Hello, friends! Shawn here. I “led” a s24o (sub-24 hour overnight) middle-of-week camping trip during Pedalpalooza. Had so much fun doing it, I want to do more throughout the summer!
Why “midweek”? Well, during the summer months camping spots around Portland are very popular. On weekends many of these places can be full. And only a handful of campgrounds around Portland have hiker-biker sites, sites guaranteed for us two wheeled* travellers. Trying to find a campground that can accommodate a number of cyclists is tricky unless you reserve it in advance (meaning extra fees.)
While many of these campgrounds are full on weekends, they are not during the week. Going to one of these places on a Monday or Tuesday means more open spots and a more quiet, peaceful experience.
Now I realize that some of you folks engage in some sort of activity called “work”. A weeknight camping trip might not always be a feasible option. So that’s why I want to do midweek s24os to destinations close by so one could realistically leave after work (or get off a little early) to go camping, and also get to work on time if they wake up early enough.
Where are we going? Dodge Park, a park where the Sandy and Bull Run Rivers meet, between Gresham and Sandy. This park is owned by the Portland Water Bureau and maintained by Portland Parks and Recreation. (Yes, you can camp in a Portland city park! Just as long as it is not in Portland.) This will be the first time I’ve gone to this campground! This park reintroduced camping last year. Camping spots are $20 a night, plus $5 per bundle of firewood. We’ll divvy up camping spots/firewood appropriately.
When? Tuesday, July 10th. We’ll meet at Cleveland Ave MAX Station in Gresham at 5pm, and roll around 5:30pm. Last Blue Line MAX to reach there in time departs from Rose Qtr at 4:53pm.
Don’t think you can make it to the MAX Station in time? Feel free to leave a comment here or email me at urbanadventureleague ( at ) gmail ( dawt ) com I’ll be posting a suggested route map soon.
What’s the ride like? It’s a short and easy one, about 12 miles in length on moderate traffic roads through moderate terrain. (There is a steep hill right near the entrance to the park, though, as the park sits in the steeply-sided Sandy River Canyon.)
What do I need to bring? Everything you need to be comfortable for one night of camping by bike. This can and will include: sleeping bag, sleeping pad, tent/shelter of some sort, food, extra clothing, and camping kitchen/stove if need be. We will make a stop at Fred Meyer in Gresham (near the start) for food and supplies.
When will we return home? This depends on the wants and needs of the group. If you need to get back to town early you may have to leave on your own. Otherwise I intend to get back near the Cleveland Ave MAX Station late morning/early afternoon.
Other Important Things To Note:
- This is NOT an “official” Cycle Wild trip, rather, an “extra-curricular” trip I am leading. Please note that I/we have never been to this campground before so we don’t really know what it’s like. It’s an exploratory mission to see if this will be suitable for official Cycle Wild trips in the future.
- I/We have never ridden the route before. I’m trying to pick out as low of a traffic route as possible, but I can’t guarantee anything.
- You can swim in the river(s). Bring swimwear if that’s your thing. Can’t guarantee what the water is going to be like.
- While twelve miles categorizes the trip as “short”, this trip is not recommended for beginners. We have a tight timeframe to get to Dodge Park, a little over three hours of time to get from the MAX station to the park before the sun sets around 8:50pm. It is best if you have had some experience with bike camping and distance riding previous to this trip. If you would like to go on a beginner trip, try the Champoeg trip later the same week.
- And if you do care, alcohol is prohibited at Dodge Park, along with any illicit substances. Leave the flask at home on this one.
S240 MIDWEEK BIKE CAMPING to Dodge Park
Tuesday July 10th, 5pm
meet at Cleveland Ave MAX Station, 1000 NE Cleveland Ave, Gresham (near the MAX platform)
will return to Portland in AM/early PM on Wednesday depending on group wants/needs