Advertise on Bikeforums.net



User Tag List

Results 1 to 21 of 21
  1. #1
    Every day a winding road spinnaker's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Pittsburgh, PA
    My Bikes
    2005 Cannondale SR500, 2008 Trek 7.3 FX, Jamis Aurora
    Posts
    4,377
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    Columbia River Gorge: How long on the interstate?

    I am thinking of touring the Columbia River Gorge this year. My plan would be to cycle down the Oregon side and come back on the Washington side. One concern is the interstate.

    I am having a difficult time figuring out how many miles I would have to do on the interstate due to the changing situation with the old highway.

    Can anyone give me an idea on how many miles I would need to do on the interstate?
    "The world is a dangerous place to live, not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don't do anything about it."

    Albert Einstein

  2. #2
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    NW,Oregon Coast
    My Bikes
    7
    Posts
    3,207
    Mentioned
    47 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Here:http://www.oregon.gov/ODOT/HWY/BIKEP...rgebikemap.pdf


    It is also very popular for Wind Surfing right there , you should be Informed..
    Last edited by fietsbob; 01-05-14 at 09:00 PM.

  3. #3
    Sore saddle cyclist Shifty's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Eugene, OR
    My Bikes
    Road, touring and mountain
    Posts
    3,785
    Mentioned
    1 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I'd be more concerned about the Washington side, the highway is very busy with car and truck traffic. Many people ride it, but it's not pleasant.
    Those voices in your head aren't real, but they have some great ideas

  4. #4
    Senior Member Doug64's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Oregon
    Posts
    2,671
    Mentioned
    4 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by Shifty View Post
    I'd be more concerned about the Washington side, the highway is very busy with car and truck traffic. Many people ride it, but it's not pleasant.
    +1

    I-84 is a pretty safe place to ride. It can be busy, but it has wide shoulders. I have ridden it several times from The Dalles to Portland rather than taking the scenic route.
    Last edited by Doug64; 12-31-13 at 12:20 PM.

  5. #5
    Every day a winding road spinnaker's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Pittsburgh, PA
    My Bikes
    2005 Cannondale SR500, 2008 Trek 7.3 FX, Jamis Aurora
    Posts
    4,377
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
    Reading impaired? Read my post again. I have seen that PDF but things are changing from what I have read.
    Last edited by spinnaker; 12-31-13 at 12:19 PM.
    "The world is a dangerous place to live, not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don't do anything about it."

    Albert Einstein

  6. #6
    Every day a winding road spinnaker's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Pittsburgh, PA
    My Bikes
    2005 Cannondale SR500, 2008 Trek 7.3 FX, Jamis Aurora
    Posts
    4,377
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by Shifty View Post
    I'd be more concerned about the Washington side, the highway is very busy with car and truck traffic. Many people ride it, but it's not pleasant.
    So with the interstate in Oregon and the busy highway on the Washington side, it is sounding to me like this is not exactly a tranquil ride?
    "The world is a dangerous place to live, not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don't do anything about it."

    Albert Einstein

  7. #7
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    NW,Oregon Coast
    My Bikes
    7
    Posts
    3,207
    Mentioned
    47 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Miles of the various sections are on there

    you might go to http://btaoregon.org/

    and inquire at the various towns along the way
    web sites for tourist and commerce are common these days


    and there is http://bikeportland.org/

    The Columbia River Scenic Highway is Not, unfortunately, the whole way along the riverbank.
    its actually up the hillside of the river valley . Lots of WPA work done there.
    Last edited by fietsbob; 12-31-13 at 12:27 PM.

  8. #8
    Every day a winding road spinnaker's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Pittsburgh, PA
    My Bikes
    2005 Cannondale SR500, 2008 Trek 7.3 FX, Jamis Aurora
    Posts
    4,377
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by Doug64 View Post
    +1

    I-84 is a pretty safe place to ride. It can be busy, but it has wide shoulders. I have ridden it several times from The Dalles to Portland rather than taking the scenic route.
    I am not worried about being safe on the interstate. I have ridden them before and the shoulders are plenty wide. I feel safer there than many regular roads I have ridden. I am more concerned about noise and it being a pleasant and scenic ride most of the way.
    "The world is a dangerous place to live, not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don't do anything about it."

    Albert Einstein

  9. #9
    Senior Member Doug64's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Oregon
    Posts
    2,671
    Mentioned
    4 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    You might check http://rideoregonride.com/

    Depending on how far east you are riding from PDX, there should not be a lot of interstate on the Oregon side. It has been awhile since I've ridden on the old highway, and I know they have opened more of it since then. I believe the above link will give yo a pretty good idea.

    Highway 14 on the Washington side has a good shoulder, and is OK. I-84 and Hwy 14 are the only roads through the Gorge so all east/west traffic funnels through them. I think you will find the ride will be beautiful and scenic, but parts of the route will not be tranquil. I believe that you have done parts of the Pacific Coast. The traffic conditions feel much the same on Hwy 14 as the Coast Route.

    IMO it is worth doing.

    P.S.
    If you plan on getting off the the highway on the north side of the river for lunch or bathroom stops, find out what poison oak looks like.
    Last edited by Doug64; 01-03-14 at 08:07 PM.

  10. #10
    Licensed Bike Geek Davet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Location
    Los Barriles, Baja Sur, Mexico
    My Bikes
    Kirk Terraplane, Serotta Ottrott, Spectrum Super Custom, Hampsten Carbon Leger Tournesol
    Posts
    950
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Bruce, neither side of the Columbia will be 'tranquil' while you're on the main road/highway. Both though are beautiful and scenic. The Washington side becomes more quiet the further east you are and more crowded the closer you get to Portland.

    I've not ridden on either road but have driven both many times and always do a 'note to self' to do a ride there.

    One thing you may consider, depending on the amount of time you have would be to go out the Gorge from Portland, cross the river at Biggs, ride the Washington side to Hwy 221 then up through Horse Heaven Hill and into Prosser, the heart of Washington's wine country. Spend a day or three riding the backroads btween Benton City and Zillah, visiting wineries and breweries. Lotsa places to stay/eat/see. Then back over Hwy 97 and back down to the river and into the Portland area.

    If I can do anything for you, let me know.

    Dave Thompson

  11. #11
    Every day a winding road spinnaker's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Pittsburgh, PA
    My Bikes
    2005 Cannondale SR500, 2008 Trek 7.3 FX, Jamis Aurora
    Posts
    4,377
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by Doug64 View Post
    You might check http://rideoregonride.com/

    Depending on how far east you are riding from PDX, there should not be a lot of interstate on the Oregon side. It has been awhile since I've ridden on the old highway, and I know they have opened more of it since then. I believe the above link will give yo a pretty good idea.

    Highway 14 on the Washington side has a good shoulder, and is OK. I-84 and Hwy 14 are the only roads through the Gorge so all east/west traffic funnels through them. I think you will find the ride will be beautiful and scenic, but parts of the route will not be tranquil. I believe that you have done parts of the Pacific Coast. The traffic conditions feel much the same on Hwy 14 as the Coast Route.

    IMO it is worth doing.

    P.S.
    If you plan on getting of the the highway on the north side of the river for lunch or bathroom stops, become find out what poison oak looks like.
    What makes me think the poison oak comment came from experience?


    Thanks your comments are making me feel a little better about this choice for 2014.
    "The world is a dangerous place to live, not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don't do anything about it."

    Albert Einstein

  12. #12
    Every day a winding road spinnaker's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Pittsburgh, PA
    My Bikes
    2005 Cannondale SR500, 2008 Trek 7.3 FX, Jamis Aurora
    Posts
    4,377
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by Davet View Post
    Bruce, neither side of the Columbia will be 'tranquil' while you're on the main road/highway. Both though are beautiful and scenic. The Washington side becomes more quiet the further east you are and more crowded the closer you get to Portland.

    I've not ridden on either road but have driven both many times and always do a 'note to self' to do a ride there.

    One thing you may consider, depending on the amount of time you have would be to go out the Gorge from Portland, cross the river at Biggs, ride the Washington side to Hwy 221 then up through Horse Heaven Hill and into Prosser, the heart of Washington's wine country. Spend a day or three riding the backroads btween Benton City and Zillah, visiting wineries and breweries. Lotsa places to stay/eat/see. Then back over Hwy 97 and back down to the river and into the Portland area.

    If I can do anything for you, let me know.

    Dave Thompson

    Thanks Dave. You are always so helpul . You need to get out this way and ride the GAP/C&O to DC.
    "The world is a dangerous place to live, not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don't do anything about it."

    Albert Einstein

  13. #13
    Licensed Bike Geek Davet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Location
    Los Barriles, Baja Sur, Mexico
    My Bikes
    Kirk Terraplane, Serotta Ottrott, Spectrum Super Custom, Hampsten Carbon Leger Tournesol
    Posts
    950
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by spinnaker View Post
    Thanks Dave. You are always so helpul . You need to get out this way and ride the GAP/C&O to DC.
    I'm working on it. My wife retires this Friday. We already bought the motorhome. After she completes her transcontinental ride next year, (July 2014) I'll probably pull the pin too. We're talking about spending 3~4 winter months in Mexico then seeing/riding the U.S. during the rest of the year.

  14. #14
    Sore saddle cyclist Shifty's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Eugene, OR
    My Bikes
    Road, touring and mountain
    Posts
    3,785
    Mentioned
    1 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    This map from Oregon Parks shows the best bike route from Troutdale on the west end of the gorge to The Dalles. As to your original post, it shows one section of riding on the interstate shoulder, but mostly you'll ride on the old scenic road.

    Another thought I had since you mentioned riding the gorge both ways was wind. The winds in the gorge are strong. Riding both directions means that you'll likely have a tailwind one way and fierce headwind the other. Winds can be from the west, or from the east and really strong. Be prepared for this.

    This map is in sections, so scroll down to see each section http://www.oregonstateparks.org/ckFi...H_BikeMaps.pdf
    Those voices in your head aren't real, but they have some great ideas

  15. #15
    Senior Member BigBlueToe's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Central Coast, CA
    My Bikes
    Surly LHT, Specialized Rockhopper, Nashbar Touring (old), Specialized Stumpjumper (older), Nishiki Tourer (model unknown)
    Posts
    3,388
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I rode the ACA Lewis and Clark route from Portland to Missoula a few years ago. I took the Oregon side as far as I could, then rode across the bridge at Biggs and continued east on 14 on the Washington side.

    I spent quite a bit of time on I-84. Most of the time it was "fine" (I can't think of a more descriptive word.) The shoulder is very wide and relatively smooth. Hills are climbed with relatively easy grades. The biggest downside was the noise - it's a busy freeway with lots of semi trucks.

    There was one place where I was supposed to get off the freeway and I didn't (due to some glitches with the gps I was following.) It's the famous section where cyclists go up and over and there are wheel grooves in the cement next to the steps. I missed it and ended up riding through a freeway tunnel with no shoulder. It was scary and loud but I made it through. I guess it wasn't any worse than some of the other scary places I've ridden on tours - the bridge across the Columbia into Astoria, the highway into Whitefish (where I missed another turnoff,) the tunnels on the Oregon coast - there was another scary spot just ahead of this one - the bridge across the Columbia from Biggs into Maryhill.

    There were a couple other places where I had to circle to find the correct route on and off the freeway. ACA tries to get you off busy roads whenever it can, and sometimes it might be easier to just stay on the main road, rather than wandering around looking for the route (which often adds a few miles.) Don't get me wrong; usually I appreciate the bucolic roads that ACA chooses, and am pleased enough that I don't mind the few extra miles they might add.

    Anyway, I recommend the ACA route maps, and I recommend using them to navigate while riding, rather than just relying on a gps.
    Last edited by BigBlueToe; 01-01-14 at 10:41 AM.

  16. #16
    Every day a winding road spinnaker's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Pittsburgh, PA
    My Bikes
    2005 Cannondale SR500, 2008 Trek 7.3 FX, Jamis Aurora
    Posts
    4,377
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by Shifty View Post
    This map from Oregon Parks shows the best bike route from Troutdale on the west end of the gorge to The Dalles. As to your original post, it shows one section of riding on the interstate shoulder, but mostly you'll ride on the old scenic road.

    Another thought I had since you mentioned riding the gorge both ways was wind. The winds in the gorge are strong. Riding both directions means that you'll likely have a tailwind one way and fierce headwind the other. Winds can be from the west, or from the east and really strong. Be prepared for this.

    This map is in sections, so scroll down to see each section http://www.oregonstateparks.org/ckFi...H_BikeMaps.pdf
    Yes thanks for the warning on the winds. I was already aware. I was already planning on keeping days fairly short. I was not aware that it was so unpredictable so thanks for that. I was hoping the prevailing wind was one direction or the other. Ot would make planning so much easier.
    "The world is a dangerous place to live, not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don't do anything about it."

    Albert Einstein

  17. #17
    Licensed Bike Geek Davet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Location
    Los Barriles, Baja Sur, Mexico
    My Bikes
    Kirk Terraplane, Serotta Ottrott, Spectrum Super Custom, Hampsten Carbon Leger Tournesol
    Posts
    950
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Bruce, here's a site that gives lots of info regarding winds at Hood River, a very popular windsurfing area on the Columbia. http://www.windfinder.com/windstats/...hood_river.htm

  18. #18
    Banned
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Location
    none
    My Bikes
    '78 Raleigh rebuilt to 21C...Redline Monocog cyclocross in steel redone to 8 spped trekker
    Posts
    101
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    https://www.google.com/search?q=colu...w=1280&bih=566

    Road out to Condon and Service Creek from Biggs corner is outstanding. The Deschutes Rec Area is a bike trail worth riding.

    Washington’s side is rideable. The twisty sections are sports car country. Nearing Portland the road may be more party goers than serious drivers.

    The northside drive with a sports vehicle is outstanding river side driving esp in the fall when the Alder turn yellow.

  19. #19
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    Boise, Idaho USA
    My Bikes
    Seven Axiom & Muse, Croll Track, LeMond Poprad, Dahon Cadenza P8
    Posts
    11
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    hey.. i just did this in september east to west (see here http://trackmytour.com/tZzSC). i took 84 (from boise) to hermiston and stayed entirely on the washington side (tho crossing over for overnights) until I-205 near portland. september may be a bit late in the year but it was fine on the washington side w/ not too much traffic. there is a section right out of hermiston that's 83 miles between services (tho towards the end there is a convenience store that may be open). the washington side is certainly more scenic but quite a bit hillier (if you're not used to climbing you may look longingly at 84's nice flat grade). i've certainly ridden on significantly worse roads than highway 14 -- i didn't think anything of it, actually. nice ride.

  20. #20
    Senior Member Medic Zero's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Seattle
    My Bikes
    Old steel GT's, for touring and commuting
    Posts
    2,026
    Mentioned
    1 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    .

    I think this info is pertinent to this discussion:

    http://seattletimes.com/html/outdoor...tdoorsxml.html

    A new treat for cyclists in Columbia River Gorge

    By November, bikers can tour 34 miles of scenic gorge without riding on freeway, thanks to new trail link.

    By TERRY RICHARD
    The Oregonian

    CASCADE LOCKS, Ore. — Cyclists will soon have a new recreation option after a missing link in the Historic Columbia River Highway State Trail opens west of Cascade Locks, in the Columbia River Gorge. The section will be fully usable after Oct. 31.

    Scot Sullenger, who owns the Cascade Motel in Cascade Locks, thinks it could be a perfect weekend bike ride. In fact, he plans to do it in reverse himself.

    This is how it will work. For the first time since the construction of Interstate 84 in the 1960s, there will be an alternative route between Troutdale, Ore. — just east of Portland — and Cascade Locks without the need for using any part of the freeway.

    The old scenic Columbia River Highway, which was fully open by 1922, was partially destroyed or abandoned as I-84 was built. The new 1.6-mile McCord Creek trail link replaces one of the lost sections.

    The $8.1 million project has brought a bicycle/pedestrian path to the previously missing section: between John B. Yeon State Scenic Corridor on the west and the Bonneville Dam freeway exit to the east.

    Sullenger plans to ride his bike with his wife from Cascade Locks to Troutdale, spend one night at McMenamins Edgefield resort in Troutdale, then ride back to Cascade Locks the next day.

    The distance is 34 miles, with a climb over 733-foot high Crown Point. Cyclists will need to share part of the old highway with vehicles (an average 2,200 per day), but won’t need to ride on I-84 where 21,000 are counted daily.

    In addition to the Cascade Motel, other lodging opportunities in Cascade Locks include the Best Western Columbia River Inn, Bridge of the Gods Motel and Columbia Gorge Inn.

    A Sept. 14 dedication celebrated the new trail section, which was open to the public that weekend but will remain closed for general use until Oct. 31. Meanwhile, workers will be paving, finishing walls, landscaping and installing the safety railing along I-84.

    The project will open the final link in a scenic bike ride from Troutdale to Cascade Locks on 26 miles of the Columbia River Historic Highway and 6.5 miles of shared-use path on the State Trail. Ultimately, the trail will extend to Hood River, Ore., although the design and funding sources are still under study for construction of the trail in the Mitchell Point area.

    The new 1.6-mile trail segment includes:

    • A new 12-foot wide paved path accessible to pedestrians, bicyclists, walkers, hikers and wheelchairs.

    • A distinctive new 76-foot long pedestrian bridge over McCord Creek designed to reflect the artistry and craftsmanship of the original highway design.

    • A new picnic and rest area with restored views of Beacon Rock.

    • A link with U.S. Forest Service Trail 400 connecting to Elowah Falls.

    • Another ADA accessible section of the trail.

    In 1987, the Oregon Legislature set in motion the restoration of the Historic Columbia River Highway, America’s first scenic highway. By the 1950s, many sections of the road had been abandoned or demolished for what eventually became Interstate 84.
    Everyone hates your lights. Throw them away & buy something civilized.

  21. #21
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    Perkins, Oklahoma
    My Bikes
    A few
    Posts
    214
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I rode this section at the tail end of a cross country a few years ago. Perhaps I was just tired but the Oregon side confused the hell out of me in a couple of places. I was surprised by the lack of signage for westbound cyclists, especially directions for the historic section. Someone already commented on it but the noise was a major issue for me after a couple months in wide opens spaces. Were I to ride it again, ear plugs would be a part of the plan! Don't miss the awesome little park at Roosevelt-it doesn't show up on some of the maps. Looks like the new trail Medic talks about might help a lot.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •