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Off-road advocacy, skills park experts in Portland tonight

Buffered Bike Lane with a bike symbol and arrow pointing forward

PUMP will host an off-road
advocacy presentation tonight
in Northwest Portland.
(Photo © J. Maus)

As Portland moves in on creating more off-road, urban riding areas, interest in skills parks and pump tracks is growing. However, unlike in the transportation cycling realm — where Portland is often looked upon as a leader — when it comes to off-road advocacy, we still have a lot to learn.

With that in mind, the Portland United Mountain Pedalers (PUMP) will host the Evergreen MTB Alliance at an event in Northwest Portland tonight. Evergreen is a Washington-based advocacy group that received national accolades for their success in building the Colonnade MTB Skills Park (check it out on YouTube). That riding area is located under I-5 bridge overpasses in downtown Seattle.

At the event tonight, Evergreen will discuss the Colonnade and other projects, as well as how they grew their organization from a regional MTB club into a statewide advocacy group with more than 1,000 members.

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PUMP board member Kris Schamp says tonight’s event is open to anyone interested in mountain biking, off-road cycling, or trail advocacy. “It’s more of a social where people can come to listen, get inspired, talk with like-minded folks, and share their thoughts and ideas.”

Off-road advocacy in Portland is undergoing some major changes. Last month, PUMP elected six new board members and the entire organization is going through a re-structuring and re-branding process this spring.

Currently, discussions are underway to allow more bike access in Forest Park, a major off-road riding project is gaining steam in the Gateway area, and the PDC is working with citizen advocates on a skills park near the east side of the Burnside Bridge.

Here are details on tonight’s event:

[Note: This story was posted by Elly Blue from notes and reporting by Jonathan Maus.]