Mills Peak Trail in Graeagle, CA – ride up, check out the views, ride down then share your trail stories around a campfire in nearby Mohawk Valley.
Grab a trail map from Yuba Expeditions in Downieville, CA or at Graeagle Market in Graeagle, CA. then head out to where HWY 89 intersects Gold Lakes HWY, stay focused on spotting the single track beginning immediately along the left side at the start of Gold Lakes HWY from CA HWY 89 just passed the initial dirt parking turnout.
Mills Peak Trail will take you up 3,033 feet to Mills Peak Fire Lookout where you can enjoy views of Gold Lake, Packard Saddle, Sierra Valley and more. The moss on the trees stretches down like electric green fishnet stockings setting your mind adrift if you let it. This trail is new enough and is far enough away from massive counts of trail riders that the moon dust almost always stays on course – not in the air.
Mills Peak Trail has pretty good flow, tons of tight, rocky and smooth lines. It’s screaming to be ridden, just hold your line and keep centered on trail. If you’re looking for a few rock slabs, occasional natural bumps and an A grade 3,000 foot ascent/descent then pen this trail in on your to-do list right above the Trader Joe’s run, bills and dirty laundry. The sooner you ride it, the better. You can shuttle it if you must, or harden up and swing the pedals round all the way up to the fire lookout.
Special note: this is real mountain bike trail. Not to say it’s hard core or anything like that, it’s just the real deal where speed makes for fun – makes for consequences – makes for thick chest hair. If you plan on attacking the KOM on the ascent, make sure you can see straight enough to grab the descent KOM on Strava to get your double chest hair sandwich from the “Knotty Pine” in Graeagle.
Thanks to the Sierra Buttes Trail Stewardship for this great trail. These guys are building bad-ass mountain biking routes in Northern California – thanks to Andrew Coughlin at Yuba Expeditions in Downieville for the trail map and beers from Under Cover Aleworks in nearby Blairsden.
If that doesn’t get you stoked enough then check out what they do in Italy and take some concrete pills: