Does the thought of riding 50 miles fill you with dread? How can you ever ride that far?!? Actually, it’s not nearly as hard as you’d expect – if you take the time to train. Here’s a schedule to get you on track to a summer of bike camping!
Start off easy, with just a 5 mile ride twice a week. For the average person, that’s about 30 minutes of riding, and can fit into an evening without any trouble. After a week or two, bump it up to 3 times a week, and after another week or two, bump it up to 10 miles twice a week, with a longer ride on the weekend. Each week, increase the distance of the weekend ride. Here’s a sample schedule that will get you in shape for the long distances in 3 short months!
- Week One: 5 miles, 2x per week
- Week Two: 5 miles, 3x per week
- Week Three: 10 miles, 2x per week + 15 miles on the weekend
(Barton Park, Milo McIver – from Gresham)
- Week Four: 10 miles, 2x per week + 20 miles on the weekend
(Stub Stewart, Oxbow)
- Week Five: 10 miles, 3x per week + 25 miles on the weekend
(Milo McIver – from Portland)
- Week Six: 10 miles, 3x per week + 30 miles on the weekend
- Week Seven: 10 miles, 2-3x per week, 40 miles on the weekend / 10+ pounds of gear
(Clackamas USFS Campgrounds to Indian Henry)
- Week Eight: 10 miles, 2-3x per week, 40 miles on the weekend / 15+ pounds of gear
- Week Nine: 10 miles, 2-3x per week, 45 miles on the weekend / 20+ pounds of gear
- Week Ten: 10 miles, 2-3x per week, 50 miles on the weekend / 25+ pounds of gear
(Bagby Hot Springs)
- Week Eleven: 10 miles, 2-3x per week, 55 miles on the weekend / 30+ pounds of gear
(Big Bottom, Cape Lookout)
- Week Twelve: 10 miles, 2-3x per week, 60 miles on the weekend / 30+ pounds of gear
Don’t feel obligated to ride this whole schedule, or this agressively – you can take 2-3 weeks (or more) at any level before moving up to the next one. The campsites in parentheses are given to tell you when you’re ready to ride that trip. Before you know it, you’ll be ready for a 35-50 mile ride up the Clackamas River through the beautiful Clackamas Canyon!