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TiAx
05-12-2007, 05:52 PM
Just thought I'd let folks know that the road to Larch Mountain should be free of snow about now. I rode it last week and the road was blocked at 14 miles (right near the top) by about two feet of snow. After these warm days of late, it's probably just about melted.

The gate is still locked at 10 miles in, keeping cars out, so here's that time of year to ride an open forest climb, free of traffic. Bicycling Magazine had Larch as the best climb in the state (I don't agree, but hey), so here's a great time to ride it.

rainperimeter
05-13-2007, 08:59 PM
the oregonian on friday said the road was now open...

mtmann
05-14-2007, 12:52 PM
. Bicycling Magazine had Larch as the best climb in the state (I don't agree, but hey), so here's a great time to ride it.

I'm planning on going up real soon. Just curious - so what DO you consider to be the best climb in the state?

cyclotouriste
05-14-2007, 03:46 PM
I'm planning on going up real soon. Just curious - so what DO you consider to be the best climb in the state?

I love Larch, but I really want to do McKenzie Pass.

Of the ones that I've done, Mitchell up to Ochoco Pass is pretty good. John Day River/Clarno up to the summit above Fossil is epic. The best, though, is probably Monument to Long Creek -- that one's mind-bending.

But I love Larch because I can do it in a day, riding from my front door. (I've done the others from my front door, too, just not in a day. ;)

fetishridr
05-15-2007, 12:09 PM
Mt ashland-5500 feet from the bottom to the parking lot.about 12 miles. nice quiet roads.
another one or two down south,
highway 66 out of ashland, 2500 feet, 6 miles, tons of switchbacks. its a kick ass descent also.

and conde creek road out of medford, about 4000 feet, some 10-15% pitches, single lane logging road.

as for up here in portland, larch mountain is kind of boring for me. but its the only long sustained climb. i usually hit up gordon creek road and ride the steep shorter sections if i want to suffer.

nuovorecord
05-16-2007, 02:35 PM
A couple others to add to the list:

Riding up to Timberline Lodge is always rewarding, but the traffic makes it a less-than-optimal experience.

Seven-Mile Road, from Mosier to The Dalles is fun. Start in Hood River, take the Gorge multi-use trail to Mosier. Take a right turn at the ice cream/espresso/Porsche museum in Mosier, go one block, take a left and it's about 7 miles to the summit. From there, you can see Hood, Adams, St. Helens and Rainier on a clear day. The climb has varying pitches, so you get a break now and then. I wouldn't say it's difficult, just fairly long. The descent into The Dalles is great fun - big sweeping switchbacks sprawling out across the wide-open landscape. I don't recommend coming back on this route because you'll usually face a stiff headwind. Take US 30 back instead.

mtmann
05-16-2007, 08:10 PM
Riding up to Timberline Lodge is always rewarding, but the traffic makes it a less-than-optimal experience.


Try the West Leg road next time and descend it (or the main road) - much less traffic and more scenic.

TiAx
05-18-2007, 01:32 PM
Yes! The West Leg road is wonderful, probably my favorite climb in the State (that I've done). Not too steep, but pretty, almost no cars, very scenic, and very rewarding at the top.

Agree also that Mt. Ashland is a very nice, scenic climb. Agree that the old road from Hood River to The Dalles, is very nice, steep at times.

I like the roads up from Ripplebrook to Timothy, especially on Skyline there. Very quiet, beautiful part of the state.

Paulina Crater is a really nice climb. Very light, slow traffic.

The road to Waldo Lake is really nice too. But highway 58 sucks.

Roads east on 44 from Hood/35 to Dufur are nice, quiet.

While not a climb, per se, the very hilly 37 miles around Crater Lake is wonderful. Cars tend to be really slow on this road too, which is nice.

Same with the Aufenhide.

Haven't done McKenzie. It should be snow free and plowed about now, and the gate won't be open to cars for another week or so.

Lots of climbs around Eugene I haven't done. Same with Eastern Oregon, and the Ochocos. And the SE part of the State.

Really nice climbs in the Southern Oregon coast. Roads heading inland from 101 that go way up, have great views, and very little traffic. Langlois Mountain Road, for one.

If someone wants a serious workout, instead of starting up Larch mountain from the Women's Forum viewpoint, or anywhere along the Crown Point highway, try starting from the Exit 22 off I-84 in the Gorge. The road up to Corbett is a brutal 11% sustained. Going from there to the top of Larch would be 4,000' in less than 20 miles.

nuovorecord
05-23-2007, 02:33 PM
Try the West Leg road next time and descend it (or the main road) - much less traffic and more scenic.

Oh yeah...I somehow always forget about that road. Must be altitude sickness! Thanks for the tip!