Summer is officially here, which means it’s time for both RV owners and cycling enthusiasts to hit the roads. If you happen to be one of the lucky people who has a passion for the RV lifestyle and for cycling Oregon’s highways and byways, then you know that Oregon offers the best of both worlds. Head to Oregon for some of the best RV roadtrips in the nation, in addition to excellent single-track mountain bike trails, scenic byways and urban cycling adventures.
Even our CFO here at Guaranty RV, Ed Morgan, has caught the enthusiasm for cycling in our gorgeous state. He says, “It’s All About the Bike.”
Up until a few years ago, I would have no more envisioned myself writing a blog about bike riding than I would about menopause. As a lifelong runner, I had more than a bit of disdain for those beings wearing funny helmets, shirts with pockets in the back, and those ridiculous padded spandex pants.
But, as my wife and I are visited with increasing regularity by the indignities of getting older, I now feel confident to discuss both subjects. However I will stick to the bike. You see I took up bike riding for the very simple reason that I can no longer run as far, fast or often as I used to and after having lost 40 pounds and gotten back into shape, I am unwilling to go back to what I was even if I can’t run. So I bought a bike.
Bikes today are nothing like the Schwinn Varsity I grew up with, they are lightweight wonders of modern carbon fiber technology, patented wheel sets and spoke patterns, and indexed shifters. They are fast and good looking. Shortly after getting my bike, and the cleated pedals, the special shoes, the gloves, the funny looking helmet, the shirt with the pockets in the back and some ridiculous padded spandex pants I set off with some friends for a 40 mile ride.
I loved it and I have loved it every single mile since then, through the rain, cold, heat, the numb hands and the sore behind, because on every single ride at some point I experience the sensation of effortless riding. I can hear the tires singing on the asphalt, smell the air, feel the temperature and it feels like I could go on forever. I wonder why I waited so long. So get a bike and go for a ride. Now if I could just figure out why my wife throws off her blankets every night. — Ed Morgan
Cycling in Oregon
Oregon is the only state in the nation with a Scenic Bikeways program. This program features routes that have been suggested by locals as some of the most beautiful and rewarding. Each route has been officially reviewed, ridden and adopted. Whether you want to park your RV and take a day trip, or plan for a multi-day cycling adventure, there is a route for everyone, from beginning to advanced riders. Ride Oregon has provided descriptions and detailed maps for all the Scenic Bikeways, or you can download the pdf or order a print copy of the Oregon Scenic Bikeways Guide.
Travel Oregon also has excellent information about cycling in our beautiful state. Here you’ll find information about Portland’s Bike and Brew Tour, where participants take a bike tour of a variety of craft-beer makers on the city’s east side, and you can learn about riding the Old West Scenic Bikeway, the McKenzie River Trail, and so much more.
And if you’re ready for the cycling in Oregon extravaganza, check out Cycle Oregon. Each year, they host a unique event called The Week Ride—a seven-day excursion through a different part of Oregon. As they say, “The best way to sum up Cycle Oregon might be through the honorary title riders have bestowed upon it: The Best Bike Ride in America.” It’s not too late to participate in the 2014 The Week Ride, which will take place September 6 – 13. This year, you can join more than 2000 other cyclists as you tour the beauty of the Columbia Gorge via rural routes, alongside crystalline rivers and through the ancient forests Oregon is so proud of. Your registration includes your campsite, food, hot showers, live entertainment and a fully supported bike route. If you’re not quite ready for The Week Ride, you can still get on next year’s waiting list for The Weekend Ride.
Get Your RV Bicycle-Ready
Whether you’re the only cycling enthusiast in your family, or you’ve got a whole passel of bikes to haul, you’re going to need a way to carry them. Maybe you have a toy hauler, in which case you’re set to hit the road with your bikes in safe storage. Otherwise, you’ll need a bike carrier. There are a variety of sizes and styles to choose from. Most carriers can safely carry one to three bikes, but if you need more bike space, you can purchase models that will accommodate up to five. Depending on your needs, there are bumper mount, hitch mount and ladder mount models. There are also platform models in case you want the option to use a carrier for other camping gear. To read more about the various options and which one is ideal for your needs, see our previous blog about Choosing an RV Bike Carrier.
At Guaranty RV, we stock a wide variety of bike carriers that are ideally suited for whatever RV you own, whether you’re driving a motorhome, towing a trailer or fifth wheel, or vacationing in a truck camper or pop-up camper. If you’re not sure what’s right for you, give us a call or stop by the Guaranty RV Travel Center; our service professionals are always happy to help you. Cycle on!
Photo: Gabriel Amadeus