It’s fun to report two separate bits of news about bike friendliness in the state park system on the same afternoon.
Milo McIver State Park and Champoeg State Heritage Area are both upgrading their bike amenities, the Oregon Parks and Recreation Department said Wednesday. They’ll get new lockers for gear and food storage; phone charging stations; and bicycle fix-it stations, plus new group shelters. A third park, Bullards Beach State Park on the southern Oregon coast, will be upgraded too.
Here’s more from the state:
A hiker/biker site is a camping area for people that are traveling by bicycle or foot without a support vehicle. Cyclists can set their tents anywhere in the area, and share communal picnic tables and fire pits. Reservations are not accepted or needed.
The Bullards and Milo McIver hiker/biker sites were re-located to better spots. Solar powered phone charging stations and fix-it stations were added in the move. The Champoeg fix-it station is located in the main campground so all park visitors have easy access to it. Fix-it stations have a bike stand, basic bike tools and a floor pump.
Most of the improvements at Milo McIver were made possible by a grant from Clackamas County Tourism. Scout Troup 107 volunteered hours to help build the new site. TE Connectivity through its work with the Oregon State Parks Foundation contributed funding and volunteer hours for the improvements at Champoeg State Heritage Site. Cycle Oregon’s grant program contributed funds for improvements at Bullards Beach State Park.
Milo McIver State Park is just outside of Estacada and adjacent to the Cascading Rivers Scenic Bikeway. Champoeg State Heritage Area is 30 miles north of Salem and the northern terminus of the Willamette Valley Scenic Bikeway. Bullards Beach State Park is located on the southern Oregon coast near Bandon just off of U.S. 101.
The fact that two state parks within a day’s ride of Portland and one that’s far from Portland are all prioritizing this is a testimony to the work of nonprofits like Cycle Wild and Cycle Oregon to promote and support bike touring and of quasigovernmental agencies like Travel Oregon that have brought huge statewide attention to the trend toward bike-based tourism. Also, of course, to a state parks department that’s perceptive enough to know where to find potential patrons: in saddles.
Michael Andersen was news editor of BikePortland.org from 2013 to 2016 and still pops up occasionally.