September 27, 2018
The downhill section of this trail is a blast. Very smooth trail without many rocks. But you will have to climb for a while. Rode it today for the first time, but I wanted to write this review because none of the reviews I read was really clear on directions on how to get to the trailhead, or parking.
I parked on Old Ridge Route Road, at the sight of the old Hotel. This is also where the downhill trail ends. From there, ride south on Old Ridge Route Road for just under three miles. THen you will see a trail that is marked 7N23, on your left side (east side). This is fire road, and it is where you begin your journey. It will begin to wind along the side of the mountains and climbing. You will stay on this for roughly 6.5 miles. Strava said the total climb was 2400 feet. While you are climbing the fire road, the Golden Eagle trail, actually crosses the fireroad three or four times. when you get to the top of the fire road, check out the view, it is epic. At the top of the mountain/fire road, there are no signs indicating the Golden Eagle Trail. You will easily see that you are at the top of the mountain, and see some cut trees on the left side of trail, and when you look behind the trees, you will see a trail, thats the Golden Eagle trail. The map posted on single track is accurate for the trail itself, (Verizon gets a signal up their). and I checked my location on my phone. The beginning of the trail is a little slow going, but fun. You drop down and then back up again a few times. After about a mile, You get to have some real fun on the downhill. The trail is in pretty good shape, and is mostly smooth. Not too many rocks (strange for So Cal). The trail crosses the fire road a few times.
So the climb up was just under ten miles total (2 hours for me), 2400 ft. Probably 30-45 minutes to get down. My watch battery died, so I did not get an accurate distance for the downhill, but my butt says it was 6-7 miles. Make sure your brakes are in good working order, I took my one week old bike with Sram brakes, and they were howling a few times during the last couple miles. Fun Trail!!