Dog Beach to Sunset Cliffs Natural Park (3.1 miles, ↑85′ ↓30′)
This segment takes you through the heart (and soul) of Ocean Beach. Highlights include the Ocean Beach Pier, Sunset Cliffs, and the groovy, hippy vibe of the town itself. You can feel the spirit of OB in places like Winston’s, that features a Grateful Dead cover band every Monday night, the OB Farmer’s Market on Wednesday night, or sitting in the VW bus table at Hodads eating the second best burger in OB. Heresy, I know, but I like the burgers at Bo-beau Kitchen better.
From the end of the San Diego River Bike Trail, go into the Dog Beach parking lot and then exit on Brighten Ave by the showers. (I couldn’t make the route on the map go this way, but it works). Bike a block down to Abbot, which runs beachfront through OB to Newport. Newport Ave is the main drag in OB and a great place to cruise around to get a feel for the town. Much like Garnett Ave in Pacific Beach, a bulletproof bike lock is a must.
If you’re looking to ride, exit Newport ASAP by taking the first right onto Ocean Front Way. It looks a lot like an alley, but it climbs up to the entrance to Ocean Beach Pier on Niagara. You could take Niagara to Sunset Cliffs Blvd at this point, but if you jog over on Bacon / Coronado, you’ll avoid some congestion. Sunset Cliffs Blvd continues for another 1.6 miles from Coronado, featuring beautiful houses and sweeping bluff side views. Sunset Cliffs Blvd turns into Ladera and starts to head away from the ocean. This spot is where you flip and head home if you’re not into a hill climb.