Cycle Oregon XV
Sept. 7-14, 2002—Nyssa to Florence
Day One: Nyssa to Ironside, 72 miles
Elevation start: 2,180
Saddle up in Nyssa, a rip snortin’ cowboy town just this side of Idaho. Dip your wheels in the mighty Snake then follow the wagon tracks over Keeney Pass. A hundred years ago, a family passing this way decided they’d found all the paradise they needed. Camp out on their cattle ranch in Ironside.Yee Haw!
Day Two: Ironside to John Day, 75 miles
Elevation start: 3,710
Deer and antelope still play in the wide open spaces as we wind our way through the stunning Strawberry Mt. Wilderness. Fabulous! More elk than people here! At day’s end, kickback in John Day – the Paris of Grant County.Bright lights. Big little city.
Day Three: John Day to Mitchell, 72 or 109 miles
Elevation start: 3,084
Dude, where’s my camera? Grab some shots of the spectacular Painted Hills. This high and dry country once was home to camels and flamingoes. Lunch at Sheep Rock, an incredible desert oasis. Then on to Mitchell for the night. Tiny spot. Sorry, no Starbucks. But it does have a bear living on Main Street! Later.
Day Four: Mitchell to Sisters, 98 miles
Elevation start: 2,344
Yes, those are the Cascades! Pretty snow, eh? But first, it’s Central Oregon for us. Goodbye, land of saddle and sage. Hello, fun country. We bed down in Sisters the postcard-perfect town at the foot of those mountains we’ve been admiring. See the sun set over where we head tomorrow.
Day Five: Sisters Option Day, 0 or 20 or 50 miles
Elevation start: 3,200
Hey Lazybones, Sleep in! Relax. Today is just for fun.
Spend time poking around coffee shops and antique stores. Or saddle up for a ride out to the swimming hole. Try fly fishing, or white-water rafting. Lots to do . . . and all day to do it. Details to follow.ZZZZZ.
Day Six: Sisters to Coburg, 99 miles
Elevation start: 3,200
Ready? Let’s roll. Just six miles from the edge of Sisters to the summit. Linger at the lava beds. Check out the stunning view. Then it’s into the Ancient Forest, downhill all the way along the McKenzie River to the Willamette Valley. Remember to stop in Coburg. It’s a perfect little pioneer town. And it’s where we party tonight.
Day Seven: Coburg to Florence, 85 miles
Elevation start: 389
Smell the salt in the air? Today, we leave farmland behind and head west to the big finish. The final day is a nice little ride through the Coast Range to idyllic Triangle Lake, then downhill again all the way to the beach. Be sure to dip your wheel in the ocean before diving into the Florence Finish Line Festival. Fun, fun, fun!
p.s. Day 8 – 9 – 10 – etc. The bike ride is over but take some time, stay a while in rural Oregon, it might be a long time before you get back again.
Compiled & contributed by: www.CyclingSite.com