oregon scenic bikeways
Oregon's State Scenic Bikeway program has really taken off in recent years. Routes have sprung up all over the state and they're spurring economic development and providing people with great bike adventures. But so far, none of them are very close to Portland.
Now comes word from the Oregon Parks and Recreation Department that there's a proposal on the table to designate a new scenic bikeway that would be relatively close to Portland and would begin just south of Hillsboro. (more...)
Travel Oregon has just released the first in a series of new videos in their ongoing effort to promote Oregon's burgeoning network of officially designated State Scenic Bikeways. Last week we shared a bikeways marketing push that made its way onto a jumbotron in New York City's Times Square.
To make the two-minute video (watch it below), the agency commissioned the Portland-based bike touring advocacy and journalism duo of Russ Roca and his partner Laura Crawford of Path Less Pedaled. Kristin Dahl, senior manager of destination development for Travel Oregon, said they plan to do a similar video for each of the nine officially designated scenic bikeway routes and they'll be rolled out through spring of next year.
Travel Oregon (a combined effort of the Oregon Parks and Recreation Department and the Oregon Tourism Commission) is continuing their aggressive promotion of Oregon as a premier bicycling destination. Last week they announced the publication of a new map of their Scenic Bikeways system and today they celebrated when Times Square lit up with the news.
Travel Oregon introduced the new map earlier this week. It includes full details on the nine officially-designated Scenic Bikeway routes complete with mile markers, information about nearby parks, campgrounds, lodging, eateries, nearby bike shops, and more. The map is available free from Travel Oregon's website (where you can order a copy, it's not available online yet).
And today from New York City, Travel Oregon staffer Kristin Dahl shared a cell phone image of the Scenic Bikeways map announcement being beamed on a jumbotron high above Times Square. Check it out below the jump...
[Story and photos by Russ Roca of The Path Less Pedaled]
(Photos © Russ Roca/The Path Less Pedaled)
Eastern Oregon is known for its dry climate; but there's something taking root along its gorgeous backroads that could help grow the economy of its many small communities: bicycle tourism.
A makeshift meeting room in the Outpost Pub and Grill in John Day (pop. 1,744) is probably the last place you'd expect talk about the need of a bicycle friendly business program, community bike share or bike racks. However, this is the sort of quiet magic that a small, road-weary crew comprised of representatives from Travel Oregon and the Oregon State Parks and Recreation Department have been performing through many rural Oregon communities over the past year. (more...)
In case you missed it, the Oregon State Parks and Recreation Department released their ninth Scenic Bikeway last week. The Grande Tour Scenic Bikeway is a 134 mile, figure-eight loop between Baker City and La Grande that winds between the Wallowa and Whitman National Forests in eastern Oregon.
The Scenic Bikeway program was made into law back in 2008 and the first route, the Willamette Valley Scenic Bikeway, was designated a year later. These routes, while they don't come with physical infrastructure changes, are the backbone of Oregon's larger effort to become the premier bicycle touring destination in America. (more...)
At their meeting in John Day this morning the Oregon Parks and Recreation Department Commission voted unanimously to to designate three new State Scenic Bikeway routes. That brings the total to four and the new routes join the existing Willamette Valley Scenic Bikeway.
The three new routes are the Blue Mountain Century, the Old West Bikeway and the Three Sisters Bikeway. Each route comes with a marketing plan and the full support from city officials who see them as a way to attract bicycle tourists and spur economic growth. (more...)
The State of Oregon's Parks and Recreation Department has announced eight new routes that will soon become official Oregon Scenic Bikeways. The routes criss-cross the state, from the Willamette Valley across the Cascade Range and into eastern Oregon.
The new routes — the first to be designated by the Scenic Bikeways Committee — will join the state's sole existing official route, the Willamette Valley Scenic Bikeway. The routes were nominated by advocates and tourism officials throughout the state who answered a call from the Parks Department. State Parks' Bicycle Recreation Coordinator Alex Phillips said she and the committee were "looking for the best bicycle rides in all of Oregon." (more...)
Oregon Parks and Recreation Department
Nov. 3, 2009
OPRD Bicycle Recreation Coordinator
Oregon Scenic Bikeways program now on the road
Online handbook tells how to nominate routes for designation
Oregon bicycle riders can now nominate their favorite routes for consideration as State Scenic Bikeways.
Such designated bikeways would follow roads and bicycle paths that connect riders with outstanding scenic, historic and natural settings. The Oregon Parks and Recreation Department (OPRD) will accept nominations through Jan. 31, 2010, and annually from Nov. 1-Jan. 31 thereafter.
OPRD’s state bicycle coordinator, Alexandra Phillips, says anyone can propose a route for designation according to Oregon Administrative Rule guidelines. "The program is designed as a grassroots effort,” she said. “Nominations will need to come from local proponents."
An Oregon Scenic Bikeways handbook now online at www.oregonscenicbikeways.org gives a step-by-step designation process and provides instructions and forms for nominators. The nominations will be considered by the Oregon Scenic Bikeway Committee, an advisory group that will recommend scenic bikeway designations to the OPRD director. The Oregon Parks and Recreation Commission must give final approvals.
"The committee will be looking for proposed routes that offer thetotal experience of sights, sounds, smells, tastes and feelings of landscapes that you can have traveling at the pace of a bicycle," said
Phillips. "We hope to find the bikeways that offer the best rides in the state."
According to Phillips, the Oregon program is the first state government-sanctioned scenic bikeway designation process in the nation. The program is a partnership between Cycle Oregon, Travel Oregon, the Oregon Department of Transportation and OPRD.
The Willamette Valley Scenic Bikeway, which was developed as a 2005 pilot project by the partnership, serves as a prototype for the program. The Willamette Valley route has been officially recognized as Oregon’s first state scenic bikeway.
Bicycle Recreation Coordinator
Oregon Parks & Recreation Department
725 Summer Street NE, Ste. C
Salem, OR 97301-0792
cell phone: (503) 480-9092
fax: (503) 986-0792
When I checked the map to plan the route, I realized this was a perfect opportunity to test out the state of Oregon's first fully signed and mapped, official State Scenic Bikeway.