View Full Version : Gladstone to PSU

09-26-2006, 06:52 AM
I've been going via Oatfield road to McLoughlin through Milwaukie, to 17th to Tacoma, across the Sellwood bridge (eek!) to Macadam, to Boundary, up Corbett, down Barbur. Is there a better way to do this? Some people have recommended the Springwater from Sellwood, but I'm leery of that route early in the morning (I am a single female). Ideas?
And...once you get to PSU, where's the best place to park your bike?

09-26-2006, 07:26 AM
the springwater trail is under construction, so you won't be able to get past johnson creek blvd (i think)...but when it's done (i think november) it is definitely quick. if you are worried, bring mace or a knife. i always keep a knife in my bag...people are insane.

and i use the hawthorne bridge, too. even though powell is shorter from where i am, all i have to do is bike back up a few blocks once i'm over, and i think it's worth the extra 5 minutes to not have to worry about death during the bridge ride.

09-26-2006, 09:09 AM
That route along the Springwater corridor is creepier than it needs to be early in the morning in the dark. Your fear is totally understandable.

I would say, however, that riding across the Sellwood Bridge in the dark is fraught with considerable more peril. "Accidents" due to driver negligence or bad luck (new pothole, wet and slick bridge joints, crazy pedestrian who walks right into you) would be much more calamitous there.

You could try a few options for the Springwater section between Sellwood and the Hawthorne:

1: Fight back: zip ties and a mace holster under your top tube.

2: Safety in numbers: loiter slowly around the beginning of the trail there by Oaks Bottom until you see another rider roll through, and sit on their wheel (ride with them). Most people will appreciate the extra light.

3: Disguise: fake mustache

My wife has similar issues riding by herself. She doesn't like it. Worries she'll get a flat or other mechanical. Feels anxious and unsafe. Worries she'll get harassed or, God forbid, worse. So it sounds not uncommon. Maybe other women could chime in about it? Especially those who ride often and have dealt with it?

Hey PoPo: anything you can add from the police perspective? Do they give you guys training in defensive riding or ways to avoid, I dunno, being dragged off your bike?

Lots of luck. Me saying the following doesn't make it so either in your mind or reality, but you'll likely be quite safe riding that stretch. That said, I'll do a quick check of crime stats and see if I'm full of it. (Crime mapper stats here (http://www.gis.ci.portland.or.us/maps/police/detail.cfm?action=Assault&propertyid=&state_id=&address_id=&intersection_id=71106&dynamic_point=0&x=7648298.286&y=664600.255&place=SE%207TH%20AVE%20%26%20SE%20MALDEN%20ST&city=PORTLAND&neighborhood=SELLWOOD%2DMORELAND%20IMPROVEMENT%20L EAGUE&seg_id=129363))

09-26-2006, 09:40 AM
Oh, and here's a good source to look for bike parking (http://www.portlandonline.com/transportation/index.cfm?c=34813)-- since school started, there's probably not a lot of availability for bike lockers, but there's loads of racks.

09-26-2006, 07:47 PM
Thanks, guys. I'm going to get some mace tomorrow. I had a harrowing commute this morning - a near miss in Sellwood, followed by the usual thrill ride that is the Sellwood bridge. :-0
The possible spookiness of the Springwater trail looks pretty inviting at this point (hypothetical attackers vs. the feeling my days are numbered if I continue to play on the bridge), and I rode across the Hawthorne bridge for the first time this afternoon and could not believe how peaceful it felt. I also had no problem parking my bike at school - PSU has incredible numbers of bike racks. :D

09-26-2006, 09:58 PM
Riding the Springwater trail is far, far better than riding across the Sellwood Bridge. Just cross at the Hawthorn Bridge and then ride up Broadway to PSU. You'll have plenty of company along the way.

I don't think the Springwater is anywhere as bad as it's being made out to be. I've been commuting on it almost every work day since it's been open (and commuted across the Sellwood Bridge for years before that) and have never seen (nor heard of) any problems. While there are homeless folks along the trail, there are far more commuters and runners out there. The most dangerous part of the commute is when you get around all of those crazy cars!

09-27-2006, 05:23 AM
I was wondering about that - I see SO many people out there on weekends when I'm running it (I am a runner before I am a cyclist, I'm afraid), and I was wondering if there are still quite a few on it early in the morning. I pretty much don't have to be out until 8 am - my first class is at 10 - are there quite a few commuters on it by then? I am a bit spooked by an instance a friend told me about, when he was riding to work on it a couple of years ago and actually came across a woman who said she'd been assaulted by some teenagers there. Again though...weighing potential attacks against the likelihood of accidents on sellwood bridge...I think I'll take those potential attacks.