Portland geologist Lalo Guerrero shares the dirt on local trails

Posted on May 15th, 2020 at 9:55 am.

40-year-old molten lava from Plains of Abraham trail in Washington.

Lalo Guerrero.
(Photos: Lalo Guerrero/Trailside Geology)

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Amid sea of closures, Forest Park remains open for business

Posted on April 3rd, 2020 at 8:23 am.

It’s nearly impossible to ride the Newton Road trail right now without coming into close contact with other people.
(Note: Photo taken last year.)
(Photos: J. Maus/BikePortland)

If you think it’s hard to comply with social distancing guidelines on narrow sidewalks and bike lanes in Portland, you should try doing it on singletrack trails in Forest Park.

But that hasn’t stopped the City of Portland from keeping the much-loved urban park open.

While trails in the Columbia River Gorge and elsewhere throughout Oregon are closed — and the Portland Parks & Recreation Bureau has opted to close basketball courts, skateparks and roads around 10 other local parks in an effort to discourage use and help people maintain their distance, Forest Park has avoided closures thus far.

I’ve biked through the park several times recently and the parking lots have been very crowded. It got me wondering; if the Parks Bureau has closed basketball courts and skateparks, why would they keep Forest Park trails open while they continue to attract such large crowds? I was also curious how it’s physically possible to maintain a six-foot passing distance on trails in heavily forested areas that are just 18 to 30-inches wide.

I put my questions to two people: Portland Parks Media Relations Director Mark Ross and Forest Park Conservancy Executive Director Renée Myers.[Read more…]

Discovering new off-road options at Rocky Point

Posted on March 24th, 2020 at 10:24 am.

An hour ride from my backyard.
(Photos © J. Maus/BikePortland)

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84 volunteers built a half-mile of new MTB trail at Rocky Point on Saturday

Posted on March 10th, 2020 at 11:36 am.

(All photos © Derrin Battles)

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Rocky Point Trail system is an exciting work in progress

Posted on March 9th, 2020 at 4:26 pm.

Trail builders test the fruits of their labor at Rocky Point trail system about 20 miles north of downtown Portland.
(Photos: Jason Van Horn)

This article was written and photographed by Jason Van Horn and it first appeared on his website, Bermstyle.[Read more…]

Here’s how to start riding at the Rocky Point Recreation Area

Posted on August 7th, 2019 at 12:15 pm.

Overhead look at the Rocky Point Recreation Area via Google Maps. Rocky Point Road is in upper right corner.

At the end of last month the Portland-based nonprofit Northwest Trail Alliance (NWTA) announced a groundbreaking partnership with Weyerhaeuser Company that opened up 3,100 acres of off-road riding just 14 miles from downtown. While still raw and relatively undeveloped, the Rocky Point Recreation Area is the best and most expansive place for mountain biking and gravel grinding that doesn’t require an hour-plus drive for Portland residents.

Since we posted our story at the end of July, NWTA’s lease has become effective and the group has released more information about how to access the area. In order to start riding and exploring out at Rocky Point, here’s what you need to know:
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Timberline Bike Park on Mt. Hood set to open any day now – UPDATED

Posted on August 6th, 2019 at 10:49 am.

Riders at the entrance to the new park at a preview day last week.
(Photos: Timberline Lodge & Ski Area)

After nine years of court battles and delays, a new mountain bike part at Timberline Lodge is finally ready to ride.[Read more…]

NW Trail Alliance signs lease to manage 3,000-acre parcel north of Portland

Posted on July 29th, 2019 at 9:00 am.

Lease boundary map. Multnomah Channel and Sauvie Island are on the right.
(Click to enlarge)

Portland-based nonprofit Northwest Trail Alliance has signed a lease agreement with Weyerhaeuser that allows them to manage nearly 3,000 acres of forested land between Highway 30 and Skyline Road just 15 miles north of Portland City Hall.

To put the size of the parcel into perspective, it’s roughly equivalent to a section of Forest Park between the Thurman gate in northwest Portland and the St. Johns Bridge.

This is literally and figuratively a very big deal.

Known as the Rocky Point parcel because it straddles Rocky Point Road, the land offers a trove of opportunities for both gravel and singletrack trail riding. The northern part of the property (about 20% of total land on the lease) is already a well-known spot for mountain biking with access via turnouts on Rocky Point Road; but the trails are informal, undeveloped — and due to forestry operations — access is often closed without warning.
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Policymakers ride off-road trails amid pleas for more of them

Posted on June 25th, 2019 at 3:13 pm.

Tom Armstrong from the Portland Bureau of Planning and Sustainability is the lead project manager for the Off-Road Cycling Master Plan. I think it’s safe to say that he now has a much better understanding of what he’s working on.
(Photos: J. Maus/BikePortland)

Hoping to create a stronger appetite among policymakers for more off-road cycling trails, volunteer advocates with the Northwest Trail Alliance offered up a tasty appetizer on Friday.
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Advocates will ride with policymakers to urge Off-road Cycling Master Plan completion

Posted on June 19th, 2019 at 1:00 pm.

People turned out in large numbers for a 2015 rally to protest the lack of cycling access in River View Natural Area.
(Photos: J. Maus/BikePortland)

It’s been over four years since the City of Portland embarked on an effort to create a master plan for off-road cycling. The draft of the Off-road Cycling Master Plan came out in November 2017.[Read more…]