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Level: Beginner
Length: 65 mi (104.6 km)
Surface: Singletrack
Configuration: Out & Back
Elevation: +333/333 ft
Total: 47 riders

Mountain Biking Backbone Trail

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#582 of 987 mountain bike trails in California
#8017 in the world

The Backbone Trail will stretch from Will Rogers State Park all the way to Point Mugu State Park when it is completed. Unfortunately, large portions of this trail will not be open to mountain bikes.
To check out some of the bike-legal segments, click on the listed sub-trails below.

Before you go
  • No Drinking water 
  • No E-bikes permitted 
  • No Fat biking allowed in winter 
  • No Fee required 
  • No Lift service 
  • No Night riding allowed 
  • No Pump track 
  • No Restrooms 
Getting there
System trails (3)
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Backbone Trail Trail map

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Local Info

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Trail checkins

Jaymie Miguel (on Mar 27, 2019)
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Trail conditions

Dusty (on Mar 18, 2017)
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Camping & Lodging

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Backbone Trail videos

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Mountain Bike Trails Near Malibu, California

Intermediate | 20 mi

Rider questions

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  • RD3R

    The Backbone trail has amazing vistas of the Pacific ocean as you descend from Topanga Canyon to the pacific ocean. Most people probably park at Will Rogers State Park and climb up before bombing back down (careful to slow for any hikers coming up). However I was visiting from out of town and rented an awesome BMC Trailfox 29er the Topanga Creek Outpost instead. The owner was nice enough to show me how I could ride from the shop up to fire roads that connect to the backbone with some awesome bonus single track sections in between.The full ride from Topanga Creek bike shop to Will Rogers and back is about 25 miles and 4200 ft vertical gain, if anyone wants to try this route they can read about my full experience and Stava route here.


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  • nohyphens

    Trail system is not very well marked at all for mountain bikers. If you enter at Will Rogers State Park, you'll need to follow the trail system where the hikers and horses start. Unfortunately most of the trail marks will tell you where bikes are not allowed, rather than clearly designating where new sections of Backbone begin and end. Many sections are multi directional, as well. Great views of the beach and surrounding areas but just not a very well maintained system for mtb. You can put some serious mileage here though.

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  • memikee2

    A nice trail that has some fun downhill sections along with some good climbing.

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  • Eric Foltz

    You'll have a hard time finding a more scenic trail. The ocean views from 1000' up in the Santa Monica Mountains are outstanding. The trail is mainly non-technical ST with a little bit of fireroad. Nothing hard other than a moderate climb. Great place to take beginner/intermediate riders.

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  • Eric Foltz

    This is a great trail with fantastic views. It is really hard to believe that you are right in the middle of one of the densest population areas in the State. Lots of ups and downs but nothing too extreme. Just really good singletrack in a great location. A definite SoCal must-do.

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  • *****

    smooth man made trail ! Good work out just ride up and down mostly rideable! Lot trees and ocean Breeze make the trail cooler !

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  • Greg Heil

    Some great scenery, but very overgrown in spots. I haven't ridden this whole trail, though, and I imagine some sections are better than others.

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  • Grace Chua

    It's a pretty painful climb up. Not technical, just long with loose rocks in some sections to make it that much more difficult. The descent is so worth it, though. Lots of little natural whoops and rocks and lips to drop/pop off. There's also a steep rocky section that's narrow. Thankfully, that section has railings on the side with the steep drop off. I didn't find it overgrown. It's suitable for intermediate riders.

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