Route Talk With Ken Chichester
Day 3 Dufur to Tygh Valley
For those who thought our previous year’s ride may have been too easy, this is the day for you! Almost everyone (normal folks) who travels to Tygh Valley from Dufur takes the direct route of only 17 miles on Highway 197. This is pretty boring on a bike, especially compared to the route we use. With nearly 7,000 feet of climbing, this day provides spectacular scenery, including agricultural fields, forests, rivers and mountains, and hardly any cars. At least most of the climbing occurs before lunch. The first five or six miles of flat road will loosen the legs before entering the Mt. Hood National Forest and the beginning of a steady uphill climb ending 20 miles from the start. After reaching the first summit of the day, a great descent (only one sharp turn) of more than seven miles leads to Highway 35, the road between Mt. Hood and Hood River. Now is the time for the hill climbers in the group to shine – a six-mile hill to the summit at Bennett Pass (4,647’). After a short downhill run from Bennett Pass, lunch is located at a sno-park on the White River. This is the scene of the large flood a few years ago that required rebuilding Highway 35. After lunch, the route uses another US Forest Service road that begins with nine miles of downhill. At the bottom of the hill, everyone gets to climb the last hill of the day for two-and-a-half miles, before beginning a mostly gentle descent of 25 miles through Wamic to the overnight site at the Tygh Valley Fairgrounds.