Gravel routes out of Carmel/Monterey

I’m going to be in Monterey for a week, and am wanting to take my gravel bike. When looking on and Strava I don’t see any routes come up, but I see lots of small looking roads in the hills.

Just looking to find some loops without having to spend hours on googlemaps streetview. To me it looks like segment C could become a loop back down to the West, but then odd that it’s not a segment.

Any suggestions of loops, looking for 1-3hr loops. Probably do a 60-90 min ride each morning, and then have one day when I can get in a 3hr ride. Perhaps the old coast road down at Big Sur?

Old coast road


Not much gravel out here. If you want 90ish minutes there’s Fort Ord… no cars and some good hills. You may want to stick to the roads one day and ride out to Pebble Beach or Carmel via Sunset Drive & 17 mile drive. Mountain bike might be better… you can ride pretty much anything in Fort Ord + ride pipeline in Toro. Plus it opens up all the awesome trails up in Santa Cruz if you want to take a short drive.

A few tips…
It’s cold and foggy lately. Dress warm, especially in the mornings.
Don’t ride the “gravel” out by Big Sur and up in the mountains (if you can find it). The illegal grow farms don’t like people out there.

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@Jolyzara Thank you. I’ll avoid the big sur area. I’m driving there, so can thrown the hardtail in. The main person I’m riding with will be on a gravel bike, so the mtb would be solo rides.

With Carmel Valley, there did seem to be many dead end climbs up the side roads of the main valley road. I was wondering about that. Ride along the valley and pop up a climb, back down and onto the next. And then there’s a loop at the end of the valley, but I’d have drive to get there due to time constraints.

I’d been thinking about Santa Cruz, but just don’t have time. If I’m out the door by 6am, I can squeeze in 2hrs each morning and have time before I have to be back. Last year I did a 20km loop to Captain and Stoker for morning coffee, and the 17 mile drive loop through Carmel for a longer ride. This year I wanted to get further out of the town. The mountain bike option sounds good though, so I’ll look on trailforks and see I can load some loops.


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Second Fort Ord. You can be as under or over biked as you want with tons of route options

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