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  1. #1
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    Smoothest, Fastest trail near PDX?

    What gets the vote as the smoothest roller coaster descent within 60-90 minutes of Portland? With the little bit of moisture making trails here perfectly tacky, I'm looking for something where I can just light the afterburner and not have to think about rocks, roots and other shenanigans. I've got some nostalgia for my AZ, CO and UT days. Any recommendations?

  2. #2
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    Timberline to Rhody lets you flat out fly.

    Have FUN!

    G MAN
    "There's two shuttles, one to the top and one to the hospital" I LOVE this place!!!

  3. #3
    Metalheadbikerider
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    Lower Hide and Seek.

    Thread over.
    Support mtb'ing in the Portland area, join NWTA with your dollars, hands, and/or voice. nw-trail.org

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gman086 View Post
    Timberline to Rhody lets you flat out fly.

    Have FUN!
    ^This. The Timberline trail is cut but not quite finished yet at the very top, and it was a pretty sandy and blown out when I rode it a month ago, but with some moisture and more riding it should be good to go until the snow hits. Here's a thread about it: Timberline to Town or "Crosstown Trail"
    You can also take the Glade trail down but there's some pretty serious baby heads on that one.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by strader View Post
    ^This. The Timberline trail is cut but not quite finished yet at the very top, and it was a pretty sandy and blown out when I rode it a month ago, but with some moisture and more riding it should be good to go until the snow hits. Here's a thread about it: Timberline to Town or "Crosstown Trail"
    You can also take the Glade trail down but there's some pretty serious baby heads on that one.
    I watched your Garmin run, would it be correct to assume the prime section was that part you repeated twice? If I didn't have time to run the whole thing from rody is there a way of parking more up towards government camp and getting on the trail at kiwanis camp or glacier view? This trail is new and separate from the Glades trail correct?

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Backcountry Medic View Post
    What gets the vote as the smoothest roller coaster descent within 60-90 minutes of Portland? With the little bit of moisture making trails here perfectly tacky, I'm looking for something where I can just light the afterburner and not have to think about rocks, roots and other shenanigans. I've got some nostalgia for my AZ, CO and UT days. Any recommendations?
    Oakridge, OR for some of the smoothest, fastest single trails around (2.5hrs away though) with votes for Alpine trail, Tire Mt., Lawler, Hardesty, Moon Point and Larison Rock (although only a few miles in length, but rips at about 2k descent). All bomber smooth, mostly rock-free great trail descents here.

    90-120min from Portland would have to be Dog River descent (7 miles long with just one very brief off camber rock secion and brief rolly climb), or Knebal Springs/8-mile Creek fig-8loop that has two really good bomber single descents as well.

    45-60 min away, parts of T-line trail to town and Crosstown/PBT to hwy 26 only (the rest is a mostly a dry, rocky double wide creek bed) as otherw mentioned and perhaps the Story Burn descent (south and north side from top of Storey Burn Rd. in Tillamook NF). And I think Nestor Peak is a ripper, great trail, mostly smooth descent as well that is about 75 min away and can't believe I almost forgot Falls Creek that is about 17 miles of mostly fast, smooth buffed trails as well with some climbing in between, but mostly rolly.

    That should about cover it, but there are many other good rides in the general area as well.
    Ride On!

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by free-agent View Post
    Thread over.
    That rips, but at only 1.75 miles in length, may be a bit short for the OP. Trying to think of long, bomber trail descents I think here.
    Ride On!

  8. #8
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    I'll have to agree with jgusta, pretty much what I was going to say.

    I'll add...The trails off of Larch Mt Oregon, not sure off hand what the trail numbers are, they are fast and buff, but a little short.

    The Ape Canyon trail is very buff and very fast, almost too fast, it's over way to quick.

    Capitol Forest has some very buff trail.

    It's mostly closed now, but the descent from Bells Mt road north to Reehers Camp on the Gales Creek Trail is good. The south side down from Bells Mt road isn't too bad either. I really miss this trail too.

    If you can ever figure out what sections are open or closed due to logging, the Tarbell Trail has some fast buff trail and the section off of Larch Mt is really good too. I think they refer to this as the Cold Creek Trail?
    I only ride bikes to fill the time when I'm not skiing.

  9. #9
    Daniel the Dog
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    Falls Creek is super fast down low.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jaybo View Post
    Falls Creek is super fast down low.
    Yeah, that lower section has to be one of the buffest sections of trail around.

    How about that short ribbon of trail at Syncline above Coyote through the pasture. It's a pretty short straightaway and only a few inches wide, but it's super fun.
    I only ride bikes to fill the time when I'm not skiing.

  11. #11
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    Yeah, I love that section leading into the camping area and from there to the TH at Falls Creek. Definitely on rails with that one.

    I love Larch Mountain and Sandy, both are my close quick and dirty rides, but they are lacking in that long super constant slide I was looking for.

    I think Timberline to Town has some promise, I'll probably try out miles 10-30 from strader's ride in the other topic. I'll let you know how it next time the weather looks manageable. I'll try to knock off a few other suggestions as well.

    Thanks!

  12. #12
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    PCT from Lil' Huckleberry to Panther Creek.Cannot be beat.Yeah...I know it's the preferred cyclists trail.It is so buff you could fly on a big wheel.Falls Creek from the horse camp is all big ring...if you want it!
    Master of Laundry...Lord of Cleaning!

  13. #13
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    LEWIS RIVER TRAIL. 12 miles of smooth, fast, firm, old growth singletrack highway.

    WOULD NOT RECCOMMEND:
    OROR's ALPINE TRAIL: torn up from two MBO's, multiple DH Races, daily OA shuttles, etc. not really buffed out this time of year
    OREGON LARCH MOUNTAIN: buff? huh? try the exact oppositie, it's literally riding in a rocky stream bed. as tech as it gets.

  14. #14
    juan
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    Wilson River Trail has some serious smooth and fast roller coasty descents.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Backcountry Medic View Post
    I watched your Garmin run, would it be correct to assume the prime section was that part you repeated twice? If I didn't have time to run the whole thing from rody is there a way of parking more up towards government camp and getting on the trail at kiwanis camp or glacier view? This trail is new and separate from the Glades trail correct?
    Yeah, the part I did twice is the new section of trail, and at the time I could not ride it all the way to the top. Lot of ways to do this trail, out and back on it's own or with Crosstown+Pioneer Bridle, as a loop riding up Westleg Road (hardly any traffic on this one), or as a shuttle from Timberline to where Pioneer Bridle dumps out on hwy 26.
    Storey Burn trail suggested by jgusta is a good one within a hour of Portland, don't know why I didn't think of that since i ride it every other week.
    Wilson River is a good flowy trail too, but the best section of downhill has been absolutely pulverized by equestrians since it was opened to them this summer. Expect to do some serious climbing on this one too.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by phreadi View Post
    OREGON LARCH MOUNTAIN: buff? huh? try the exact oppositie, it's literally riding in a rocky stream bed. as tech as it gets.
    Trail numbers 441 and 424 off of the summit of Larch Mountain are very buff and fast with 424 being the smoother of the two.

    You are referring to trails 444 and 446 that connect 441 and 424 together and I agree with you 100%, they are probably the more technical trails that we have in the area.
    I only ride bikes to fill the time when I'm not skiing.

  17. #17
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    I'd vote for Falls Creek and Lewis River. But right now that it's raining, the east Mt Hood trails, 8 mile, Knebal, Surveyors have great smooth trail. I was out there yesterday and it started to rain. By Wednesday the trails should be nicely packed. The best time of year to ride these trails is mid-late October before it starts to snow.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by OldHouseMan View Post
    ...

    Trail numbers 441 and 424 off of the summit of Larch Mountain are very buff and fast with 424 being the smoother of the two.

    You are referring to trails 444 and 446 that connect 441 and 424 together and I agree with you 100%, they are probably the more technical trails that we have in the area.
    Yeah, you owe it to yourself to go enjoy 424 especially. It's one of my favorites, but it's best to just ride up and down a couple times and save yourself the lower riverbeds. 441 is also very packed and fast, especially from the big right hairpin to 446, although the traffic there is typically fairly heavy with hikers It was actually when I helping my wife hike-a-bike over a particularly trashed area on the connectors that I thought about the question in the OP. In either regard, they are great trails, but a little too short for what I'm wanting, right when you get into them the fun part is over and you're back to grinding. In CO there were a lot of rides where a long climb paid off with endless miles of flowing downhill.

    Lewis river trail sounds good, but clocks in at an 1:45 from my house. How does it stand up to Falls Creek-as I would drive past it to get there?

    Thanks for all the responses so far, I'll definitely be out to hit as many of them as I can over the next month or so. Probably try out Timberline tomorrow or wednesday depending on weather outlook. I'll try to throw up a video if I take one.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by poppa#1 View Post
    PCT from Lil' Huckleberry to Panther Creek.Cannot be beat.Yeah...I know it's the preferred cyclists trail.It is so buff you could fly on a big wheel.Falls Creek from the horse camp is all big ring...if you want it!
    I've backpacked that PCT section 3-4 times with illicit thoughts about a late fall, mid-week ride. I have seen tire tracks on one of trips, so it does happen. That stretch and the "preferred cyclist trail" from Wahtum Lake to Cascade Locks are a couple of sections that need to be legal.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by poppa#1 View Post
    PCT from Lil' Huckleberry to Panther Creek.Cannot be beat.Yeah...I know it's the preferred cyclists trail.It is so buff you could fly on a big wheel.
    Nice! How about Grassy Knoll trail from Huckleberry Mt at PCT junction down (heading north). I believe this trail is legit since in the GRNF.
    Ride On!

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by phreadi View Post
    WOULD NOT RECCOMMEND:
    OROR's ALPINE TRAIL: torn up from two MBO's, multiple DH Races, daily OA shuttles, etc. not really buffed out this time of year
    OREGON LARCH MOUNTAIN: buff? huh? try the exact oppositie, it's literally riding in a rocky stream bed. as tech as it gets.
    Well, it's been a bit since the last event on Alpine, 1.5 mos. since the last MBO and only one SD race I know of in early Aug. and Cream-puff of course before that. Be amazed how much a bit of rain will do for a trail like that after it has been dry for awhile. I imagine to be pretty good right now, but I haven't ridden it since last year.
    Ride On!

  22. #22
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    Lewis River for more "rolly/pollie" riding on good single surface with no continuous bomber descents and Falls Creek for some rolly with longer continous descents and less foot traffic at about 35-45min less of a drive to lower TH. Falls Creek hands down for me.
    Ride On!

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by jgusta View Post
    Nice! How about Grassy Knoll trail from Huckleberry Mt at PCT junction down (heading north). I believe this trail is legit since in the GRNF.
    Not legal according to the FS website. Also it would have be done O&B and the O would be a b$&?! climb.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vancbiker View Post
    Not legal according to the FS website. Also it would have be done O&B and the O would be a b$&?! climb.
    That's a stinker! It's amazing how a trail like Dog Mt. in SW WA is technically legal for bikes (even though it is hiker heaven and very steep, wide gravel path half the way). Whereas, something like this in middle of nowhere, not in wilderness and not on PCT is not. Yes, I would just out/back it, I am kind of nutty like that, will do almost anything my bike and legs will take me for a good, bomber descent.
    Ride On!

  25. #25
    Daniel the Dog
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    I did the Falls Creek loop last weekend. The climb up to Old Man Pass on the road is long but not very hard and the first third of Falls Creek is a bit of a snooze; however, it livens up quick at the outhouse area on down. Wow, what a descent!!! Fast and flowy.

    Dog River is a blast but really duffy right now. Wait until it rains a bit and give it a go...it is a smile fest.

    Tough call but the NW has some awesome descents!

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