View Full Version : Clackamas River (Bad News)

04-02-2007, 04:23 PM
The rainstorms of last weekend have shut down Faraday Road. My girlfriend and I pedaled out for our bike camping trip just fine on Friday, but when we came back on Sunday, there was a huge mudslide across the road. There's no telling when or if it will be re-opened, meaning that for the indefinite future, bicycle expeditions up the Clackamas will require you pedal up around 3 miles of 7% grade going out, and 2 miles of 7% grade coming back.

More about it (plus pictures) on my blog (http://escapevelocipede.blogspot.com/2007/04/3232007-to-3252007-bagby-hotsprings-140.html). I'm planning to see if PGE knows if the road will reopen in weeks/months/years or never.

04-03-2007, 09:33 PM
Damn. That's a favorite little side route to avoid some traffic.

04-04-2007, 06:38 PM
Double dammit. That is a nice way to avoid the highway. No way to do the cyclocross thing & clamber over the slide?

let us know wat you find out from PGE - let 'em know this would be a good expenditure of all those $ they fleeced from us ratepayers...

04-04-2007, 09:41 PM
I didn't even know this existed but I'm bummed! At least I have something to look forward to once it opens.

04-04-2007, 09:48 PM
I didn't even know this existed but I'm bummed! At least I have something to look forward to once it opens.

It's a great way to sidestep the highway for a stretch. The road is closed to motorized traffic for much of its length as it winds along the Clackamas river. That it avoids a biggish hill is a pleasant bonus.

04-05-2007, 08:33 AM
The slide was impassable, and believe me when I tell you that if it had been even remotely possible to portage it, I would have found a way. I really did not want to have to go back to the main highway and over the hill, or to subject my girlfriend to that. (She was awesome about it, though -- just buckled down and did it.)

I contacted PGE, and they said that the slide will definitely be cleared, but they weren't able to give me a time-frame (I asked if they could say weeks, months, years, or never.) My guess is that maybe sometime before the end of the summer, though that's really not based on anything other than a sense that if there are definite plans to clear it, that it probably won't take as long as years.

04-05-2007, 11:16 AM
I've seen the PGE guys use that road, so I think they will clear it out pretty soon.

For those that have never been there, there is a nice parking area at the end of the road, I go there a lot because it's a moderate grade up hill and you can go for miles, then have an easy ride back. Very senic with several camp grounds and day use areas to stop in.

04-06-2007, 08:00 AM
Great blog, and that is one amazing shot of the slide!

I would say that is was smart of you not to portage over it. It possibly could be unstable and capable of still moving, and you don't want to try to surf that particular wave! :)

Man, that's one road I'd love to go down (after the slide is clear). Thanks for the heads-up!


05-01-2007, 11:08 PM
That's one of the nicest roads to ride on in the state. Is it still blocked?

Matt P.
06-03-2007, 07:41 PM
That's one of the nicest roads to ride on in the state. Is it still blocked?

Yes it is, as of June 3rd. Tomas and I rode up Faraday from both directions while bike camping up the Clackamas this weekend. The road is completely impassable, with rocks and giant boulders entirely across the road. We met a PGE employee up there, he was very helpful and let us know that the PGE crews just started working on clearing the slide this week. The engineers are worried about the stability of the upper slope, and the current slide stops just short of PGE's fish ladder that extends past Cazadero Dam. He couldn't give an estimate of when the slide would be cleared.

The site is signed to keep people out, but only on one side (the Estacada side). The signs are sometimes vandalized, so they may not be visible. The roadbed is showing signs of stress as far as 20' from the rockslide. I don't advise anyone to try to portage this, nor even get too close to it.

Here's a short video of the slide area:


And here are a few pictures:


cyclotouriste, thanks for bringing this originally to our attention, and for informing me (and others) of a cooler and easier route up the Clackamas (when it's open, that is). Hopefully, PGE will get it fixed quickly!

10-29-2007, 11:02 AM
I finally got a chance to go out and check to see what the status of Faraday Road is. Yesterday, my friend Carolyn and I rode our bikes out from SE Portland to Estacada, and up the road. PGE has finished the work of clearing the slide, and Faraday is re-opened to bicycle and pedestrian traffic. In the area where the slide was, the road has been narrowed to a single lane, and the pavement is kind of beat up, but neither is even remotely a challenge to bike traffic. This re-opens the Clackamas to bike expeditions, so enjoy! Hopefully, we don't get another heavy weather/slide event anytime soon.

11-08-2007, 07:51 AM
I road up Faraday Road last Sunday, it's been repaved in several places, nice and smooth, better than it was before. It has a massive rock barrier where the slide was to keep it from happening again, very impressive.

11-08-2007, 04:05 PM
PGE may be a semi-scurrilous outfit when it comes to bilking their captive ratepayers and overpaying their execs, but you can't fault 'em for maltreatment of cyclists. I say: an extra ten large for Peggy Fowler!