Placerville / Newtown Loop

Level of Difficulty:  Moderate (2100' total climbing)
Riding Time: 2.0 hours (moderate pace) Printable Area Map:  Newtown Loop  (Adobe Acrobat required)
Season to Ride:  Year round (except cold winter days)

Description:  This is a good ride in rural El Dorado county.  It starts at the Bike Path, then goes through Smith Flat, before heading to the south side of Highway 50.  The beginning of Fort Jim Rd offers a good stiff climb, but has light traffic, and is a good bypass to the heavier traffic on Newtown Road.  At Pleasant Valley Rd, you can get food by detouring 1 (easy) mile to the left (into the town of Pleasant Valley).  Pleasant Valley Rd has moderate traffic and no road shoulder, so be careful here.  After two very short climbs, followed by a nice descent, you turn off onto Cedar Ravine Rd (still moderate traffic), but then go onto Quarry Rd.  Here the traffic will lighten up considerably... especially by the time you reach Big Cut Rd - which has as little traffic as any road in El Dorado County.  A gradual climb follows with nice views near the top, before descending very quickly back into Placerville.  All in all, a great ride!

Miles   Directions
0.0  Start at Bike Path parking lot.
1.8  Bike Path ends. Turn Right onto Jacquier Rd, then immediate Left onto Smith Flat Rd.
2.1  Turn Right to cross Highway 50 on overpass (unmarked road).
2.3  Overpass ends, turn Left on Broadway Rd.
2.9  Road becomes Newtown Rd.
5.1  Turn Right on Fort Jim Rd (at bottom of hill next to creek) - begin stiff 0.8 mile climb.
8.0  Fort Jim Rd ends.  Continue straight (uphill) on Newtown Rd.
8.8  Pass Starks Grade Rd (another bike ride documented).  Continue straight
9.3  Newtown Rd end.  Turn Right on Pleasant Valley Rd (heavier traffic starts here).  You can detour 1 mile (easy ride) to the left into the town of Pleasant Valley for food and supplies if you wish.
13.0  Stop sign at Bucks Bar Rd.  Continue straight
13.3  Turn Right on Cedar Ravine Rd.
14.6  Turn Left on Quarry Rd (traffic lightens up here).
16.3  Quarry Rd ends.  Turn Right on Big Cut Rd.
17.0  Cross Weber Creek.  Begin gradual climb (next two miles).
19.0  Top of hill, turn left to go down hill (still on Big Cut).  Sharp corner to the right shortly after starting downhill, be cautious here.
19.3  Road becomes Banham Rd.
19.5  Banham St. ends.  Turn Left then an immediate Right on Sacramento St.
19.6  Sacramento St. ends.  Turn Right on Main St.  Go through the town of Placerville (all supplies available here).
20.4  Main Street curves to left.  At stop sign, go straight (under Highway 50 bridge).
20.5  Turn Left on Mosquito Rd (careful of traffic here!). Start of Bike path is 100 yards down road.