Mountain Biking Mecca, Oakridge boasts 500 miles of perfect trails- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Mountain Biking Mecca, Oakridge boasts 500 miles of perfect trails

    http://news.statesmanjournal.com/article.cfm?i=86781

    The city boasts 500 miles of perfect trails

    ROY GAULT
    Statesman Journal
    September 16, 2004

    If you build it, they don’t necessarily always come. And Oakridge, with a mountain biking trail system that comprises its Field of Dreams, is wondering why. “Our trails get recognition every now and then, but it always fades away,” said David Chamberlain, owner of Trailhead Coffee House, which caters to the mountain biking crowd. “It never sticks, which is one of the things we’re working on.”

    It’s beginning to stick.

    Three businesses geared toward biking have moved to Oakridge in the past two years, and riders from the previously recognized Mecca, Bend, now are driving more than an hour to Oakridge to pedal its endless menu of single track.

    “That is the magic word, ‘Single track,’” said Chamberlain, who moved to Oakridge simply because he can ride out his back door onto an eternal trail. “We have the narrow trails where you feel like you’re way back in the middle of nowhere, where you don’t meet another soul for hours on end, if at all. And it’s very fast single track, smooth, rolling, very speedy and very beautiful.”

    Oakridge, 30 miles southeast of Eugene on the west flank of the Cascade Mountains, has trails for beginners, intermediate, advanced and now — with the addition of gondolas to take riders up the extreme angles of Eagle Peak at Willamette Pass — trails for the crazy.

    “I have a bike, but I can’t see hurdling downhill with nothing between me and the handle bars,” said city administrator Gordon Zimmerman. “But we’re excited to have these people in town. They bring a vibrancy, a youthfulness that’s kind of invigorating.”

    Randy Dreiling is executive director of the chamber of commerce and, as owner of Oregon Adventures, leads custom road-biking or mountain-biking rides.

    “Some people say we’re the new blood, the young guns, whatever you label it,” he said. “It’s a revolution, but at the same time we respect the history of the town.”

    That would be its history as Timber Town, population 6,000, before the Pope and Talbot mill shut down in 1985, eliminating 2,500 mill jobs and the peripheral logging and road-building jobs that kept raw materials flowing to the mill. The population now is 3,000.

    “The city realizes that it’s changing, that biking is part of the town now,” Dreiling said. “When the mill was going it was a different story, but it’s gone and there has to be something to boost the economy. Biking isn’t the only thing, but it’s a piece of the puzzle.”

    Indeed, McKenzie Bowerman, who opened Willamette Mountain Mercantile, a bike and outdoors shop in June, has been distracted by the choices in addition to mountain biking.

    “To be honest, I haven’t been riding my bike too much this summer because there’s so many things to do,” he said. “We’ve been sailing Waldo Lake, and we go running up Salmon Creek in the morning before we come down to the shop.”

    Dreiling foresees promoting Oakridge as a hub for biking, skiing, fishing, hunting and snowmobiling, saying the next boom will be kayaking.

    “We’re surrounded by national forest with exceptional trails, but there’s also five rivers, which their confluence is essentially right there in Oakridge,” Bowerman said.

    Those would be Salmon Creek, Hills Creek, Salt Creek, the North Fork of the Willamette and the Middle Fork of the Willamette.

    “It’s a gem because it has a high density of high-quality trails, and its trails are aesthetically pleasing as well as providing the kind of challenge the intermediate and advanced mountain bikers are looking for,” said Ryan Ojerio, a rider from Eugene. “You have so many types of trails within a small area, from deep old-growth forest up the Middle Fork to alpine meadows up on Alpine Trail, with views of Diamond Peak. Then you get up to Waldo Lake, and it’s more of a high-elevation, more-open forest type, a different aesthetic.”

    His favorite depends on the day.

    “It’s kind of like flavors of ice cream,” Ojerio said. “You’re in the mood for one or the other, depending.”

    Dreiling estimates there are 500 miles of trails within Oakridge.

    “It would take a lot more people to significantly change the feeling of our trails,” Chamberlain said. “I’ve ridden in areas where you have to pile through people, and that’s no fun. Oakridge is so far from that, it’s very hard to conceive it ever happening here.”

    Some of the trails are open year-round. Almost all offer good riding through October of most years.

    “You can ride anytime you want, and many of our trails are pretty protected because they’re so heavily forested,” Dreiling said. “But we also practice good trail etiquette to keep them in good shape.”

    During even the wettest of winters, there’s plenty of graveled roads to ride, but seldom must bikers get off their beloved single track. Trail maps and information are available at the Middle Fork Ranger Station at Westfir, four miles west of Oakridge on Highway 58, and in a chamber of commerce booklet that’s available at virtually every business in town.

    “I really think this area is going to be Oregon’s premiere mountain biking destination. I’d label it the mountain biking capital of the Northwest,” Dreiling said. “It is Oregon’s unknown gem just because people kind of drive through and don’t realize everything that’s here. We’re not like Bend, with a million-dollar budget to go out and market ourselves.”

    Bowerman, who caters to a wide range of outdoor enthusiasts, isn’t interested in making millions or in over-promoting a good thing.

    “Let’s keep it unknown,” he said. “We don’t want it too hyped up. Some places are just way too infused with money and hype, and I really like the kind of woodsy, unpretentious feel that Oakridge has. I’d like to keep it that way.”
    Start off slow & taper off from there.

  2. #2
    Nat
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    I need to get over there some time.

  3. #3
    Ebo
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nat
    I need to get over there some time.
    Same here. Maybe next summer we can venture over there and let some of the local posters here show us around. I offer beer of course as an incentive.

  4. #4
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    If you want to ride Oakridge, hook up with one of us... either posting here or check our Disciples of Dirt forum board. Our mtn. bike club (basically a yahoo email based group) has members in Eugene, Salem, Corvallis, Albany, Oakridge and surrounding areas.

    www.groups.yahoo.com/group/DisciplesOfDirt/

    The riding outside of Oakridge is the best I've ever ridden. The article in the newspaper is basically spot on.

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    Disciples of Dirt Mtn. bike club
    Paul's Bicycle Way of Life Cycling Team

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    my thoughts

    Brice creek is a pretty quick drive - just over the mtn from Oakridge (see a map), but it is a ROUGH trail, but very scenic.

    North shore trail is pretty fun, but more technical.
    Each section of the middle fork W. has its own "personality" - but it is generally more brushy and stays wet in places after a rain.

    I checked out Winberry and hiked it a little - it could be very promising and is much more out of the way than other trails. You had better drive to all the places you could get lost and get aquainted first.

    Lots of hunters driving really slow on back roads in Oct., but they are nice and pull over to let you pass when they see the bike on your car.

    As for kayaking, I kayak. I would be interested to know if there are any good park and surf spots on the creeks and rivers.

    The bowling alley in town is fun. They need an indoor skate park.

    I hope you all know that paradise could be lost forever if they turn our beloved trails into "wilderness" and ban bikes.

    So please fight against wilderness in this area.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by oregon111
    Brice creek is a pretty quick drive - just over the mtn from Oakridge (see a map), but it is a ROUGH trail, but very scenic.

    North shore trail is pretty fun, but more technical.
    Each section of the middle fork W. has its own "personality" - but it is generally more brushy and stays wet in places after a rain.

    I checked out Winberry and hiked it a little - it could be very promising and is much more out of the way than other trails. You had better drive to all the places you could get lost and get aquainted first.

    Lots of hunters driving really slow on back roads in Oct., but they are nice and pull over to let you pass when they see the bike on your car.

    As for kayaking, I kayak. I would be interested to know if there are any good park and surf spots on the creeks and rivers.

    The bowling alley in town is fun. They need an indoor skate park.

    I hope you all know that paradise could be lost forever if they turn our beloved trails into "wilderness" and ban bikes.

    So please fight against wilderness in this area.
    Why are you posting somewhat random comments to a six year old thread?

    And please add details you your user profile
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  7. #7
    Nat
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    Don't the terms of service state that reviving a six-year-old thread results in instant ban? Just kidding.

    I still have not explored around Oakridge enough.

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    Quote Originally Posted by oregon111
    I hope you all know that paradise could be lost forever if they turn our beloved trails into "wilderness" and ban bikes.

    So please fight against wilderness in this area.


    Bait and Switch
    "“May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view." - Edward Abbey

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    Quote Originally Posted by Nat
    ...

    I still have not explored around Oakridge enough.
    Who really has?
    I only ride bikes to fill the time when I'm not skiing.

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    Quote Originally Posted by OldHouseMan
    Who really has?
    Ridden there for 20+ years and still have not been on every trail.
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  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by sans soucie


    Bait and Switch
    It is an issue but this is a strange way to bring it up.
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  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by OldHouseMan
    Who really has?
    I have. But that's not going to keep me from continuing to do so...

    --sParty
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    We get old because we quit riding.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sparticus
    I have. But that's not going to keep me from continuing to do so...

    --sParty
    Then you haven't, the key word being "enough."
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    reply to your replies

    I thought my "random" thoughts would or could be useful to others.

    As for wilderness, just recently a whole bunch of trails in Mt Hood nat forest was "lost" to wilderness -- no more mtn biking on those trails FOREVER.

    No "bait & switch". I'm not a nutjob tea party republican - just a part-time mtn biker who loves good single track in the fall and puts Oakridge trails at the top of my list.

    Another aspect of wilderness is that they will close off all the "dispersed" camping sites - and there are a lot of really cool places to camp out there.

    If you all think wilderness is good, just ask all the mtn bikers in California & Colorado who lost their trails. Also, I heard that Montana is the next place they want to ban mtn bikes. Oakridge wilderness could come as fast as lobbying by the Sierra club elitists who don't even go into the woods -- they just watch nature shows on PBS.

    After "they" ban mtn bikes from most every other place, I can guarantee you that they will zero in on Oakridge.

    The real agenda of the elitists is to not allow man to enter the woods - because it belongs to the plants and animals - according to them.

    I have been mtn biking long before mtn bikes were even invented. Growing up, we rode single track behind our neighborhood on banana bikes. So I'll get my riding it, but those of you in your early twenties will likely see the end of mtn biking during your riding years. So yes, I think you all should take "wilderness" designations seriously. oregon111 - out.

  15. #15
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    So this rant was worth resurrecting a 6 year old thread? Why not start your own thread in the General Discussion forum? It's been hashed-to-death there countless times.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by oregon111
    I thought my "random" thoughts would or could be useful to others.

    As for wilderness, just recently a whole bunch of trails in Mt Hood nat forest was "lost" to wilderness -- no more mtn biking on those trails FOREVER.

    No "bait & switch". I'm not a nutjob tea party republican - just a part-time mtn biker who loves good single track in the fall and puts Oakridge trails at the top of my list.

    Another aspect of wilderness is that they will close off all the "dispersed" camping sites - and there are a lot of really cool places to camp out there.

    If you all think wilderness is good, just ask all the mtn bikers in California & Colorado who lost their trails. Also, I heard that Montana is the next place they want to ban mtn bikes. Oakridge wilderness could come as fast as lobbying by the Sierra club elitists who don't even go into the woods -- they just watch nature shows on PBS.

    After "they" ban mtn bikes from most every other place, I can guarantee you that they will zero in on Oakridge.

    The real agenda of the elitists is to not allow man to enter the woods - because it belongs to the plants and animals - according to them.

    I have been mtn biking long before mtn bikes were even invented. Growing up, we rode single track behind our neighborhood on banana bikes. So I'll get my riding it, but those of you in your early twenties will likely see the end of mtn biking during your riding years. So yes, I think you all should take "wilderness" designations seriously. oregon111 - out.
    The random thoughts comments are because of the thread you posted them to. You "answered " questions that were not asked and commented on trails that were not mentioned.

    Would have been better to start a new thread.

    The lack of any (or obviously fake) User Profile info is a red flag that is used for deleting accounts.
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  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by oregon111

    The real agenda of the elitists is to not allow man to enter the woods - because it belongs to the plants and animals - according to them.

    .
    I'm glad to hear that you aren't a nutjob tea party republican.
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  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sasquatch
    I'm glad to hear that you aren't a nutjob tea party republican.
    ROFL!!!

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    Ok

    OK, I'll try to get it right next time and add appropriate comments to the appropriate thread(s).

    I'll also try to get in and do the profile correctly. Thanks for the slapdowns.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by oregon111

    I have been mtn biking long before mtn bikes were even invented. Growing up, we rode single track behind our neighborhood on banana bikes. So I'll get my riding it, but those of you in your early twenties will likely see the end of mtn biking during your riding years. oregon111 - out.
    I think everyone in this thread is over the age of 40 or very close to it...
    "I wrote a hit play! What have you ever done?!"

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  21. #21
    Nat
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    Quote Originally Posted by mattsavage
    I think everyone in this thread is over the age of 40 or very close to it...
    ...[raises arthritic hand].

  22. #22
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    (raises Viagra induced.... nevermind)

  23. #23
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    Brice Creek is not an OakTucky trail.

    Brock...

    ...under 40...
    Are the wheels roundish? Ride it.

    Disciples Of Dirt, come ride with us.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by ImaKlyde
    Brice Creek is not an OakTucky trail.

    Brock...

    ...under 40...
    ...and I like that Brice Creek is rough (but do not consider it "ROUGH") in places.

    -shig, way over forty and I was riding "singletrack' before banana seats.
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    And I thought that some of the forest park threads were bizarre... As to the wilderness issue, if it gets proposed, its going to be a problem near waldo but not the main riding areas in Oakridge. The main riding trails are in areas littered by FS and logging roads, which is basically the death knell to any proposed wilderness designations. We really don't have any long backcountry rides in OR because most of those areas are already wilderness. It's simply not the same issue as they have in Montana.

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    Quote Originally Posted by thorkild
    And I thought that some of the forest park threads were bizarre... As to the wilderness issue, if it gets proposed, its going to be a problem near waldo but not the main riding areas in Oakridge. The main riding trails are in areas littered by FS and logging roads, which is basically the death knell to any proposed wilderness designations. We really don't have any long backcountry rides in OR because most of those areas are already wilderness. It's simply not the same issue as they have in Montana.
    Do not let yourself get lulled into thinking it is all OK as is.
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  27. #27
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    Jaybo ?

  28. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by shiggy
    The lack of any (or obviously fake) User Profile info is a red flag that is used for deleting accounts.
    Really? I look at the rules fro this forum and all I see is
    Also, users registering multiple accounts and posing as different people is NOT allowed and one or all of your accounts may be banned without warning.

    Nothing about a requirement to have any info in your profile, let alone accurate info. I have some less than accurate info in my profile, as do many MTBR members.
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    Quote Originally Posted by shiggy
    Do not let yourself get lulled into thinking it is all OK as is.
    Yes, you are right. I am just not so concerned about Alpine, Larrison, Hardesty, Lawler, most of the MFW, and Moon Point. Bunchgrass, the upper MFW, and some of the other remote trails I agree are much more vulnerable.

  30. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sasquatch
    Really? I look at the rules fro this forum and all I see is
    Also, users registering multiple accounts and posing as different people is NOT allowed and one or all of your accounts may be banned without warning.

    Nothing about a requirement to have any info in your profile, let alone accurate info. I have some less than accurate info in my profile, as do many MTBR members.
    Take a look at some of the spammers' UPs. Dead give away.
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  31. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by thorkild
    Yes, you are right. I am just not so concerned about Alpine, Larrison, Hardesty, Lawler, most of the MFW, and Moon Point. Bunchgrass, the upper MFW, and some of the other remote trails I agree are much more vulnerable.
    Well, the Wilderness advocates do have Hardesty, Lawler and maybe Moon Point on their target list. The existence of roads does not preclude Wilderness. There is a Wilderness Area in California that has (or had) paved roads in it. One in Washington that had an extensive motorcycle trail system.
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    Quote Originally Posted by shiggy
    Well, the Wilderness advocates do have Hardesty, Lawler and maybe Moon Point on their target list. The existence of roads does not preclude Wilderness. There is a Wilderness Area in California that has (or had) paved roads in it. One in Washington that had an extensive motorcycle trail system.
    Driven primarily logging issues I assume. Its unfortunate that mt. biking ends up as collateral damage in these issues....

  33. #33
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    The boundary along the Badger Creek Wilderness near Mt Hood just wraps around all the roads in the area. You can damn near drive to the heart of the wilderness area.
    I only ride bikes to fill the time when I'm not skiing.

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    ever been to Sedona?

    Sedona Arizona has wilderness right next to a very busy highway and shopping centers.

    the eletists only pretend it is about logging. They really are just hardcore mtn bike haters that feel bikes should never leave pavement.

    And... the democrats in congress listen to the eletists, not the mtn bikers.

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    I 've been to Sedona.
    Master of Laundry...Lord of Cleaning!

  36. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by oregon111
    And... the democrats in congress listen to the eletists, not the mtn bikers.


    Don't you mean to say, "Congress listens to the money" ?
    "“May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view." - Edward Abbey

  37. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by shiggy
    Well, the Wilderness advocates do have Hardesty, Lawler and maybe Moon Point on their target list. The existence of roads does not preclude Wilderness. There is a Wilderness Area in California that has (or had) paved roads in it. One in Washington that had an extensive motorcycle trail system.
    And most of the remaining motorcycle trail systems on Fed lands in WA are targeted by the W nazis. The Wild Sky, the most recent one in WA, has roads, bridges, and old clear cuts in it. Only one mtn bike trail lost on that one though. It'd really be a shame to see Oakridge lose any bike access.

  38. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by oregon111
    Sedona Arizona has wilderness right next to a very busy highway and shopping centers.

    the eletists only pretend it is about logging. They really are just hardcore mtn bike haters that feel bikes should never leave pavement.

    And... the democrats in congress listen to the eletists, not the mtn bikers.
    Hey, I'm one of those "eletists" (sic), and I love mountain bikes, mountain bikers, and mountain biking.

    Careful with that big, broad brush, buddy

  39. #39
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    Troll ...

    Quote Originally Posted by oregon111
    Sedona Arizona has wilderness right next to a very busy highway and shopping centers.

    the eletists only pretend it is about logging. They really are just hardcore mtn bike haters that feel bikes should never leave pavement.

    And... the democrats in congress listen to the eletists, not the mtn bikers.
    I think somebody joined just to argue their viewpoint ...

    Can you say troll?
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    Quote Originally Posted by LeeMan
    I think somebody joined just to argue their viewpoint ...

    Can you say troll?
    Then waited six months to post?
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    you can see better with your head outside your butt

    I'm not a troll, nor am I a republican.

    The democrats make wilderness because... none of the repubs want wilderness - they just want clearcutting.

    Both parties are bad for mtn biking.

    Indians hate everybody: mtn bikers, surfers, kayakers, rock climbers, etc.

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    speaking of trolls, I wonder how many of you are "armchair" mtn bikers who just read the guidebooks and never ride off pavement?

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    Quote Originally Posted by oregon111
    speaking of trolls, I wonder how many of you are "armchair" mtn bikers who just read the guidebooks and never ride off pavement?
    Pavement? Pfft. I ride on gravel roads.

  44. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by oregon111
    speaking of trolls, I wonder how many of you are "armchair" mtn bikers who just read the guidebooks and never ride off pavement?
    Now you are looking like a troll.
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    where did all the love go?

    If you guys don't start being nicer to me, I will go away. I will. I really will. I mean it.
    Yeah, this time I really mean it...

    Don't know how all this turned into a pissing contest, but I will start over and briefly say:

    that I went down to Oakridge a few days ago and had a really good time.
    Rode some trails I never been on and rode some trails that I hadn't seen in over 15 years.
    the challenges of the trails, the scenery, the cool fall temps, the changing colors and the great camping made me really appreciate what's out there. My annual trip to Oakridge in the fall is one of my favorite things I do all year.

    There see. I can be nice and I can be positive when I try hard enough.
    I had a pretty good day today and I'm not going to let you guys pull me down in the gutter of negative thinking with you.

    Just kidding. Have a nice fall riding season. Might even see some of you out on a trail sometime.

  46. #46
    Obviously Single
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    Maybe?

    Quote Originally Posted by shiggy
    Then waited six months to post?
    Perhaps not ...

    Or ... maybe a really patient one?
    The Lee-Man

    A witty saying proves nothing. -- Voltaire

  47. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by oregon111 View Post
    I thought my "random" thoughts would or could be useful to others.

    As for wilderness, just recently a whole bunch of trails in Mt Hood nat forest was "lost" to wilderness -- no more mtn biking on those trails FOREVER.

    No "bait & switch". I'm not a nutjob tea party republican - just a part-time mtn biker who loves good single track in the fall and puts Oakridge trails at the top of my list.

    oregon111 - out.
    Who do you think is preventing riding in 'wilderness areas'? You think it's 'tea party' people? Your the nut bud... or at the very least an ignoramus. It's Lefty, Liberal, Progressives busy bodies that fu*k up our freedom.

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    Ancient thread revived again...This time with more craptitude...

    Quote Originally Posted by bluejudad View Post
    Who do you think is preventing riding in 'wilderness areas'? You think it's 'tea party' people? Your the nut bud... or at the very least an ignoramus. It's Lefty, Liberal, Progressives busy bodies that fu*k up our freedom.
    Wow...go back to the Yahoo news comment section. This thread was dead and buried for a second time before you had to dig it up again because it mentioned teabaggers...grow up.
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  49. #49
    Nat
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    Quote Originally Posted by nh4cl View Post
    Wow...go back to the Yahoo news comment section. This thread was dead and buried for a second time before you had to dig it up again because it mentioned teabaggers...grow up.
    LOL! So true.

  50. #50
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    Back to Business

    Back to the original point of this post.... I am spending my first summer in oregon and am checking out every spot I can... This is next on the list can anyone recommend some fun rides. Call me an all mountian rider( i like single track with roots and rocks, ups and down, and a good roller or berm as well). 500 miles of trails seems alittle daunting so I would greatly appreciate some recommendations

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    Is there any poison oak along the oakridge trails?

  52. #52
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    Quote Originally Posted by StreamRider View Post
    Is there any poison oak along the oakridge trails?
    Some PO on some trails. Rarely thick and usually can be avoided. Most trails are clear of it. None above ~2800 feet.
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  53. #53
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    Quote Originally Posted by StreamRider View Post
    Is there any poison oak along the oakridge trails?
    Tecnu and forget about it. Tecnu for Poison Oak Rash & Poison Ivy Rash

    No one is more alergic to poision oak than I am. Haven't had it in years thanks to Tecnu. Stuff is the best.

  54. #54
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    Tecnu only works for me if I can get to it in a few hours or less. And I have to deal with contact dermatitis after using it. Add in the work of tecnuing shoes, clothes, bike and the ride isn't worth the hassle of trying to stay rash free.

  55. #55
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    Map of Oakridge

    Anyone have a good trail map of Oakridge, Oregon?

  56. #56
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    The Adventure maps are pretty good if all you need is a general idea and road crossings/etc. It's what I carry when guiding as it will give folks an easy to read idea and is mostly water"proof". Oregon Adventures and the McKenzie MT. Mercantile have them.

    Brock...
    Are the wheels roundish? Ride it.

    Disciples Of Dirt, come ride with us.

  57. #57
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    maps

    Mountain Mercantile in Oakridge sells the large, fold-up Andventure maps with all of hte trails in the area.
    Last edited by nh4cl; 08-23-2012 at 08:35 AM. Reason: Spelling
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    On-Line maps?

    Anyone have some on-line maps? I'd like to do some planning ahead of time vs planning 5 minutes prior to a ride.

  59. #59
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    Purchase this one: Oakridge, Oregon Trail Map, Oregon Adventure Map

    Best maps of the area.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ride_nw View Post
    Pavement? Pfft. I ride on gravel roads.
    That's so hardcore.

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