Carfree Crater Lake rim ride set for September 9th and 16th

Moments you will not forget. (Photos: Jonathan Maus/BikePortland)

Looking to cap off your summer with an bucket-list worthy ride? How about riding carfree roads inside Oregon’s only national park?

The folks from Crater Lake National Park just announced that Ride the Rim will happen on two coming Saturdays, September 9th and 16th. This is a rare opportunity to pedal your bicycle around the lake’s legendary scenic road in solitude and safety without any bother from drivers.

This even began in 2013 when Travel Oregon wanted to put our state on the map as a bicycle tourism destination. It was such a huge hit that Crater Lake National Park Superintendent Craig Ackerman shared with BikePortland in an email that he wanted it to become an annual event.

By 2019, the event had become so popular 4,200 people showed up from all over the country to take part.

“Ride the Rim provides an opportunity to experience East Rim Drive in a unique way, under your own power, whether you’re on a bike or on your own two feet,” Ackerman shared in a statement yesterday. “It is a strenuous endeavor, but the rewards of a slower pace, opportunities for quiet reflection, and healthy, vigorous recreation make it a special experience for many people.”

The event itself is free, but riders still have to pay the $15-30 park entry fee. And if you go, keep in mind that the entire rim loop is 33 miles, but only 25 miles will be carfree on those two Saturdays. Eight miles of West Rim Drive will remain open to car drivers and you should either use caution while riding on it or hop on one of the free shuttles to avoid that section.

Along the route you’ll find five rest stops stocked with snacks and drinks and any aid supplies you might need. If you go, check route details and make sure you’re ready and willing to do some climbing! And note that electric bikes are allowed, but only if they are pedal-assist only. Bikes that rely on a throttle are not permitted.

Learn more and plan your trip at

Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor)

Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor)

Founder of BikePortland (in 2005). Father of three. North Portlander. Basketball lover. Car owner and driver. If you have questions or feedback about this site or my work, feel free to contact me at @jonathan_maus on Twitter, via email at, or phone/text at 503-706-8804. Also, if you read and appreciate this site, please become a supporter.

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9 months ago

33 miles and half of it is down hill. Best ride in Oregon

9 months ago

This ride is a blast! Accomodations are the biggest challenge though. The location is fairly remote and the park lodging is booked out well in advance. Be prepared for that if you go last minute.

If you have any fear of downhills, this ride can be spooky. The first time I did it, I didn’t have the best experience. Maybe the bike I was riding was too aggressive (geometry). I had been recovering mentally from a crash prior to the ride as well.

The second time I did it though, I was much happier with the ride. I rode a different bike
and was able to enjoy the long downhills. You will get going pretty fast on the downhills. Probably break your personal record for down hill speed!

The views are incredible. There’s no embankment barriers to sully the view out to the horizon. It’s just beautiful Oregon mountain prairie.

There’s no sag waggon either. Make sure you pack what you need for mechanical issues. The ride is short, but it still takes a while because it’s a lot of uphill. So prepare for a wide variety of weather.

Finally, meet new friends! Everyone is so hyped to be there!