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Willamette Valley Scenic Bikeway or Oregon Coast?

Old 08-26-17, 11:16 AM
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Whether you want to stay in or camp hotels, you'll want to plan ahead to make sure there's a place to stay at the end of the day. You shouldn't have too much trouble finding places to buy food and sleep, but you'll want to plan ahead.

I know of some places to camp and stay (as others probably do also) that may not necessarily show up on a web search so let us know once you sketch out an outline of your stops.

One unusual spot near the WV bikeway you may want to try for lunch is Rogue Farms south of Independence.
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Old 08-26-17, 12:14 PM
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Originally Posted by Doug64
I don't think you will have any problems with places for lunches or lodging.
Really can't find much on lodging. Unless Google is just coming up with them. For example Brownsville. I will be coming from Salem so Albany is too soon but Eugene is over the limit for me. Brownsville is about right because it sets me up for a nice easy 30 mile ride into Eugene with plenty of time to catch the 5PM train.

Google search of Brownsville lodging shows only 1 B&B. AirBNB shows a couple more but not finding anything in the way of traditional motels there.
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Old 08-26-17, 12:23 PM
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Originally Posted by mtnbud
Whether you want to stay in or camp hotels, you'll want to plan ahead to make sure there's a place to stay at the end of the day. You shouldn't have too much trouble finding places to buy food and sleep, but you'll want to plan ahead.

I know of some places to camp and stay (as others probably do also) that may not necessarily show up on a web search so let us know once you sketch out an outline of your stops.

One unusual spot near the WV bikeway you may want to try for lunch is Rogue Farms south of Independence.
Thanks. I have been touring a number of years now so I am well aware of making reservations ahead of time.

Independence seems to me a bit off the bikeway. Is a place to eat really worth a detour?
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Old 08-26-17, 12:51 PM
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the coast , because of the summer high has a prevailing wind favoring southward riding, and being on the right side of the road,
the sea is to your right.. to stop and look, that is the cycle touring preference.

When I lived in Eugene , the Grass (your lawn) seed growers sterilized their fields, after harvest, by burning , so it got smoky, in that city.

the temperature , cooler downstream than up, had the wind going the opposite way, behind the coast range.






...
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Old 08-26-17, 12:55 PM
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Originally Posted by fietsbob

the temperature , cooler downstream than up, had the wind going the opposite way, behind the coast range.



P.S. I have already done the coast once.



...
So the wind will be against me going south? I thought I read that the wind is usually out of the north during the summer in the valley.
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Old 08-26-17, 01:28 PM
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So start early, stop early , the air moves due to heat, cool replacing hot.
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Old 08-26-17, 01:32 PM
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And at least today the wind is out of the north.

National Weather Service
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Old 08-26-17, 01:34 PM
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Riding to the Rogue Farms is a 1 mile or two out of your way if you deviate from the bikeway by riding on the west side of the Willamette River. The west side actually a shorter distance if you skip the side trip to Rogue Farms. West Route. East Route. Rogue Farms is a bit spendy for what it is, but has a cool atmosphere.

That bed and breakfast is your best bet if you want to stay in Brownville. There's a Travel Lodge next to a truck stop off I5 5 miles off your route.

I've experienced some nasty wind down around the Brownsville/Harisburg areas in the summer. They've been anything from North to South to West to East. They seem to be bad when it's really hot out.

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Old 08-26-17, 02:10 PM
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Originally Posted by spinnaker
Really can't find much on lodging. Unless Google is just coming up with them. For example Brownsville. I will be coming from Salem so Albany is too soon but Eugene is over the limit for me. Brownsville is about right because it sets me up for a nice easy 30 mile ride into Eugene with plenty of time to catch the 5PM train.

Google search of Brownsville lodging shows only 1 B&B. AirBNB shows a couple more but not finding anything in the way of traditional motels there.
You are correct. There is not a motel in Brownsville, just a B&B. However, there is a motel about 3 miles west on HWY 228 near I5
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Old 08-26-17, 02:14 PM
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Originally Posted by Doug64
You are correct. There is not a motel in Brownsville, just a B&B. However, there is a motel about 3 miles west on HWY 228 near I5

Oh see it there now!!! Thanks Doug!

And there is a truck Plaza there so I assume a restaurant.
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Old 08-26-17, 02:21 PM
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Originally Posted by spinnaker
So the wind will be against me going south? I thought I read that the wind is usually out of the north during the summer in the valley.
In the Willamette Valley, summer winds are from the north. What little heat we get causes the air to warm and lowers its density, so that it rises up the hills. It is replaced by air from the ocean that mostly comes up the Columbia to PDX. This sets up a north to south flow all day long with stronger flows later in the day.
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Old 08-26-17, 02:24 PM
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Originally Posted by mtnbud
Riding to the Rogue Farms is a 1 mile or two out of your way if you deviate from the bikeway by riding on the west side of the Willamette River. The west side actually a shorter distance if you skip the side trip to Rogue Farms. West Route. East Route. Rogue Farms is a bit spendy for what it is, but has a cool atmosphere.

That bed and breakfast is your best bet if you want to stay in Brownville. There's a Travel Lodge next to a truck stop off I5 5 miles off your route.

I've experienced some nasty wind down around the Brownsville/Harisburg areas in the summer. They've been anything from North to South to West to East. They seem to be bad when it's really hot out.

Thanks to you also mtnbud on the Travellodge tip. From what google is telling me, that Travelodge is right on the bikeway. Or at least that is what they are calling those set of roads that rub right along I5..

Ride with gps tells a different story.

https://ridewithgps.com/ambassador_r...scenic-bikeway

Is there any compelling reason to go back to the actual bikeway for that stretch?
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Old 08-26-17, 02:27 PM
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Originally Posted by B. Carfree
In the Willamette Valley, summer winds are from the north. What little heat we get causes the air to warm and lowers its density, so that it rises up the hills. It is replaced by air from the ocean that mostly comes up the Columbia to PDX. This sets up a north to south flow all day long with stronger flows later in the day.

That is really good news. So at least it "should" be behind me coming from Portland.

So what about wind on the gorge? I thought I read somewhere that in the summer it blows west??? Because my plan was to catch the shuttle to the falls, ride down the gorge then head off to Oregon City for the night. Hopefully the wind will be behind me for my short ride on the gorge?
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Old 08-26-17, 02:42 PM
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Originally Posted by spinnaker
That is really good news. So at least it "should" be behind me coming from Portland.

So what about wind on the gorge? I thought I read somewhere that in the summer it blows west??? Because my plan was to catch the shuttle to the falls, ride down the gorge then head off to Oregon City for the night. Hopefully the wind will be behind me for my short ride on the gorge?
With the caveat that I don't ride in the gorge often enough to have first-hand knowledge:

Wind & Water - Hood River County Chamber of Commerce

The wind is the sustaining and driving force of the Columbia Gorge region. From late spring to early fall, it blows steady and strong from the Pacific Ocean to the east. As fall slouches toward winter and the weather turns cooler, the winds come fierce and cool from the Rockies and high desert to the west.
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Old 08-26-17, 02:57 PM
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Originally Posted by B. Carfree
With the caveat that I don't ride in the gorge often enough to have first-hand knowledge:

Wind & Water - Hood River County Chamber of Commerce
Oh thanks for that! That changes things a bit. Maybe the shuttle back to Portland then.
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Old 08-26-17, 05:07 PM
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Originally Posted by spinnaker
Thanks to you also mtnbud on the Travellodge tip. From what google is telling me, that Travelodge is right on the bikeway. Or at least that is what they are calling those set of roads that rub right along I5..
Is there any compelling reason to go back to the actual bikeway for that stretch?
I wouldn't - Gap Road is a bit more scenic. It climbs a bit and has lots of trees (Doug Firs). Paralleling I5 on side roads will be flat along agricultural fields. You're looking at 8 miles to parallel I5 compared to 16 miles to backtrack.

BTW - I just found this cue sheet for the Willamette River Bikeway. Not sure if you found this yet. It might have some good details for your trip.

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Old 08-26-17, 05:52 PM
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Wow thanks for the cue sheet. I was looking for a map too!

Yeah maybe I will just bite the bullet and stay in Brownsville at the B&B, probably more interesting there anyway.

And if a buddy goes along it will be a deal because you get the whole house, so that means separate rooms!

Plus there are the airbnb options too.
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Old 08-26-17, 07:07 PM
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Originally Posted by mtnbud
I wouldn't - Gap Road is a bit more scenic. It climbs a bit and has lots of trees (Doug Firs). Paralleling I5 on side roads will be flat along agricultural fields. You're looking at 8 miles to parallel I5 compared to 16 miles to backtrack.

BTW - I just found this cue sheet for the Willamette River Bikeway. Not sure if you found this yet. It might have some good details for your trip.
+1

If the OP was staying at the motel I'd suggest an alternative route of heading west on 228 from the motel and taking Falk Road south, rejoining the Bikeway on Diamond Hill Road. There is nothing wrong with going back to Brownsville and taking the Gap road, but it would not be worth it to me.

The route is pretty well signed and it is pretty hard to stray off of it accidentally.

Last edited by Doug64; 08-26-17 at 07:11 PM.
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Old 08-26-17, 07:27 PM
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Originally Posted by Doug64
+1

If the OP was staying at the motel I'd suggest an alternative route of heading west on 228 from the motel and taking Falk Road south, rejoining the Bikeway on Diamond Hill Road. There is nothing wrong with going back to Brownsville and taking the Gap road, but it would not be worth it to me.

The route is pretty well signed and it is pretty hard to stray off of it accidentally.
Same distance wise but at least I would not be retracing my path.

So would you stay in Brownsville or at the motel? Yeah I know you would not stop and go all the way to Eugene. But if you were going to stop?
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Old 08-26-17, 08:03 PM
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I noticed from [MENTION=242099]mtnbud[/MENTION] 's wonderful tip sheet link the bikeway goes to Williamette Mission State Park. Is there any reason to go there if not camping? Or should I stay on River Road?
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Old 08-26-17, 08:09 PM
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Originally Posted by spinnaker
Same distance wise but at least I would not be retracing my path.

So would you stay in Brownsville or at the motel? Yeah I know you would not stop and go all the way to Eugene. But if you were going to stop?
No, there is a pretty good chance that I'd also stop, and stopping at Brownsville is a nice way to split it up. I have friends in Brownsville so I'm a little biased. Brownsville is definitely a nicer place to stay. For a great dinner try Kirk's Ferry.

Thompson's Mill State Park is near the bikeway near Brownsville, and is an interesting stop

I live about 19 miles east of Brownsville so I have not ridden the portion of the WVSB from Salem to Eugene in one stretch. We have ridden from our house to Brownsville and then the bikeway to Eugene, and from Brownsville north, but not during the same ride. We do ride the Albany, Corvallis, Brownsville, Harrisburg Eugene area a lot.



Brownsville


A good place for lunch, and it is a Bike Friendly Business.


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Old 08-26-17, 09:30 PM
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Originally Posted by spinnaker
I noticed from [MENTION=242099]mtnbud[/MENTION] 's wonderful tip sheet link the bikeway goes to Williamette Mission State Park. Is there any reason to go there if not camping? Or should I stay on River Road?
Willamette Mission State Park isn't all that special. It does have the nations largest black cottonwood tree, some bike paths and it is one of the few places to camp along the route. There's a ferry across the river there too. I wouldn't detour into the park unless I felt like taking a long break.

I believe the WV Bikeway's route has less traffic, but the shoulder on North River Road isn't too bad. I would take advantage of the routing once you get into Salem to avoid non-bike friendly roads. One change I would make from the published route is to head to Riverfront Park in Salem and cross the new pedestrian bridge on the south end of the park which will take you into Minto Island Park and avoiding an annoying section of the bike path on South River Road.

The small downtown area of Brownsville is cute and I have heard from others that the bar there also has good food.

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Old 08-26-17, 11:25 PM
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Originally Posted by spinnaker
Ummm Yeah. The whole reason for riding on the train.
You'll still see a lot regardless.

Originally Posted by spinnaker
Thanks. I have been touring a number of years now so I am well aware of making reservations ahead of time.

Independence seems to me a bit off the bikeway. Is a place to eat really worth a detour?
Independence isn't far off of the bikeway. Less than a mile. Instead of turning right before the bridge you cross the Willamette River and take a right after the bridge and the town is right there. There's a hiker/biker camp in town ($10/night). It's a cool town. Going into Independence might add 2 miles round trip.

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Old 08-26-17, 11:28 PM
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PS: We always eat at Kirks Ferry Trading Post in Brownsville. Take a right onto Bishop and it's right up the road. 1/4 mile off the official route. Lovely place IMO.
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Old 08-27-17, 01:30 AM
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Wow, snooze for a few hours and you guys go bonkers with posts.

A few comments.

We can get some beautiful spring weather in April/May, but also a high likelihood that you'll get dumped on with rain in any given week.

It starts getting dryer around June 15, although a few days of rain are still possible. Best if you can plan around weather forecasts. Still, late June would probably be ok.

Mostly dry in July, August, and early September. A few days in 90's, but mostly highs in 70's and 80's. Rarely over 100.

Fires and smoke can be a problem in August.

I believe the Mckenzie pass (hwy 242) is also closed till about July 15. Winter riding varies. I got up there in February a couple of years ago, but don't count on being able to get through to Sisters until mid June or so.

I haven't ridden to Crater Lake in the winter, but if you ride up there in March, then plan on bringing your skis.

Oh, that reminds me, Mt Hood has year-around skiing. Want to go skiing in July or August?

The Brownsville park also has camping. Also camping at Armitage near Eugene, Champoeg at northern end, and a park just north of Salem.
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