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  1. #1
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    Cylcing Willamette Valley Summer 2014

    My husband and I would like to cycle along the trail that runs through Willamette Valley this summer. We will bring our own road bikes and stay in one location for about a week (so no camping along the way). I am looking for recommendations on where along the trail to park ourselves. It would be nice to be somewhere where there is a bike shop in case we need repairs or something like that. We usually like to ride about 50 miles per ride. My husband will fly fish also. Hopefully I have provided enough information. Thanks. We have taken some great cycling vacations based on advice from people on this forum.
    Last edited by shona; 04-08-14 at 01:24 PM. Reason: want to add instant notification for responses

  2. #2
    L-I-V-I-N dtrain's Avatar
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    Lots of options - depends on your other interests. Portland is fun and unique (culture, dining, etc.), but quite a distance from the Valley. Maybe Newberg (close to great wineries) or Wilsonville for easy access to the trail at Champoeg Park? Salem is a solid option around the mid-point of the trail, but not quite as attractive. Eugene might make the most sense for fly fishing.
    "The older you do get, the more rules they're gonna try to get you to follow. You just gotta keep livin', man, L-I-V-I-N." - Wooderson

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  3. #3
    Sore saddle cyclist Shifty's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dtrain View Post
    Lots of options - depends on your other interests. Portland is fun and unique (culture, dining, etc.), but quite a distance from the Valley. Maybe Newberg (close to great wineries) or Wilsonville for easy access to the trail at Champoeg Park? Salem is a solid option around the mid-point of the trail, but not quite as attractive. Eugene might make the most sense for fly fishing.
    Eugene would actually make the most sense for cycling too. There are so many 50 mile rides out of Eugene that are MUCH better than the Willamette Valley Bike Route. Also great lodging, food, wineries, micro breweries, music, and did I mention great riding. Several good bike shops. I will even throw in free consultation on area rides, such a deal!! ;-) Fly fishing? We have the McKenzie River, about as good as it gets.
    Those voices in your head aren't real, but they have some great ideas

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    L-I-V-I-N dtrain's Avatar
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    I haven't done the WV route south of Salem, but I'd imagine it's a little dull/flat. Maybe one day there (Champoeg to Salem?) and branch out to see more of the state. What about a day on the Historic Highway in the Gorge, a quick trip to the coast, a spin around Sisters, a wine country ride with some rolling hills? Then again, maybe that's way too much time in a car getting to rides.
    Last edited by dtrain; 04-08-14 at 04:38 PM.
    "The older you do get, the more rules they're gonna try to get you to follow. You just gotta keep livin', man, L-I-V-I-N." - Wooderson

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    Eugene

    Quote Originally Posted by Shifty View Post
    Eugene would actually make the most sense for cycling too. There are so many 50 mile rides out of Eugene that are MUCH better than the Willamette Valley Bike Route. Also great lodging, food, wineries, micro breweries, music, and did I mention great riding. Several good bike shops. I will even throw in free consultation on area rides, such a deal!! ;-) Fly fishing? We have the McKenzie River, about as good as it gets.
    Eugene is sounding good. We don't care about wineries but it would be nice to have restaurants and bike shops coupled with great writing. Is there a particular area of Eugene where we can stay that will be close to good riding routes? It would be great if we don't have to put our bikes in the Rent-A-Car to go someplace to ride.

  6. #6
    Sore saddle cyclist Shifty's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by shona View Post
    Eugene is sounding good. We don't care about wineries but it would be nice to have restaurants and bike shops coupled with great writing. Is there a particular area of Eugene where we can stay that will be close to good riding routes? It would be great if we don't have to put our bikes in the Rent-A-Car to go someplace to ride.
    Our bike trail system goes through downtown, you can ride your bike from any hotel/motel and be out of town in the country in 7 - 9 miles, in any direction. Park your car and ride or walk the whole time you are here. All of the lodging with photos at the top of this link are on, or within a 1/4 mile of a bike path. https://www.google.com/search?q=lodg...m=122&ie=UTF-8
    Last edited by Shifty; 04-08-14 at 09:42 PM.
    Those voices in your head aren't real, but they have some great ideas

  7. #7
    Senior Member adventurepdx's Avatar
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    It's been a few years since I've ridden the entirety of the Willamette Valley Scenic Bikeway. It's not bad, but like dtrain posited, it is a bit dull/flat. A week would be a lot of time to do it, as it's about a two day ride one-way. And to note: it's not a bike "trail" per se, but a bike route. There are a few small sections on separated paths, but most of it is road riding.

    Eugene would be a good spot to stay so you can do some other riding. If you stayed closer to Portland you can add riding around the wine country in Yamhill County (still nice riding even if you don't care about wine), or ride out to the Columbia River Gorge.
    http://urbanadventureleague.blogspot.com/ http://societyofthreespeeds.wordpress.com/ http://www.flickr.com/photos/urbanadventureleaguepdx/

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    L-I-V-I-N dtrain's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by adventurepdx View Post
    ...or ride out to the Columbia River Gorge.
    I give this a strong +1 as a day trip. A favorite ride that my wife and I do together is Hood River to Rowena Crest on the old highway (out and back). Just a totally different scene and very, very cool. Worth the drive (and worth a stop at Mult. Falls/Crown Point).
    "The older you do get, the more rules they're gonna try to get you to follow. You just gotta keep livin', man, L-I-V-I-N." - Wooderson

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    Senior Member mtnbud's Avatar
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    What they said - Eugene.

    Do you want to start each ride from your hotel, or are you willing to drive a little to access different rides? There are some real nice rides that are close to Eugene, but they'd be more than 50 miles round trip.
    “If You Open Your Mind Too Much Your Brain Will Fall Out”

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    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    Will, say the afternoon winds blow from the cooler Columbia river end to the warmer southern end,

    as the hotter air rises and the cooler replaces it .

  11. #11
    Sore saddle cyclist Shifty's Avatar
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    This scenic bikeway is located 25 miles south of Eugene starting in Cottage Grove, OR. I ride this a few times a year, and the ride can be extended on low traffic (very low) paved roads to make it as long a ride as you'd like. There are several great swimming holes along the way too, very nice on a warm day.
    Covered Bridges Scenic Bikeway - Ride Oregon Ride
    Those voices in your head aren't real, but they have some great ideas

  12. #12
    Insane Bicycle Mechanic Jeff Wills's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by shona View Post
    My husband and I would like to cycle along the trail that runs through Willamette Valley this summer. We will bring our own road bikes and stay in one location for about a week (so no camping along the way). I am looking for recommendations on where along the trail to park ourselves. It would be nice to be somewhere where there is a bike shop in case we need repairs or something like that. We usually like to ride about 50 miles per ride. My husband will fly fish also. Hopefully I have provided enough information. Thanks. We have taken some great cycling vacations based on advice from people on this forum.

    Given those restrictions, I would find someplace around Salem. From there it's an easy ride to Champoeg State Park (check out the Monster Cookie Ride route), or along the Willamette southwards, or west to Dallas, or east to Silver Falls State Park.

    Can't give recommendations for fishing- I'm better with a shotgun than a fly rod, and I'm a lousy shot.
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  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by shona View Post
    It would be nice to be somewhere where there is a bike shop in case we need repairs or something like that. We usually like to ride about 50 miles per ride.
    Not all miles are created equally. Do you prefer flatland rides? Stick to Salem for that. We've got some gentle hills around Eugene, but our best stuff starts fifteen miles out of town and gets MUCH better at twice that distance. There's a couple of fantastic loops of just under sixty miles that start thirty miles west of town at Alma (near the junction of Siuslaw River Rd and the west end of Wolf Creek Rd west of Crow). These loops have a couple of watershed changes, so you'll do some climbing and there's no services whatsoever, including cell coverage, so you'll be on your own. However, the total lack of traffic makes up for the remoteness, at least for me. I've had rides out there where I have encountered more cougars, bobcats and bears (the cats run away, the bears run if you yell at them) than motorists. Much of these rides are like riding on a fifteen foot wide bike path along the river (Siuslaw River, Smith River, Esmonds Creek, Elk Creek, Buck Creek, West Fork Smith River). If that sounds like something you'd like, I'll give you maps.

    Needless to say, there's plenty of places to fish along those rivers/creeks. Not that the fish do anything but laugh at me, but I my friends who fish tell me they can be caught.
    Last edited by B. Carfree; 04-11-14 at 12:05 AM.

  14. #14
    Senior Member mtnbud's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by shona View Post
    Is there a particular area of Eugene where we can stay that will be close to good riding routes? It would be great if we don't have to put our bikes in the Rent-A-Car to go someplace to ride.
    Eugene has a real good public transportation system. If you want to avoid putting your bikes in the rental car, there's some bus routes that will get you closer to some good rides. There's even a bus route to Cottage Grove and McKenzie Bridge.
    “If You Open Your Mind Too Much Your Brain Will Fall Out”

  15. #15
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    If you stay in Eugene there is The Row River Trail in Cottage Grove Row River National Recreation Trail - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia . Neat paved rails to trail. Drive an hour to Westfir/Oakridge, and ride Forest Service Road 21 up the middle fork of the Willamette river ( fly fish and ride ) Or ride up the north fork of the Willamette ( Aufderheide Drive ). The Brewers Union Pub is set up as a English Pub.

  16. #16
    Senior Member toolbear's Avatar
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    If you stay in Eugene - which we often do - there is the delighful Ruth Bascom Riverbank Path System - paved trails on both sides of the river with five bridges that allow all sorts of criss-crossing. Another fine trail is the Row River out of Cottage Grove.

    Check out traillink.com

    <http://www.traillink.com/trail/ruth-bascom-riverbank-trail-system.aspx>

    <http://www.traillink.com/trail/row-river-trail.aspx>
    TrailBear

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