Mountain Biking

Why San Diego Mountain Biking Is on the Rise – Bike Magazine


Photo Credit: Satchel Cronk

Not a beach in sight. Locals Luca Cometti and Rachel Strait show off the other San Diego.

San Diego is known for a lot of things—namely craft breweries, beaches and perpetual sun—but mountain biking doesn’t always fall into the common descriptors. Trail access is tricky. Many networks sprouted from neighborhood trails built by locals in patches of open space over the years, and haven’t yet been sanctioned. And though the San Diego Mountain Biking Association (SDMBA) has made huge strides in recent years to gain approval and funding to build legal trail networks, California’s second largest city is still characterized by a mishmash of legal and illegal riding, without a lot of clarity on what is OK to ride and what isn’t. But that is quickly changing. SDMBA is close to cutting the ribbon on a 4-acre bike park that, when completed, will be the largest bike park in southern California, and the trail group has tirelessly championed projects that will open new riding opportunities and sanction existing trails.

Photo Credit: Satchel Cronk

Luca Cometti on the trails that helped launch his professional riding career.

SDMBA’s efforts are helped along by pros like Luca Cometti, Bubba Warren and Rachel and Kyle Strait, who call San Diego County home, and relish in the year-round training opportunities afforded by a place where ‘winter’ means daytime temperatures might dip below 70 degrees.

Photo Credit: Satchel Cronk

Left: Austin ‘Bubba’ Warren is the trailboss at one of several Crankworx-caliber private pumptrack training grounds in Alpine; the ground zero for recent American and global hardtail racing success.

Photo Credit: Satchel Cronk

Some of San Diego’s best riding is in Alpine, a hamlet east of the city that pros like Kyle and Rachel Strait and Bubba Warren have helped put on the map.