Cycle Oregon XI

Sept. 13-19, 1998

Cycle Oregon XI Tourbook

Day One: Myrtle Creek to Glendale, 45 or 65 miles

Elevation start: 590
Elevation finish: 1,480
Relax. We’re starting slow. The ride opens, meandering along scenic Cow Creek. This first day is designed to ease you into the saddle and warm you up for what lies ahead. If you’re one of those for whom a ride isn’t a ride unless there’s a hill at the end, don’t worry; we’ve found one. There’s an optional 20-mile workout at the end of the day. Whatever your grunt factor, Glendale will be waiting with a big timber welcome.

Day Two: Glendale to Butte Falls, 79 miles

Elevation start: 1,480
Elevation finish: 2,600
Plunging into the heart of the rural landscape, we climb first to mystical Goolaway Gap then travel east, leaving the land of giant firs for a landscape of rolling grasslands and ponderosa pine. Just when things get tough, Mt. McLoughlin makes an inspirational appearance on the horizon. At the end of the road lies Butte Falls, the biggest little town in Oregon. Streets will be closed and hearts will be opened for a welcome you won’t forget.

Day Three: Butte Falls to Diamond Lake, 67 miles

Elevation start: 2,600
Elevation finish: 5,180
Adventure calls. So do the Cascades. It’s time to do some climbing. Our destination is the spectacular jewel of Diamond Lake, majestically nestled between Mount Bailey and Mount Thielson. We’ll pitch our tents by the lake and, best of all, you won’t have to break camp in the morning. That’s because we have a special treat in store for tomorrow.

Day Four: Crater Lake 30, 65, or 100 miles

Elevation start: 5,180
Elevation finish: 5,180
Welcome to the greatest day of bicycling in America, the ride around the rim of one of America’s most spectacular national parks: Crater Lake. It’s just 15 miles from Diamond Lake to the rim of this volcanic wonder, the prelude to a breathtaking 35-mile loop of the lake. Take your time, linger and learn how the lake was formed, visit the historic Crater Lake Lodge, and ponder a second time around the rim. It would be a perfect century ride back to camp.

Day Five: Diamond Lake to Glide, 62 miles

Elevation start: 5,180
Elevation finish: 810
Enough already with this serious stuff. Go freewheeling. Glide is 4,370 feet below Diamond Lake, and downhill all the way. The route ribbons along the banks of the North Umpqua, one of Oregon’s prized and protected wild and scenic rivers. Visit the famous Colliding Rivers, the only place in the world where two rivers meet head-on. Our hosts include veteran and current Cycle Oregon riders, who will trade their saddles for serving spoons tonight.

Day Six: Glide to Elkton, 80 miles

Elevation start: 810
Elevation finish: 230
The hills are alive with the sound of spandex. After a nice little five-mile warm-up to start your engine, remind yourself that you did train all summer. Reap the harvest. Climb a secluded, magical forest trail to a ridgetop that affords breathtaking views of an emerald valley that seems to stretch forever. Then it’s downhill to Elkton and back to the banks of the Umpqua. This is the night for reflection and reminiscing.

Day Seven: Elkton to Myrtle Creek, 75 miles

Elevation start: 230
Elevation finish: 590
One last glorious postcard-perfect ride through Oregon. The route follows a gentle, rolling path along the river, alternating between dense forests and wide, open fields. Today the journey ends, but the memories last forever. There’s a big “welcome home” waiting in Myrtle Creek and a special reward for all those who cross the finish line.