Cycle Oregon XIII

Sept. 9-16, 2000—Paisley to Hood River

Cycle Oregon XIII Tourbook

Day One: Paisley to Silver Lake, 51 or 91.2 miles

Elevation gain: 3,044 (with option)

Opening Scene: The sun rises on an easy day to warm up. Pan along the magnificent mirage of Summer Lake, pause on Winter Ridge towering on the horizon. Linger for lunch at the Wildlife Refuge. It’s a short hop over Picture Rock Pass… look for those amazing Native American petroglyphs. Feeling like a star? Enjoy the extra 40-mile option around Thompson Reservoir in the shade of the Fremont National Forest. Exit scene at Silver Lake. Enjoy an evening of classic country hospitality right there on Main Street.

Day Two: Silver Lake to La Pine, 71.3 or 90.5 miles

Elevation gain: 1,163 (with option)

A double feature day. Ride the short route to La Pine or stretch out with an extra 26 optional miles. Both routes explore Oregon’s awe-inspiring high desert country. Stop for craft service (er, lunch) at Fort Rock, the community. Nearby, at Ft. Rock State park (5 miles round trip) visit one of the most astonishing sites in Oregon, the cave that was home, 9,000 years ago, to the first folks known to have camped beneath this star-spangled sky. Dissolve from scrub brush and sage to groves of Ponderosa Pine. Waiting at the eastern foot of the mighty Cascade Mountains is the community of La Pine.

Day Three: La Pine to Bend, 66.1 miles

Elevation gain: 2,754

Get ready for a dream sequence. The first 40 miles wind through the forest for close-up Cascade views. Break for lunch on the shores of Elk Lake. Yes, that stunning backdrop is real: the snow-clad summits of the Three Sisters, Broken Top and Mt. Bachelor. Today’s hill may be upstaged by the breathtaking beauty of the shore of Sparks Lake. After reaching Mt. Bachelor Ski Resort, take five before coasting to The Inn of the Seventh Mountain in Bend. Relax. We’re spending two nights here. Friends and family might join you and share your big scene.

Day Four: Option day, 0, 70.5 or 103 miles

Elevation gain: 4,950 (with all options)

Sure you can take this day off, enjoy raft trips, go fishing, play golf, take a hike, hit the cappuccino carts… you get the idea. Or you can join the crew for whom first call is 6:30 a.m. and set off on an epic day of cycling.First coast across the heart of glorious Central Oregon and pause for lunch in Sisters. Then, going for some glory, ride the scenic McKenzie River Highway to the summit of the Cascades. Stop to reload at the mysterious Dee Wright Observatory, an “X Files” location bursting from a frozen lava field. Before heading back down to Bend, scope out the 360-degree Oregon panorama… remember to appear really, really modest when you get back to camp.

Day Five: Bend to Antelope, 99.1 miles

Elevation gain: 3,219

Ready for your close-up? Today you are going to pedal a century, but location scouts report it’s a cruise! Start with seven miles downhill followed by a flat ramble out to Smith Rock State Park — home to some of the world’s greatest rock climbers. Wander through the park, feeling part of all this grandeur because The Cycle Oregon Fund donated money to the cause to help preserve and protect this land. Hop back in the saddle and enjoy a leisurely ride to lunch at a shady park in Madras. Then it’s on through Cow Canyon, past the agate beds, along Trout Creek, to historic Antelope, population fewer than 40, where the community plans the biggest little welcome in Cycle Oregon history.

Day Six: Antelope to Dufur, 65.4 miles

Elevation gain: 3,954

Cut to a real ghost town, Shaniko, once a bustling hub of trade. Then, just a mile out of town, revel in the glory of a 20-mile descent along magnificent Bakeoven Road to lunch in Maupin. After the feast, keep rolling along the Deschutes River, trying not to focus too much on all the skinny dippers. Cross at historic Sherars Bridge — the falls here are a famous Native American fishing spot — then gear up for that great climb to the summit above Tygh Valley. From here, Dufur — nestled in the wheat country above the Columbia River — is just nine miles, and 1,300 feet downhill!

Day Seven: Dufur to Hood River, 50 miles

Elevation gain: 1,980

Today’s scene segues to The Dalles, the bustling riverfront town on the banks of the Great River of the West. Climb the Rowena Loops to the overlook and be rewarded by the most incredible view of the Columbia River Gorge. Wow. Then get ready for the big climax of the 2000 Tour — our ride through The Mosier Tunnels on the Historic Columbia river Gorge Scenic Highway. Cycle Oregon will be one of the first groups permitted to travel through these long-sealed tunnels. Then a short downhill glide brings us all to the “Full Sail Finish Celebration” on the banks of the Columbia in Hood River. And that, folks, is a wrap.