NAPA AND SONOMA COUNTIES
TOP NORTH BAY -- REDWOOD EMPIRE BIKE CLIMB
This part gravel ride holds 360 degree views of Wine Country’s Napa, Sonoma, Lake Counties.
Mount. St. Helena as viewed from Ida Clayton Road, Sonoma County.
10 STEEPEST BIKE CLIMBS IN SAN FRANCISCO
Broderick Street #2 Steepest
We have ridden and documented the 10 steepest cycling climbs in San Francisco, plus Lombard Street (just because!).
MOST FAMOUS AND COOLEST
LOMBARD STREET - “The crookedest street in the world”
Just before the turn onto Lombard.