• El Corte De Madera - #ElCorteDeMadera

    Norcal - San Mateo County - Woodside/San Mateo NickNames: #ElCorteDeMadera

    There are two good ways to get to Skeggs Point:

    1. From the junction of I-280 and highway 92 travel west on 92 to Skyline Blvd.(hwy 35) - take a left and follow Skyline south for about 8 miles to the Skegg's Point parking lot on the left (you can't turn left into the parking lot. continue along Skyline and make a U-turn). Mind the 50mph speed limit, because the Sheriffs are very active up here during spring and summer.

    2. From the junction of 280 and Sand Hill Rd, take Sand hill west towards the coast, make a right on Portola Rd, jog L at the fork in the road, and make a hard left onto Woodside Rd (hwy. 84). Take this to four corners, make right on Skyline (hwy. 35) and park at Skeggs Point.

    Thomas Guide page: 809 B4


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    • Trail RouteSkeggs/Corte Madera-The great fun of riding ECMOPP is how one always starts with desert(decent), so your guarantied to have room for it. Personally, I think it's a great way to warm up. The trick is not to drop 1200' all at once, but to traverse laterally as much as possible. Another plus is that there is not much in the way of attarctions or destinations for hikers, the benefits of which are I don't need to make clear.

      Off of skyline their are 4 entrances to the preserve, numbered 1-4, and a #5 & 6 are off Bear Gulch Rd., the south/western boundry to the park. If one enters from #1, hairpin left up the asphalt, pass the gate and make a left onto Sierra Morena (read sweet single track). Here you will skirt Skyline to entrance #2, keep going, allways losing enough, but not too much altitude to keep things interesting and dangerous. Beware of some off camber, blind, left turns which could lead to impaling on some dead oak limb. Pass entrance #3 and head up the fire road still parallel to Shyline.

      This will put you out onto Skyline at the house of the Park Ranger, anyway, keep going south on S. pass #4, and make a right onto Bear Gulch. About .5 miles enter #5, enjoy some quick drainage jumps down Springboard and left on first single track intersection down to Lawrence Creek, if your jamin this will take all of about 30 secs. Right at Lawrence down and right to Blue Blossom Trail. A mildly sloped single track that you wish could go on, and it does, until you reach Springboard again, only this time it's not as true to it's name. Keep heading down Springboard.

      This will put you on Gordon Mill FR(fireroad), the easiest way up and out of the whole preserve, only you've intersected it about halfway up. Go right and up till Crosscut ST. Left and up a challenging switchbacked singletrack to FR Timberview. Left and up some more to Manzanita, a rocky and somewhat tecnical ST tha will put you at the intersection with FR Methuselah. Keep straight through for a tenth to FR Fir Trail and right for half to ST Resolution.
      Here you are descending again at a good pace for 1.1 and right on El Corte Madera ST/FR for another .4 down and .3 up. Before getting to Star Hill Rd. make a left onto ST North Leaf Trail for some .7 of more sweet stuff. Go left at the fork onto Methuselah for another half and try to keep your bike in the air as much as possible. At this fork you will need to portage your alloy freind for .4 up on the right-most FR (towards South Leaf ST/Star Hill Rd.) for another half, it's worth the time off the saddle a little and the gain in altitude will pay back shortly.

      Get onto South Leaf ST and try not to grin too much cause the technical descent turns into a technical ascent and back a few times for the next half mile. At this next intersection you are introduced to Virginia Mill Trail FR that descends about 700' in 1 mile and has the drainage moguls placed almost perfectly for some 1.3 minutes of pedal free, aerial bliss. Please be advised that what I'm proposing here is illegal, and if caught your grin might be slightly inverted.
      At the bottom you cross the new plastic bridge and start an ascension for another mile. Join Lawerence Creek FR and stay rihgt for another mile plus of a long hair pin interrupted by a quaint wooden bridge.
      The next intersection is Gordon Mill FR to the right and Timberview to the left. They both will lead you back up to Skegg's parking lot only Gordon Mill is a sane choice and Timberview is more like Sisyphusing.

      This is only one combination of trails I found to be usefull in getting a sense what the place has to offer. There are many more trails and countless combinations one can make and should. Enjoy.

      Stevea 37 year old Weekend Warrior riding a SC VPFree from SF CA Posted:10/25/2006

    • Trail UpdateMostly Open-Mercifully, Skeggs is mostly open again. The west-side trails are still closed (both leafs, salamander and lower methuseleh), but the majority of the OSP is open. Check out the MROSD website for details (

      Did the Fir Trail DH for the first time about a week ago. Taken at speed, this trail is hot sex... air, ruts, and steep terrain - although you pay for it, as the climb back out Methuselah is long, steep and dumb. Fir is apparently under threat of closure, presumaby for erosion control reasons, which is a pretty sad excuse. Fir trail is steeper than your average ECdM trail, but from the map Fir doesn't appear to drain into any streams, making the call to close it based on silt runoff questionable. ROMP is vocally against the efforts by MROSD to close Fir, so if you feel stongly about keeping this trail open, get involved.

      Resolution ST is a fun little climb from ECdM creek trail to Fir trail- check out the remains of the DC6 wreckage at one of the switchbacks... 19 people died here in October of 1953 on an ill-fated flight from Hawaii to SF. The plane was named the 'resolution' giving the trail its namesake. Very creepy.

      Crosscut between Timberview and Gordon Mill FR is closed permanently. You can read about it at the ROMP website- apparently the trail was too steep for sustained use and dumps lots of sediment
      into the nearby stream. A fix is in the works, since this was the only really good mid-park access point between Blue Blossom/Steam Donkey and the west half of the park.

      Get out there, and be the ball.

      El Santo riding a Bullit from Gnor*cal


    • Trail UpdateSeasonal Closure-

      Closed until January.

      El Santo riding a Bullit from Gnor*cal


    • Trail UpdateSince Money$hizzle and I have our own message board here, I'll just keep posting my rides. Maybe eventually the three lurkers on the site who *aren't* from Socal will chime in and help produce a productive board.

      Park at CM03 on Skyline, go through the gate, make a left and ride the fireroad to CM04 (this saves riding on paved skyline for longer than is necessary). After the gate, continue right on paved Skyline until you reach the next gate on the right, which is the entrance to Steam Donkey. Drop the seat and rip down SD- there are two short *very* steep climbs that materialize out of nowhere. These are hard. I have yet to clean the second one.

      About 3/4 of the way down, Steam Donkey intersects Gordon Mill FR breifly- you can go straight on Gordon Mill, but you'd miss the last section of SD, which you don't want to miss. Take the left at Steam Donkey (it is signed), and try to hit the cut-out log with lots of speed. It is unusual to have as many possibilities for air on an XC ride.

      Make a right on Gordon Mill, and climb back up to CM03. Right before the gate, take the Sierra Morena singletrack on the left side of the fireroad. Take the "alternate route" for the climb, but take the other b-line route when you return the other direction later. Ride this past the CM02 parking lot, and continue until you hit Fir trail fireroad.

      Make a right on Fir, which will become paved and steep for a short section, and make a quick 170 left before the gate onto Tafoni FR. Descend Tafoni until the first junction- El Corte de Madera Creek ST.

      Fly down ECDM ST to the creek (you will have to negotiate a recently-downed tree, but other than that it is a crazy-fast ST descent), and begin the low-tech, very scenic climb up to the junction of ECDM ST/Tafoni FR. Make a left on Tafoni, and suffer up the climbs- they are steep and painful for about a quarter mile or so, and then get more reasonable. Take Tafoni back to Sierra Morena, make a right, and ride Sierra Morena back to CM03 where you parked.

      This isn't a super-gnarly ride, but is a good aerobic workout dropped into a very beautiful setting with options for side action. Steam Donkey is one of the best decents I have found in ECDM- it is a little rutted in parts, but is a tight ST that weaves through redwood stands, and requres skill to flow at speed. The ECDM Creek ST is phenomenally beautiful.

      Be the ball.

      Ride rating: Advanced
      Ride distance: ~10 or so Elevation change: maybe 2k
      Singletrack=30 (but all descents are ST!)% Dirt Road=68- climbing% Paved Path=2 (skyline)%
      El Santo riding a a squishy trail bike from San Mateo


    • Trail UpdateEl Corte De Madera Open Space-El Corte de Madera Creek Open Space Preserve has many steep and technically challenging trails. This is not a good place for inexperienced riders. It is a large, rugged, heavily-forested preserve.

      Posted:07/17/1999 ~ your local mountain bike site since 1996. - Terms Of Use - Site Map
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