California Central Coast, Big Sur

The California Central Coast Ride

General Info

San Francisco to San Luis Obispo – NEW ROUTE! 

June 9-13, 2017

>> We're going to California's North Coast in 2018! Join the interest list to be the first to know when registration opens for the May 20-24, 2018 ride <<

Our California Rides bring together bright minds, breathtaking routes for all cycling abilities, and the unforgettable combination of passion and purpose. Over five days, we'll ride from San Francisco to San Luis Obispo, including Santa Cruz, Monterey, Carmel Valley, Paso Robles Wine growing region and Morro Bay. 


On this charitable cycling event you can choose from our full beneficiary list and raise funds to support climate, conservation, and active transportation.

The Basics

Trip Dates:   June 9-13, 2017  
Start Location:   San Francisco, CA  
End Location:   San Luis Obispo, CA  
Fundraising Commitment:   $2,800 minimum  
Trip Length:   5 days  
Activity:   Cycling  
Total Mileage:   267 to 324, with multiple daily mileage options  
Average Daily Mileage:   65  
Accommodations:   Campgrounds, Summer Camps (hotel options available)  
Maximum Group Size:   140  
Other Trip Notes:      

Important Dates

Note: If you'd like to register after or near a fundraising deadline, don't worry, we're here to help you get up to speed!

Fundraising Deadlines      
          $500 to be raised by:   April 14, 2017   
          $1000 to be raised by:   May 5, 2017  
          $2800 to be raised by:   June 2, 2017  
Transfer Deadline  

May 19, 2017   


Day-by-Day Info

Each day has shorter mileage options available, even if not listed below. 

Day 1 – 64 miles +3,900 ft gain

Climate Ride's new Central Coast adventure begins in the exciting city of San Francisco at 9 am. We’ll pedal through the historic Presidio and out to the scenic Great Highway where we’ll turn south, keeping the crashing shoreline on our right. From there, we’ll ride through the coast towns of Pacifica, Montara and Moss Beach before enjoying a picnic lunch in bucolic Half Moon Bay – known for its Pumpkin Festival. After lunch, we’ll continue riding south on Highway 1 to our camp for the night – a terrific eco-adventure campground and retreat center - where we’ll enjoy our first dinner and hear from informative speakers before turning in for the night.

Day 2 – 44 miles +1,800 ft gain

One of our shorter days, our pace will be more relaxed today. Following a hearty hot breakfast, our southward journey takes us to the eclectic town of Santa Cruz, where we’ll visit a picturesque lighthouse and ride into downtown for an on-your-own lunch – allowing you time to explore this vibrant seaside community. The afternoon brings excellent riding through a series of small coastal towns to our campground for the night.

Day 3 – 69, 80 or 107 miles, +4,700 ft gain

On the morning of Day 3, the epic cycling continues with the opportunity to ride 100 miles in a day. We begin today’s ride along the coast of the Monterey Bay passing Elkhorn Slough – a protected wetlands area – to a local farm store where we’ll taste some of the area’s best fruits and vegetables. Heading south, we’ll pedal past huge sand dunes and into the famous town of Monterey to refill on water and snacks. From there, we head out on the 17-Mile Drive – one of the most famous stretches of pavement in the world. This winding road circumnavigates the Monterey Peninsula and affords incredible views of the ocean, the Point Pinos Lighthouse in Pacific Grove, and eventually Mission Carmel. Our picnic spot for the day is in Carmel Valley where we’ll visit a ‘green classroom’ and learn about their amazing work with local kids. After lunch, the journey continues as we leave civilization behind and head into Carmel Valley for a scenic climb before descending along the Arroyo Seco River into the verdant Salinas Valley. The last few miles are ‘big chainring’ riding past endless vineyards and farms to our camp at San Lorenzo Park. 

Day 4 – 51 or 69 miles, +4,950 ft gain

Today is a gorgeous ride through a less-traveled part of California. We start out with a beautiful climb up to a hidden valley lined with old-growth oak trees. After a quick water stop near Fort Hunter Leggitt, we pedal on a winding scenic road between two mountain lakes before enjoying a delicious picnic lunch. The afternoon offers exceptional back-road riding into the heart of the Paso Robles West Side wine growing region. We’ll stop into a winery on the way before arriving at our camp for the night – an organic farm nestled in the hills above Paso Robles complete with camping, optional beds, a pool, and scenic views. For our final night, we’ll dine al fresco at the barn and then gather for our final evening program at the farm’s amphitheater built into the hillside, before turning in for the night. 

Day 5 – 40 miles, +2,500 ft gain

This morning, we head out on our final ride, with a quick stop at the coast! During the amazing descent from our camp, we’ll visit the famous Morro Rock – the last remnant of an ancient volcano – and stop for water and snacks. From there, we head inland to reach our destination for the week – San Luis Obispo. Tucked between the Coast Range, the Pacific Ocean and right in the middle of Central Coast Wine County, San Luis Obispo is the home of epic cycling, wineries and classic California living. Here, halfway between San Francisco and Los Angeles, we’ll enjoy our final picnic before retrieving our gear, boarding bus shuttles bound either north or south, and saying goodbye until the next Climate Ride. 

Overnight locations

Climate Ride Central Coast is a 4-night, 5-day cycling trip that showcases the best of California’s Central Coast from San Francisco to San Luis Obispo.

Each evening, we'll be staying at a campground along the route. On the final night, you have a choice of camping or staying in shared rooms at a beautiful summer camp. Amenities in camp include hot showers, a first aid station with 24/7 ice, a merchandise table, clean restrooms, massage (extra charge), and shared accommodations in cabins and bunkhouses. All of the nights are camping, so you should bring your tent, sleeping bag and pad.

If you'd like to stay at hotels during the ride on these nights, we will shuttle you to designated hotels near camp. More information about hotels you can book will be available in the Travel Planner after you register.

Breakfasts and dinners are handled by our caterer who will be traveling with us during the week. Think hot breakfasts with lots of options and coffee, and nourishing, tasty dinners with delicious desserts. Picnic lunches are prepared by our amazing food crew and include lunch meats, veggie options, salads, and all the fixings. Our morning snack table will have items to-go to keep you energized all day while riding.

On Climate Ride Central Coast, camp becomes a traveling village and dynamic community. In the evenings after dinner, we’ll gather for our Evening Program which features speakers, roundtable discussions, and other events. Cycling doesn’t get better than on Climate Ride!

Travel Information

The trip begins in San Francisco’s Presidio on Friday morning, June 9, 2017 at 9 am. If you’re traveling to San Francisco for the ride, you’ll probably want to arrive the night before and stay in the SF Bay Area. More detailed information about the ride start is available in the Travel Planner which you’ll receive once you register.

At the trip end in San Luis Obispo on Tuesday, June 13, we’ll have bus shuttles available (additional charge) destined for both the SF Bay Area as well as Los Angeles. The ride will end in San Luis Obispo after a picnic lunch. The bus shuttles will depart at approximately 2 pm (SF shuttle is about 4 hours, LA shuttle is about 3.5 hours). In San Luis Obispo there is an Amtrak station in addition to an airport with daily flights that connect to anywhere in the country. The code is SBP. 


2017 information coming soon


If your questions about the ride aren't answered in the tabs above, please visit our Ride FAQ page. Still have questions? Email us!