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Immediately upon leaving Mile 13.5 on the American River Bike Trail you will cross the American River (photo below). 

 

 

 

 

Take a moment to appreciate this lovely spot.  In the fall Salmon can be seen migrating under the bridge headed for the Nimbus Fish Hatchery.

After passing under Sunrise Avenue, crossing the Hazel Avenue Bridge, and biking up the north side of Natomas Lake, you will make a right turn onto the historic Folsom Truss Bridge (photos below).

 

 

 

                                      

 

 

 

 

 

As you cross the river look west and view the venerable Rainbow Bridge (photo below):  you may see kayakers and/or rafters enjoying the river.

 

 

Now proceed on the bike/pedestrian path on the east side of Riley Street until you reach an intersecting bike path (no sign) and continue to Leidesdorf, Stafford, and Natoma Streets.  Soon you will reach Green Valley Road, which can be somewhat busy but has a generally adequate bike lane.  The Safeway Grocery Store at mile 20.9 will be your last opportunity to obtain food until Pilot Hill.

 

 

 

 

I always have enjoyed Salmon Falls Road. 

 

 

Some of the residences lining this road are very attractive.

 

 

After crossing a tributary to the lake (photo left), you will climb much of the way to Pilot Hill, where a small market hosts Rest Stop #1. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

From Pilot Hill you will encounter an easy climb to Cool.

Continuing beyond Cool you will pass the entrance to the Teichert Construction Company quarry.

Fortunately a fence conceals most of the of the quarry, but you still will get glimpses of this scarified area (photo right).

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Beyond the quarry entrance you may encounter huge gravel trucks (photo left).

Because the Hwy 49 descent between Cool and the American River is narrow (no shoulder) and twisty (little forward visibility), and because of the potential presence of these huge trucks, NEVER ride this course clockwise!

Riding counter-clockwise (per this ride's instructions), allows you to descend down this section at a speed not much slower than motor vehicles - making this road not unreasonably risky.  (Even so, I worry about this section every time I ride this course, even though I never have encountered a problem here.)

But riding this course clockwise would expose you to significant risk.  Don't do it!

 

 

 


 

Watch the road (!), but do enjoy views of the Foresthill bridge (photo below).

 

 

 

Once across the American River, you will encounter a steady climb up Hwy 49 to Auburn.  This section often has moderately heavy traffic (including some trucks).  But, although a shoulder intermittently is absent, I never have felt too uneasy along here.  I don't hesitate to get off the road if I see an upcoming truck in my mirror.  Once in Auburn the roads return to normalcy.

 

After a fun descent down Indian Hill Road (a clear day affords spectacular views of the Valley with Sacramento in the distance), you will stop at Rest Stop #2.

 

You next will bike through the "Loomis Basin" (photo below).  This is a lovely, low density region of nice rural residences; many provide homes to horses.  The roads are shady, pretty, and there is little traffic.  I have ridden these roads countless times. 

 

 

When you reach Orangevale you will return to the American River Parkway Bike Trail.  You must cross over to the east side of Auburn-Folsom Road in order to access and ride the sidewalk on the north side of Greenback Lane, which will take you to the bike trail access path.  Do be exceptionally cautious at the intersection of Auburn-Folsom Road and Greenback Lane, as traffic at this intersection is exceptionally heavy!

Back on the bike trail it is an easy fifteen miles to ride's end.  I especially enjoy the views of Lake Natoma (photo below).

 

 

Boaters and kayakers often are seen on the American River (photo below).

 

 

At ride's end you will have completed your circumnavigation of Folsom Lake!