From Portland to Mt. Hood, on a bike path? Yes.

Detail of Tickle Creek Trail from map
in Bi-State Regional Trails System plan.

I caught an article in the Daily Journal of Commerce yesterday about an effort by the City of Sandy to fund and build a new trail that would connect to the Springwater Corridor Trail and result in an unbroken path all the way from downtown Portland to Mt. Hood. And then I got all excited.

I hadn’t heard much about this so I went digging for more info. The trail is known as the Tickle Creek Trail and it’s part of what Metro calls the “Mt. Hood Connections” project.

The new trail would head east from the southern terminus of the Springwater Trail in Boring, making a six-mile jaunt into the city of Sandy (which is the gateway to Mt. Hood). Metro has listed it as one of 37 trails in their Bi-State Regional Trails System Plan and it’s one of their “Urban to Nature Active Transportation Corridors.”

The trail has even caught the attention of Congressman Earl Blumenauer, who has requested a $1.5 million appropriation to fund initial planning, easement acquisition, and design (total estimated cost of the trail is $7.8 million). That initial investment is meant to move the project up to “shovel-ready status,” thereby making it eligible for a number of federal funding sources.

The tourism potential of this trail is much of what’s driving the momentum from both the City of Sandy and from Blumenauer.

From the Congressman’s appropriations request:

“Mt. Hood Connections will be accessible from the Portland International Airport and Oregon’s largest metropolitan area via feeder bikeways and a sophisticated mass transit system. With the addition of the critical Tickle Creek link, the journey by bicycle to Mt. Hood becomes a long-term economic benefit as a major asset for visitor services and tourism businesses along the way.”

In the DJC article, Sandy City Manager Scott Lazenby says it would benefit his city from a tourism standpoint because it would allow Portlanders to “reach nature without using a car.” It would also connect Sandy residents to Portland. Lazenby tells the DJC that, “My wife and I have used surface roads and then ridden down to Sellwood for breakfast.”

Mr. Lazenby, when this trail gets built, we’ll lead a ride of hundreds of Portlanders to Sandy for breakfast!

If you’re excited about projects like this, get involved by staying tuned for more updates, attending the Oregon Bike Summit in June or following the work of The Intertwine Alliance.

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