Bicycle Around Puddingstone Reservoir


Bicycle Puddingstone Reservoir

05.3.12

From the issue In Plain Sight

Puddingstone Pedal

Some bike routes simply pave the way to terrific views. Ride in point: the easy 7-mile circuit around Bonelli Regional Park's 250-acre Puddingstone Reservoir and adjacent Brackett Airfield. It's an interesting place to explore both water and air—using two-wheel ground transportation! (It's also popular with cyclists getting in some cardio laps.) Starting from the airfield—where you can get up-close to runways frequented by small, private planes—roll west toward the reservoir's waterfront, passing picnic tables, pavilions, and a few beaches. Your backdrop is the beautiful San Gabriel Mountains. Hills on the trail are more fun than challenging, and crossing over Puddingstone Dam provides the longest vista across its fishing-boat-dotted water. The north side of the loop joins Puddingstone Drive along the lake to close out the ride.

BREAKFAST BONUS: Refuel your engine with a fluffy omelet at Norm's Hangar Coffee Shop inside the tiny terminal at Bracket Airfield. Norm's has all the coziness of a small-town diner, with huge views of the San Gabriels. Grab a seat on the patio and watch single-engine and two-propeller planes take off and land.

Take I-10 east of downtown Los Angeles and exit Fairplex Dr. Go north for 1.2 miles and turn left to remain on Fairplex Dr. (avoiding the entrance to Fairplex Park Racetrack). After 0.3-mile, when Fairplex Dr. turns right, continue straight on McKinley Ave. for another half-mile until the road becomes gated. Turn right into the free day-use parking for Brackett Airfield. Begin biking straight through the gate, continuing west. Pass through another gate after half a mile and stay to the left on the paved road. Cross the RV camp and follow the bike path along the lakeshore. When the path turns away from the lake and crosses a bridge to a T, turn left (away from the swimming beach). Make a right at the next split to go under a bridge and up a rise. Cross Puddingstone Dam and turn right up Puddingstone Dr. (across from the entrance to Raging Waters water park). Bike 2.2 miles past the lake and airport to Fairplex Dr. Turn right, pedal half a mile, and turn right a final time to return to the parking at Brackett Airfield. Norm's is open from 7:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. The bike path is dog-friendly. No dogs at Norm's.

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