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Cross Crusade gets wet and wild in the Gorge at race #3

Posted by on October 15th, 2016 at 9:49 pm

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Quite a backdrop for bike racing.
(Photos: J. Maus/BikePortland)

The River City Bicycles Cyclocross Crusade headed to the Columbia River Gorge for race #3 in the series with the scenic town of Cascade Locks playing host. With the steep gorge cliffs on one side and the mighty Columbia on the other, hundreds of racers enjoyed an excellent day of racing despite dire storm warnings all over the news.

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The course was extremely wet and full of big puddles; but it was very rideable except for a big run-up through the forest.

By the time of my race around 1:00 there were massive lakes on the course. Racers had a choice to make: Roll through deep puddles or the thick mud. Puddles were faster but they also had hidden rocks and other surprises lurking beneath. Unsurprisingly, most people chose the path of least resistance and plowed right through the puddles.

And as always, the atmosphere around the race was as spirited and festive as ever: Beer was flowing, vendors were cooking up tasty bites, the heckling from the crowd was strong (and more supportive than insulting). Portland’s legendary ‘cross season is in full swing!

If you missed the fun today there’s another race tomorrow in the same place! Come out to Cascade Locks and be a part of the fun.

Check out more photos below:

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A huge puddle near the finish line served as the bike wash.
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Our cyclocross and adventure riding coverage is possible because of support from River City Bicycles and Giant Bicycles.

— Jonathan Maus, (503) 706-8804 – jonathan@bikeportland.org

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NOTE: We love your comments and work hard to ensure they are productive, considerate, and welcoming of all perspectives. Disagreements are encouraged, but only if done with tact and respect. If you see a mean or inappropriate comment, please contact us and we'll take a look at it right away. Also, if you comment frequently, please consider holding your thoughts so that others can step forward. Thank you — Jonathan

21 Comments
  • Avatar
    Mossby Pomegranate October 16, 2016 at 8:54 am

    These events could use more diversity.

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      Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor) October 16, 2016 at 11:42 am

      They sure could!

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        mran1984 October 16, 2016 at 11:58 pm

        Really? It looks like a bike race, not some type of social function at Oberlin. Gee, no comments about the expensive bicycles that are utilized. The money spent on Enve wheels could have been donated to someone “less fortunate”. Barf! Some folks should ride more and save this rhetoric for social service endeavors. Maybe change the name to Trust Portland.

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        J_R October 17, 2016 at 8:08 am

        A friend has been encouraging me to try cyclocross, but I’m an older white guy so I’d reinforce the non-diverse nature of the event. I guess I’d better not do it.

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          Chris I October 17, 2016 at 9:31 am

          You wouldn’t want Mossby to judge you. Better stay home.

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      Zimmerman October 16, 2016 at 5:08 pm

      It’s a frigging bicycle race with categories for all ages, sexes, weights and ability levels. Anyone can sign up, and this time you could take public transportation there in order to participate.

      How exactly do you propose the organizers make it more diverse? Why does it “need” more diversity?

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      Eric H October 16, 2016 at 9:03 pm

      So how was your race today?

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        Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor) October 17, 2016 at 9:08 am

        It was fantastic Eric… thanks for asking! I placed 13th and I’m moving up in the field just like I hoped I would. The courses have been so fun and I love the mud and wet stuff. I’ll be sharing more of my personal experiences in a separate post. Have you ever raced before? Just curious.

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          Eric H October 17, 2016 at 9:35 am

          Yep, been racing Cross here for 6 or 7 years now. My team was cheering you and the other racers on throughout the weekend.

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      dan October 17, 2016 at 9:44 am

      Looks like a playground for white professionals, isn’t that how Portland is being branded?

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        Zimmerman October 17, 2016 at 10:01 am

        God forbid any white professionals get together at a sporting event.

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        Kate October 17, 2016 at 12:53 pm

        Looks like a great way to cultivate hundreds of bike advocates across the state, including all those kids who are developing a love of bicycling early!

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      I wear many hats October 17, 2016 at 2:01 pm

      Put your time into the CCC Mossby! Or the Bahati Foundation. Bitchin’ gets you nowhere.

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      brotherfromanothermother October 18, 2016 at 6:44 pm

      By “diversity” do you mean getting more people involved racing that aren’t in marketing or graphic designers?

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    Kate October 16, 2016 at 9:28 am

    Great photos and great fun yesterday. Even with the playful heckling, it’s such a supportive community. Every time I show up before a race with something wonky happening on my bike, I always find a kind soul in a random tent willing to toss my bike up on their stand and make a few adjustments. Loving all the bike lake/wash photos.

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    Jim Lee October 16, 2016 at 6:16 pm

    Also more equity.

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      Eric H October 16, 2016 at 7:06 pm

      You’re so totally right and that’s why they awarded everyone participation medals today. It was uplifting for everyone.

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      Chris I October 17, 2016 at 9:32 am

      They could just have everyone pay what they can, pool the money, and then purchase identical bikes for all racers. Then, for the final lap, have everyone stop and wait just before the finish line so everyone can cross together. Is that what you were thinking?

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    NC October 17, 2016 at 2:38 pm

    Some of my poorest friends are bike racers. 1/2 were rich and bought nice bikes, the other half are dirt poor and their bike, be it a beater or otherwise, is their prized possession. Bike racing is a great leveller and a great community for everybody. If you can’t afford the entry fee then volunteer on course setup and breakdown, have fun do it with new friends and race for free. That is about as egalitarian as it gets.

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    mike October 20, 2016 at 4:56 pm

    The dirt loves everyone the same.

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