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Old 11-28-05, 06:43 PM   #1
humancongereel
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boise to portland or vice versa...

portland, oregon, that is. i'll be moving there in a month or two, and was wanting to either ride there, or to boise to visit family sometime warmer. anyone ever done anything like this? any ideas, suggestions, etc?
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Old 11-28-05, 07:59 PM   #2
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The ride either way is almost a straight shot if I remember correctly. Leaving Portland and take Highway 26 all the way there I think.
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Old 11-29-05, 01:28 AM   #3
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hmmm, okay. pretty much i was curious about, say, stops in between here and there...i've been that route in greyhounds and cars before, but didn't always have time to survey the surroundings fully...eateries, places to sleep, i think it'd be something of a 2 day trip.
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Old 11-29-05, 05:43 AM   #4
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I think the last half of this ride would be covered by the Adventure Cycling www.adventurecycling.org maps e.g. Lewis and Clark trail. I've never used these, but lots of folks don't go anywhere without them.

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Old 11-29-05, 10:11 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by humancongereel
hmmm, okay. pretty much i was curious about, say, stops in between here and there...i've been that route in greyhounds and cars before, but didn't always have time to survey the surroundings fully...eateries, places to sleep, i think it'd be something of a 2 day trip.
You're going to ride 215 miles a day! My hat is off to you, sir!

Actually it's about 430 miles to Portland from Boise if you go up to the Columbia. If you ride 70 miles per day that's at least 6 days. I don't know about the ride from Boise to Hermiston (I've only driven it, twice, this summer.) but from Hermiston to Portland is a great ride. I would suggest the Adventure Cycling maps refered to earlier they have lots of information on place to stay and places to get food. The only dodgy part would be from Hermiston to Biggs, OR. There is nothing on the north side of the river for food and water except at Roosevelt and that may be closed for the season. You could ride the southside of the Columbia but that's a lot of unpleasant interstate highway riding. From The Dalles to Portland is all along the Columbia River Scenic Highway and is one of the most spectacular rides I've ever done and that's saying a lot coming from a state that's just chock full of spectacular rides!


You might also look at the Transamerica maps since they follow US 26 and would have more information on that section. I can't help you there since I've not done the Tranam. I would suggest turning north at Redmond and going to The Dalles and then following the Columbia, however.
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Old 11-30-05, 10:41 PM   #6
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right, i guess i underestimated the distance. thanks for all the pointers...this'd be a magnificent ride to take...there are some beautiful areas there i've always wanted to see without being in the confines of a bus or car.

i'll check out these maps and everything, thanks a lot, guys.
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Old 12-01-05, 01:58 AM   #7
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Having driven the Gorge by car and motorcycle many times, I would think the ride along the Columbia, while beautiful, would get boring after awhile. Also remember the prevailing winds most of the year blow very hard down the Columbia from West to East so you would want to go that way. Rig up a spinnaker...

You might consider going part way down the Gorge, say from Portland to Biggs, then cutting down on one of the two lanes to pick up Hwy 26 at Mitchell, then following it out through John Day and over into Ontario, that is a pretty drive with great camping over the Dixie Summit in the Umatilla NF. Very pretty and scents of juniper and pinon pine. Or for that matter, consider taking 26 all the way from PDX, it's really a nice route.
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Old 12-01-05, 10:21 AM   #8
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Why the heck would you ride up the gorge instead of across to Bend and then over from there? After all, Boise is on the latitude of Eugene and going up the gorge would square off the route and add another 20% to the mileage.
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Old 12-01-05, 10:32 AM   #9
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Why the heck would you ride up the gorge instead of across to Bend and then over from there? After all, Boise is on the latitude of Eugene and going up the gorge would square off the route and add another 20% to the mileage.
When I looked at the map, going to Eugene and then to Portland would add more mileage. But is adding or subtracting mileage really the point? If you want to go in the quickest possible time, take a car. I suggested the Gorge because I rode there this summer and it was spectacular. The Columbia Highway is possibly the best ride I've ever done! Don't know about the other way but it'd have to be something to rival the Gorge.
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Old 12-05-05, 03:38 PM   #10
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Just make sure you're going east, especially if you do it in the spring/ summer. We get amazing winds up the gorge all season long which are great for windsurfing, and probably one hell of a tail wind provided you are heading the right direction. Doing recreational rides in Hood River all summer, I can't imagine the suckfest that a slog on a fully loaded tourer would be going into one of the famous gorge headwinds.
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Old 12-05-05, 07:24 PM   #11
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Just make sure you're going east, especially if you do it in the spring/ summer. We get amazing winds up the gorge all season long which are great for windsurfing, and probably one hell of a tail wind provided you are heading the right direction. Doing recreational rides in Hood River all summer, I can't imagine the suckfest that a slog on a fully loaded tourer would be going into one of the famous gorge headwinds.
My daughter and I had hellish head winds from Roosevelt to The Dalles in 100 F temps. We spent 3 days doing touristy things around The Dalles and then lucked out when the wind shifted and blew us done the Gorge to Rainier - 2 days that could have really been different Sometimes you eat the bear and some days the bear eats you.
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Old 01-02-06, 01:11 PM   #12
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I rode from Montana to Portland last summer along the Lewis & Clark route and can attest to the headwinds along the Columbia River! That was by far the worst part of the trip and I actually had to break down and hitch a ride from Roosevelt to the Dalles, as I was only making about 4-5mph of progress into the wind (on fairly level ground). It was like climbing all day long with no relief. If I stopped pedaling I came to an abrupt halt. The "Historic" Columbia River highway from the Dalles to Portland was a highlight of the trip, though.
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