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Home Travel Trails Oregon State Parks Adds Two New Scenic Bikeways to Enjoy

Oregon State Parks Adds Two New Scenic Bikeways to Enjoy

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Tualatin Valley and Madras Mountain Views bikeways have been designated as new Scenic Bikeways by the Oregon State Parks and Recreation Commission, bringing to 11 the number of official state Scenic Bikeways.

The commission approved the designation at its May 2013 meeting in Baker City. The Oregon Scenic Bikeways program is the first and only of its kind in the country. Launched in 2005, the program, which now includes more than 790 miles of designated scenic bikeways, is a partnership between Cycle Oregon, Travel Oregon, the Oregon Department of Transportation and OPRD.

tualatinThe Tualatin Valley Scenic Bikeway features the best of the northern Willamette Valley, from friendly downtowns to fertile farmlands and lush natural areas. Set in the heart of Washington County, the Bikeway covers more than 50 miles one-way, and includes the Banks-Vernonia State Trail.

Mostly rural roads comprise 30 miles of the route, while the woodsy, off-road Banks-Vernonia State Trail accounts for 20 miles. Bikeway terrain ranges from plains to rolling hills, with the middle portion of the state trail featuring a climb of about 600 feet.

Riders can enjoy pleasing views of the Coast Range, farms, vineyards, natural areas near quaint downtowns, while the smell of fresh-cut hay or flutter of waterfowl engages other senses. The primary natural feature is the Tualatin River, which is dotted with wetlands and forest stands.

The Madras Mountain Views Scenic Bikeway is a 30-mile loop on rural country roads with Central Oregon volcanic views, pastoral scenery showcasing basalt palisades above the Deschutes and Crooked Rivers and stunning views of the iconic Cascade peaks of Three Sisters, Mt. Jefferson, Mt. Hood and Three Fingered Jack.

The bikeway starts and finishes in downtown Madras, a friendly small town with several wonderful restaurants and hotels. The route takes you to overlooks above Cove Palisades State Park and Lake Billy Chinook. These overlooks are great places for seeing eagles, raptors and deer. This section of the route has almost no traffic.

The route passes through Culver, Metolius and Madras, offering a variety of amenities, giving riders a chance to enjoy the small towns and buy refreshments along the route. The Bikeway is on paved roads with light traffic. This ride is suitable for most recreational cyclists comfortable biking on roads.

Cycling a Growing Travel Favorite

According to a recent independent report from Dean Runyan Associates, bicycle travel is an important contributor to Oregon's economy. Riders generated nearly $400 million in 2012 - supporting 4,630 jobs and representing about 4.4 percent of the direct travel spending in the state.

Regionally, riders contributed $89.1 million into the Portland Metro area, which encompasses the Tualatin Valley Bikeway, and $75.7 million in Central Oregon, where the Madras Mountains Bikeway is located.

All the information a bicyclist needs to plan their ride can be found on
www.RideOregonRide.com including a printable map, accommodations and amenities along the route.

The Oregon Parks and Recreation Department provides and protects outstanding natural, scenic, cultural, historic and recreational sites for enjoyment and education. It served more than 40 million people last year in a system of state parks, historic and natural areas, trails, and other special programs.

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