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Bicycling Pebble Beach

Locals who bike Pebble Beach—including Bicycling MontereyNaval Postgraduate School Foundation Cycling ClubVelo Club Monterey, and others—emphasize to visitors and locals alike:
  • Pebble Beach is a private community, so biking there is a privilege, not a right.
  • Avoid behavior that could get all privileges to bike in Pebble Beach revoked.
  • Be a good ambassador for biking. See special areas of concern in this post, along with the usual—follow safe riding practices, bike polite, and obey all traffic laws. That includes proper lane usage and stopping at every stop sign.
  • Keep in mind too that racing is not appropriate for 17-Mile Drive. See alternates below.
  • Also note that bicycling is temporarily restricted in Pebble Beach on some dates (more about restricted dates below).
On 17-Mile Drive, there are long stretches of  narrow, winding road with no real shoulder. Winding areas with very tight turns include the stretch from Cypress Point to the Lodge to Huckleberry. If you’re on a group ride, ride single file, not three abreast.

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What else to know about

bicycling Pebble Beach

Above: Naval Postgraduate School Foundation Cycling Club member Dena Donnell found bicycling Pebble Beach a fun way to spend her eighth month of waiting for baby. (Photo courtesy of the Donnell family.) 

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Since founding Bicycling Monterey in May 2009, the founder has donated well over 10,000 hours to the Bicycling Monterey projects, including this website.
Contributions to help support this public service are appreciated.

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Unless you’re experienced, it is most appropriate to bike only a section of 17-Mile Drive. See “Solution for the less experienced” below.
No gate entrance fee for bikes

Check with Pebble Beach Company for any updates or changes to their policies.

Traditionally, people riding bicycles are admitted at the Pebble Beach gates free of charge.

As the Pebble Beach Company website indicates, motorcycles are prohibited. If you have an electric bicycle, no problem. However, if your wheels are in the scooter category–such as a two-stroke–be forewarned: Scooters, as with motorcycles, are not admitted to PB. For questions or any updates to that policy, contact Pebble Beach Company.

Temporary closures during special event weeks

Bicycling is allowed in Pebble Beach 7 days a week, with some exceptions during special event weeks, such as AT&T Pro-Am and the Concours d’Elegance.  Scroll down to “Restricted Dates.”

Temporary closures due to road maintenance/construction

There may occasionally be temporary closures due to road construction, e.g., Holman Highway 68 Roundabout construction. These may be listed in the current Cone Zone Report from the Transportation Agency for Monterey County. “Cone Zone Report” is indexed in Bicycling Monterey’s directory of Monterey County bicycling resources.

Things to know about pedaling Pebble

Drinking water

Be sure your drinking water bottles are filled up before you set out on 17-Mile Drive, as watering stations are few and far between.

As with all of Monterey County—and as was mentioned on past Transportation Agency for Monterey County bike maps—you may fill up your water bottles for free at any public fire station. This is true for fire stations in Pebble Beach:

  • 3101 Forest Lake Road #B (Forest Lake and Lopez)
  • 4180 17-Mile Drive (Carmel Hill station, just inside Highway 1 gate)
Speaking of water…

Sure, you want to stay hydrated. And there are plenty of dining spots in Pebble Beach where you can purchase a meal or beverages, then make use of the restrooms. There are also public bathrooms in other locations, such as at the Bird Rock parking lot. And no, it isn’t okay to answer “the call of nature” in other places (e.g., it is not okay to use Spanish Bay parking lot as a urinal). Enough said.

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Entire 17-Mile Drive? Best for the experienced people who bike

Although there are adequate bike lanes along miles of beautiful stretches of Pebble Beach, many sections of 17-Mile Drive and other PB roads have no real bike lanes.  That means that they are best suited to experienced people with a lot of bicycling road savvy. 

Solution for the less experienced:  Bike part-way

Less experienced people who bike, including children and teens, are urged to stay off the areas of PB with only Class III (signed bike route, no lanes).  Some parts of 17-Mile Drive have no real shoulder, or only a very narrow shoulder. Such stretches include from Cypress Point to the Lodge to Huckleberry, and these are not good routes for inexperienced people biking.

Although there is not a Class I (off-road) bike path through Pebble Beach, less experienced people may still be comfortable biking just part of 17-Mile Drive, where there are Class II (shared with cars) bike lanes.

Example:  Bike from the Pacific Grove gate to Point Joe or Spanish Bay.  Here’s how to get from the Monterey Aquarium to Point Joe.

  • One of the many virtually flat rides with beautiful ocean views goes from the Monterey Bay Aquarium, Monterey to Point Joe, Pebble Beach. There’s a brief, very gentle uphill stretch after Asilomar State Beach. (1) Start at the Aquarium and bike to Lovers Point (this stretch is all off-road bike path, and it even has separate lanes for people who walk and people who bike).  (2) Then, from Lovers Point to Asilomar Avenue, you share the road with cars, and this is a signed bike route only (there is no marked bike lane).  (3) After Asilomar Avenue,  a bike lane is re-established (still shares the road with cars); the bike lane continues into Pebble Beach, to Point Joe and beyond.
  • Note: It’s easy to locate the Pacific Grove gate into Pebble Beach:  It’s a right-hand turn at the stop sign after you’ve passed Asilomar State Beach, the Fishwife Restaurant, and the Russell Service Center, which features a retail shop for Peninsula Potters.Once you reach the Pebble Beach entrance gate, follow signs to Point Joe.

Less experienced people can still get in plenty of miles of pedaling elsewhere, such as Monterey County’s coastal trail, with many miles of Class I infrastructure.  Refer to  “Where to Bike” or to the bicycle maps section.

A visitor’s summary

If you’ve browsed  “Where to Bike” in this site’s 20-section guide, Tips for Bicycling Monterey County, you may have already found this report by Jody Brooks:  “Cycling Monterey to Carmel and Back,” which includes comments on biking 17-Mile Drive Pebble Beach.

Distracted by beauty? Safety first.

Above: “Doc” Reichbaum catching the waves along 17-Mile Drive.  (Photo courtesy of Rizayel Mukashev.)

Please be safe, and legal–whether traveling on two wheels or more.  Beautiful views can be distracting; see “Distracted? Stay alert–cops about!”

Also see this site’s section on riding skills, laws, and safety tips.

If you’re unfamiliar with the no-bike-lane stretches of 17-Mile Drive and are intent on biking them, talk with locals who bike the entire 17-Mile Drive regularly, such as local bike shop staff and local bike club leaders.

And bike as early in the morning as possible, when there are fewer cars on the road.

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Biking Pebble Beach is a special way to experience a beautiful stretch of Monterey County coastline.  Bring your bicycle, or rent one from a Monterey County rental location.

Winter riding
Coming during the winter months, and figure it’s not going to be biking weather?  See “Piping in the New.”

Bike-and-ride to Pebble

If you’d like to bicycle in Pebble Beach but your schedule, stamina, or other reasons make it challenging, refer to this site’s bike-and-ride tips.  From hotel shuttles to bike racks on cars to Monterey-Salinas Transit (MST) bus service, there are solutions to help more people bicycle.

Monterey-Salinas Transit (MST) normally has bus service to Pebble Beach 7 days a week, with bike racks on those buses.  See MST.org for updates. Service hours are tailored to employees working in Pebble Beach (“commuter bus”), so plan for that and review the MST schedule to find the times that work best for you.  Ask MST about the 2x Pebble Beach Express or other scheduled trips.

Strenuous rides and elegant evenings

Maybe you are not staying overnight on the Monterey Peninsula, and you want to get a good workout on a strenuous bike ride, then follow it up with an evening out.   Can you easily do both?  Sure; refer to shower and change locations for day visitors. And if you are lodging here overnight, look for “How Monterey County’s Accommodations Show It’s a Bicycling Friendly Place.

If you’re enthused about combining bicycling in Pebble Beach with a touch of elegance, and the amenities that typically accompany a special date, we’ve got you covered; refer to “Bike Valet Parking” and be inspired too by Bicycling Monterey’s Bike Date in Monterey County videoAnd if you think you can’t dress in style for bicycling, see “Cycling chic a la Monterey.”

Hey, open road—let’s race!

Racers are encouraged by Pebble Beach Company to enjoy high-speed cycling  at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca, Fort Ord, and other Monterey County locations suited to racing. Racing is not appropriate for 17-Mile Drive.

See Serious Cyclists section of the Tips guide to connect with racers and good racing locations.  Also see section 10,  “Where to Bike.”

Find recreational ride companions for 17-Mile Drive

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Find useful information on the Bicycling Monterey  website?  Make a contribution.

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Restricted dates:

special event weeks

Special events such as the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am and the Concours d’Elegance usually make it necessary for Pebble Beach Company to temporarily exclude bicycling, due to safety concerns.

At other special events—because of  heavy motor vehicle traffic—cycling may be discouraged, even though allowed. A high volume of traffic does not make for a fun cycling experience!

For all special events, Pebble Beach Company—event by event—decides their policy on bicycles. How to know what the decision is for a particular event? Often restricted dates will be noted on Bicycling Monterey’s master calendar. Or feel free to phone me to inquire. If you can’t reach me, call Pebble Beach Company—and ask for Safety Director Carlos Fraga to inquire. Also, you will normally see signs up at Pebble Beach at those exceptional times, such as during the AT&T Pro-Am, if bikes are not allowed.

You may see a small number of bicycles at the “bikes excluded” special events:  some members of the the Pebble Beach cycling medical team find bicycles the best way to reach people in need quickly. Other times (e.g., AT&T Pro-Am 2014 and 2015), emergency teams travel in golf carts rather than by bicycle.


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See “Piping in the New” to join me on a winter bike ride on 17-Mile Drive. Below are some scenes from other special times for me in Pebble Beach. Come make your own memories soon!

Spanish Bay was just the place for Mom and Daughter to celebrate the 16th Birthday!

Below, the sweet 16 gal and her pal share the tough job of tackling dessert at Roy’s.

Ecotourism and Pebble Beach

Being in a place where nature’s beauty is stunning causes most people to feel gratitude, along with a desire to help preserve that beauty.

You may have noticed that Pebble Beach dining venues are serving more sustainable seafood and organically grown produce on some of their menus, which is wonderful.  For examples, check out the Stillwater menu, and this article about Peppoli.

What else is Pebble Beach Company doing to sustain this beautiful environment for future generations?  Check out their website’s Environmental Stewardship page to learn about conservation efforts affecting marine life, plant life, water, and more.

It’s significant that many of the Pebble Beach Company’s individual venues earned designation as certified Monterey Bay Area Green Businesses in 2009.  You may read the list in the Pebble Beach Company July 15, 2009 press release at their site; and you may also confirm that good news, and learn more, by visiting the Monterey Bay Area Green Business website.  What about the golf courses?  Pebble Beach Golf Links was cited by Links Magazine as one of the “Top 10 Green Courses.”

Looking for a way to combine your love for biking and golfing? Check out the Golf Bike. See “The Golf Bike: An alternative to walking and carts” by John Strege in the 1/24/13 issue of Golf Digest.

Also refer to the Company’s website regarding their 2009 WRAP award from California Integrated Waste Management Board—received for the 10th year. For these efforts to be most effective, though, requires a commitment from the rest of us. Here’s an easy example.  Please use the recycling bins at special events.  And if you’re a volunteer or employee (permanent and temporary alike), stick to the Company’s guidelines regarding where those recyclables go next.  Effective results require a team effort.

Crank it up a notch

Better yet, whenever possible, avoid those mountains of discarded plastic and paper altogether!

You may purchase reusable mugs with the Pebble Beach logo at the Pebble Beach store and Lone Cypress reusable bags at Pebble Beach so you are able to say “No paper or plastic, thank you!  I have my own.”

Bring your own cloth hankies, napkins, and so on, too.  It all adds up!

Here, there, everywhere

If you live in an area where eco-awareness and actions are commonplace, count your blessings.  And if you are an individual who has been mindful about caring for the planet for decades (or virtually all your life), a tip of the bike helmet to you!

It’s easy to forget that not everywhere is environmental sustainability highly prized.  The eco-steps that Pebble Beach Company and others are already taking are vital.  And on this dear Planet Earth—here, there, and everywhere—there’s still a long way to go to set things right.

There are many ways you can help keep Pebble Beach and Monterey County beautiful.  Leaving a motor vehicle behind to travel by bicycle, even part of the time (see bike-and-ride tips) may be your favorite way.  For more ideas, please refer to the “Bicycling and Ecotourism” section of Tips for Bicycling Monterey County, and “Bike to the Beach–and Care for What You Love.

Getting out to enjoy nature is perhaps the best inspiration for safeguarding it.  It would be fun to hear what you learned about this beautiful planet—and perhaps a new action that has inspired in you—from your bicycle trip around Pebble Beach, other parts of  Monterey County, or wherever you are.

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Archived notes from  some past special event weeks
Pebble Beach Food & Wine

Pebble Beach Food & Wine is one of the many special events that draws people to Pebble Beach–as if the beautiful coastline were not enough.

  • Look for Heller Organic Estate Vineyards, and ask winemaker Rich Tanguay about biking in beautiful Carmel Valley.
  • Check in with James Lopez, valet for Roy’s and the Inn at  Spanish Bay, for more tips.  James bikes frequently, and he is experienced with biking Pebble Beach and many other places in Monterey County.

Be sure to ask for bike valet parking at Spanish Bay and throughout the county.

Chefs

Keep a special eye out for the extra earth-friendly chefs who are conscious about Sustainable Seafood, humanely raised meats, and local and organically grown  ingredients like those found at our farmers markets.  Here are three chefs with a particular sustainability consciousness:

More tips:  Tips for Bicycling Monterey County 20-section guide.

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Concours d’Elegance and Monterey Auto Week 2011

Bicycling Beauties:  Think 2011 Monterey Auto Week, including the Concours d’Elegance is only about four wheels?

Concorso Italiano will be showing off other Italian beauties, too,  on August 19!  Check out the Classic Italian Bicycles at Concorso, where you’ll have the opportunity to be swept off your feet by about 18 gorgeous Italians from the 1950s, 60s, 70s, and more, including carbon fibre lovelies from the present.

Think you’ve already seen the best Campy ever?  Come to the Concorso Italiano and be sure, for this is the place to see lots of amazing Campagnolos.  This Auto Week event takes place at Laguna Seca Golf Ranch.

McCall Motorworks Revival.  Naval Postgraduate School Cycling Club members will be on hand for Gordon McCall’s very special event, August 17, 2011, kicking off Auto Week.  The Motorworks Revival benefits the California Highway Patrol’s 11-99 Foundation.

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February 9-15, 2015, during the AT&T National Pro-Am Golf Tournament, Pebble Beach is closed to bicycles and to visitors driving motor vehicles.

Tips for golf-lovers and others

A bike is a great way to get around other parts of Monterey County during high-traffic Pro-Am week, and to find parking–including bike valet service.

Make use of the bike-there tips in HER Helmet Thursdays listings, along with other resources in the Tips for Bicycling Monterey County guide and elsewhere on this site.  Contact me with any questions.

Thursday of AT&T Pro-Am week is a restricted date at most HER Helmet Thursdays locations.  Phone ahead to inquire, as some participants waive the date restriction.

Follow the Pebble Beach golf action on Twitter @ATTPBNProAm and @KevinMerfield (Monterey Herald golf columnist). Visit Monterey County Convention & Visitors Bureau webpage Insider’s Guide to the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am for tips.

Weather? On Twitter @nwsbayarea.

Monterey County bike scene @bikemonterey and @HERHelmetThurs.

Review California bike laws and safety tips. No matter your mode of travel, stay alert for cops on bikes, because they’ll be alert for distracted people driving or biking who compromise the safety of others on the roads.  Biking and drinking? See “safe biking and alcohol” tips in Wine-ding your way along Monterey County bikeways.

Are you a golf widow/widower? Go shopping-by-bike! Want a change from crowded restaurants? Bike to a farmers market. Need a quiet place to pray about Sunday’s outcome? Bike to worship.

Note: Special thanks to Clark of Salinas for encouraging this post’s greater emphasis on those no-bike-lane stretches.

  1. Regis says:

    Lovely May 5th bicycling 17 Mile Drive.

  2. Brian Mask says:

    Thanks. Very informative. I expect biking scenic beauty on this route.

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