Ride: Mountains, Valleys, and Prairies, Oh My
Organizer: Joshua Bryant
Date: Aug 25-26, 2012
Start Time: 5:00 am (SHARP)
Registration Time: 4:15am - 4:45am
Entry Fee: $10
Start Location: Woodstock Park, Portland, OR
Photos sets from the 2012 brevet: Kevin's Theo's David's
This ride starts in Woodstock Park in SE Portland, OR. Sign in between 4:15-4:45.
Parking along the park on 47th or on Steele. It's relatively safe here, but please don't leave anything super valuable to temp the recycling enthusiasts that migrate all over Portland. This ride leaves ON TIME; your brevet organizer is riding this day too. Please preregister to speed things up in the morning. This ride requires 3 water bottles and recommends a space blanket for anyone riding straight through. We will not let folks ride unprepared.
Ok, Now the fun stuff. In short, the course has a wonderful rhythm, challenging you and pushing you until you've just about had too much and then the roads relent and offer you a satisfied feeling of accomplishment. A fun ride that will put a grimace on your face at times and at others a cheeky grin. I had an idea to link as many quiet, scenic roads together as I could and this course does not disappoint. To start, we make our way through the Woodstock neighborhood, heading south to Oregon City. Then we quickly climb out of the Willamette River basin as we head along rolling roads that get quieter as the kilometers progress towards our first informational control. We then head south towards Silverton, the section past Molalla offering some nice climbing and good views. South of Silverton will be familiar to many of you until we reach Waldo Hills Dr, the turnoff towards Aumsville, our next control. Stock up at the Stop-N-Save as you've got some painful rollers heading into Independence. They'll sap your speed and probably having you cursing the organizer. Just remember that Hylo rd is aptly named and there isn't rest until you get to River rd. Now the route offers some relief staying relatively flat to gently rolling for some time. (There's that rhythm thing) After passing through some lovely valley views and gently rolling hills you end up at the confluence of the Airlie Valley and the Kings Valley then quickly on to the next info control just south of Pedee, OR. Answer the question and continue on a bit, as there is a convenience store about 2 miles along if you need to resupply. This is the most convenient stop until you get up and over the climb into Alsea, OR, our next control. After stopping at the mercantile, stocking up on food, water, suspenders and that bear skin rug you always wanted, we follow a few turns and into a narrowing valley that correctly suggests we start climbing again. We climb a quiet wooded road for a while and then descend into another gorgeous valley making our way towards Monroe. From here there's about 20 miles of flat road with little shade to our next info control. After answering yet another question, you'll begin climbing again. (I think this ride will inspire most to be a bit reluctant to answer questions fearing the immediate hard work after sharing their knowledge.) You pass through a lovely section that is simultaneously reminiscent of Northern California and Montana. Finally reaching the "gap" of Gap rd, (gap is east coast speak for pass) you make a fast descent, possibly the funnest of the course, towards Brownsville, the second oldest city in Oregon. Immediately after crossing the bridge into town, we follow the quiet Kirk ave and Northern dr, a much more pleasant alternative to OR-228s. We avoid OR-228s as much as possible by offering roads with a bit more topography heading into Sweet Home, our "overnight" control. Stock your bags here, or if you are running a bit slower, back in Brownsville as the next section gets, well, noticeable. It's about 8 miles of nearly flat and then after the turn onto Quartzville rd, the road tends generally up for the next 40 miles. At about mile 22 there is a campsite that serves as another info control as well a place to top water bottles. I highly suggest that you do, as the next section pitches up more and more as the road goes forward. When you've just about had too much, or for some WAY beyond that, the road crests and you begin a lovely rolling descent for the next 20 miles. The pleasant breaks in your downward progress keep your muscles warm and ready. A short climb after the 5-way intersection, you begin another quick descent, but use diligence as this one truly is downhill until you join OR-22. Then, it's a more gradual downhill until you reach Detroit. Stock up here as you've got another good climb and a total of 45 miles to the next available service at Ripplebrook ranger station. Then, a nice bit of downhill from here and if the weathers warm, soon enough you'll likely be faced with a headwind coming up the Clackamas River basin. This leads us to the turnoff of Faraday rd, avoiding the lovely climb just before our penultimate control in Estacada. We'll continue along OR-224 until the turnoff to Amisigger rd, a road that definitely grabs your attention as you climb out of the river basin. Soon though, we're back onto the Springwater trail and a few more turns while maintaining a flat relief for the remaining 14 miles. Then, you're back at Woodstock park where you started. There will be some light snacks and recommendations for places to eat nearby after. If you've made it this far, pat yourself on the back for completing a lovely, scenic, quiet and challenging route. The wonderful Interwebs suggest about 17000 feet of elevation gain for this 605km course.
In keeping with the historic origins of the sport, this will be an unsupported ride. No drop bags. No on-route presence with snacks or water. I've tried as best as I could to note water on the route sheet through the remote portions that come along after the "overnight" control and there is ample provisions on course for most of the route. Riders should make their own reservations in Sweet Home, should they want a place to sleep. Alternately, there is ample camping starting about 8 miles outside of Sweet Home.
Here is some lodging information for you:
Motel 6 Portland Central
3104 Southeast Powell Boulevard, Portland, OR
Econo Lodge Near Clackamas Town Center
4512 Southeast 82nd Avenue, Portland, OR
3026 Hwy 20
Sweet Home, OR 97386
Sweet Home Inn
805 Long Street
Sweet Home, OR 97386
All riders should be familiar with and abide by rider expectations.
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