One of the cabins at Battle Ground Lake.

Battle Ground Lake Cabin Camping: 8-9 Feb 2014

For our February overnight camping trip, we’ll be traversing the wilds of Clark County, Washington to head to the cabins at Battle Ground Lake State Park!

The ride will leave Portland on Saturday, February 8th. We’ll ride about 25 miles (40 km) to Battle Ground Lake, using a mix of shoulderless rural roads with low traffic, bike lanes, bike routes through residential neighborhoods, and bike paths. There will be a few small hills that can be steep for short distances, but nothing major. Cycle Wild classifies this as an “Easy” route, but remember there are a couple hills and some busy stretches.

The route from Cascades MAX to Battle Ground Lake:

The route back:

We’ll be “camping” in Battle Ground Lake’s rustic cabins! Cabins feature electric light, heat, and power outlets. Each cabin sleeps five, three in the bunk bed (one on the top, two on the bottom bunk) and two on the foldout futon. (Couples get priority, but singles may end up sharing a bed depending on how it all works out.) All you need to bring is bedding: sleeping bag and “pillow”. If you choose to cook, you’ll need to bring your own stove. (Please note: cooking is NOT allowed in the cabin, but you can cook on the picnic table in front of the cabin.)
There are showers. As with any Washington State Park campgrounds that has a shower, they require quarters. Bring about $2.50 in quarters with you if you like long showers.
Meet at Cascade Station MAX Stop (Red Line) at 10am Saturday morning (Feb 8). We leave the MAX station at 10:30am. Estimated riding time to the park is 3 hours, plus a 30-45 minute stop at Safeway in east Vancouver to grab food for the trip. (There is also other restaurant options in the Safeway plaza, including a Burgerville.)

We’ll return to Portland during the day on Sunday February 10. It’s become customary for some riders to stop in the town of Battle Ground and have lunch at the Laurelwood Brewery. 

If you want to come on this trip, please READ CAREFULLY:

  • We have reserved all four cabins. At five people per cabin, this means the maximum attendance for the trip is twenty (20) people. We will have a waiting list if we go over.
  • We are “charging” up front for this trip. Please keep in mind the fees collected are towards the cost of cabin plus reservation and processing fees. Cycle Wild is NOT charging to make a profit.
  • The fee per person will be $20, plus the $1.49 service fee for Eventbrite. Please note this is an estimation, the per person fee can be as low as $16. If it is, we will refund the difference at the campground. You can waive this refund (if there is one), though you can’t get the $1.49 Eventbrite fee refunded. Any waived refund funds count as a donation to Cycle Wild’s Reservation Fund.
  • Please notify the organizer ASAP if you need to cancel. If there is anyone on the waiting list, they will be contacted in the order they signed up and will be given 48 hours to pay for a spot on the trip. After the 48 hours the open spot will go to the next person on the list. If no one on the waiting list takes your spot, you must find another person to take your place in order to get refunded.
  • If you cancel and there is no waiting list, you must find another person to take your place in order to get refunded.
  • No refunds for no shows.
Please sign up via Eventbrite. You must pay in full to sign up. You can ask us questions via the comments below, but don’t ask us to “save you a spot”.

UPDATE 7 Jan 2014: Well, that was fast. Battle Ground Lake is FULL! In just a day we filled up the twenty available spots.

If you are still interested in going, despair not! There is a WAITING LIST on our Eventbrite page.

Please sign up on the waiting list if you are interested. If you sign up for the waiting list and a spot becomes available due to a cancellation, you will be notified and will have 48 hours to register and pay to secure a spot.

Matt Picio.

An open letter from Matt Picio, co-founder of Cycle Wild

Hi all,

This is a bit of a bittersweet announcement, but after 5 years at the helm of Cycle Wild, I’ve decided to step down. Officially as of December 15th, I resigned as President and board member of Cycle Wild. This decision was made with a lot of forethought, and with the knowledge and consent of the board. Erinne Goodell is the interim President until the next board meeting is held and a new President elected by the board.

I’m sure some of you would like to know why I’m leaving. There are many reasons – work constraints, a wedding coming up, and less time to commit to the cause are the main ones, but also because the current board has a lot of great ideas to improve the organization, and my stepping down frees the board to make those decisions and improvements without having to worry about what I would do. Cycle Wild as an organization is growing and evolving, and needs the ideas and work to make that happen – and the best thing founder can do is know when it’s time to step aside and let others work. That time is now, and I have every confidence that Cycle Wild will continue to be an awesome organization.

I’m proud of what we’ve accomplished in the five years we’ve been doing this. Cycle Wild has introduced more than 200 people to bike camping on more than 50 individual camping trips. Cycle Wild has successfully made camping by bike accessible to everyone, and as inclusive as possible as well as a friendly environment for families, people of all ages and skill levels, and for absolute beginners to the thrill of hauling everything out to the woods on one’s bicycle. We’ve successfully lobbied for bike improvements to state parks, worked with local, state and federal agencies to promote and maintain access to bike camping, and given input to stakeholder groups, agencies, and local communities on how to build better bike facilities, promote bicycle tourism, and make camping by bike more convenient, more available, and more accessible.

The current board: Co-founder Tomas Quinones, acting President Erinne Goodell, Lillian Karabaic, Ed Groth, and Shawn Granton are all community bike rockstars with years of biking and camping experience who will propel Cycle Wild forward and continue and improve on this legacy. They’ve been major drivers in our previous success, and I’m confident that they’ll come up with awesome activities and programs that I never could.

Thanks for a great ride – I will still see many of you on those Cycle Wild events which my schedule allows me to attend, and at other events in the bike community. Also, a little bird has told me that there will be an upcoming Happy Hour at Velocult which you should all consider attending. Thanks so much for giving me the opportunity to encourage you all to go camping by bike!

Best regards,
-Matt Picio

Cycle Wild is attending an upcoming workshop on bicycle touring for East Multnomah County, and we’d love your opinion!

The Columbia Gorge as viewed from Women’s Forum.

The Gresham Area Chamber of Commerce in conjunction with Travel Oregon is hosting a “studio workshop” regarding bicycle touring in the eastside of Multnomah County. This area is the gateway to the beautiful Columbia River Gorge and they are looking at ways to make it even better! And they’ve asked Cycle Wild to attend.

The two public workshops will be on Wednesday November 13 (seven hours) at Troutale’s Edgefield McMenamins (this is the one I’ll be attending) and on Thursday November 14 ( four hours) at the Corbett Fire House. Can’t attend but have ideas and opinions about riding in east Multnomah County? Feel free to let us know. Either comment on this post of email me at

Cancelled: Clackamas Camping: October 12-13

CWClackThis event has been cancelled due to weather and lack of participation.  SORRY!  Keep checking the site for our winter cabin/yurt camping trips, otherwise we’ll see you in the spring!

It’s time again for bike camping, and we’re headed up the Clackamas River for some dispersed camping!  (meaning there may not be facilities)

Registration Link (free event):


When: Saturday/Sunday October 12-13 (one night, out and back)
Departure time: 9am (seriously)
Departure Location: Cleveland Avenue MAX Station (Blue line – End of line in Gresham)
Difficulty: Moderate/Advanced (~50 miles, some hills)
Distance: 45 miles (from Gresham MAX)


We are departing from the Cleveland Avenue MAX Station in Gresham – at the east end of the BLUE Line MAX.  MAX fare is $2.50.  MAX does not accept cargo bikes, tandems, recumbents, or trailers. (or any bike other than the “standard” size which can fit on the hooks)

If you’d rather ride a bike from Portland to Gresham instead of taking MAX, here are our suggested routes from the inner east side to the Cleveland Avenue MAX station in Gresham: (via the Springwater Corridor – longer, 19 miles) (via surface streets – shorter, 14 miles)

Site / Trip Info:

We will be camping near the Ripplebrook Guard Station (which has a camp store which is open on weekends) which has a vault toilet.  The camp store has limited hours, and closes early in the off-season.  The camp store sells firewood, so we’re going to try to leave early enough to get there before they close and purchase firewood for the night.

If you have bungies, bring a couple – we’ll strap the firewood bundles to the bikes to haul the final 1/2 mile to our campsites.

We will be camping in a campground which is closed for the season.  Mount Hood forest regs permit camping in developed sites outside of the camping season, so this is completely legal.  (See Long Range Forest Plan – LRMP – for the Mount Hood National Forest, page FOUR-187)

Space is not an issue on this trip.  Depending on whether the concessionaire has shut off services, there may or may not be bathrooms (vault toilets), toilet paper, or water on-site.  You should bring a roll of toilet paper, and be prepared to possibly travel 1/2 mile back to Ripplebrook Guard Station to use the vault toilet there.

Addtional Info:

Cycle Wild is “no drop”, meaning there will always be a ride marshall at the back of the ride ensuring that no one is left behind without someone to help get them to the destination site.

Minimum gear – you should have a tent (or hammock, bivvy sack, etc), sleeping bag, warm clothes, rain gear, food (and whatever you need to prepare it), something to store at least 2L of water, a patch kit, frame pump, flashlight/headlamp, and emergency money.

Food – we will stop at the Estacada Thriftway.  They have limited organic/vegan/GF options, so if you have dietary restrictions, you might want to bring your food from Portland.  Otherwise, shopping in Estacada means 17 fewer miles to carry the weight of your food.  Estacada also has a few restaurants to get lunch or to buy prepared food to eat later.  While there are likely to be a number of camp stoves on this ride, don’t count on others, or on there being a fire – plan accordingly.

Weather – this being the Pacific Northwest, you can expect rain, and cold weather.  Highs are likely to be in the 50s or low 60s, lows are likely to be around 40 degrees, possibly colder.  If you have a sleeping bag rated at 40, bring warm clothes to sleep in, or consider investing in a liner or a warmer bag.  Dress for the weather, and don’t forget good protection for hands and feet!

Road etiquette – there is a fair amount of riding on a busy highway (OR-224).  Most of this road has a wide shoulder.  In the National Forest, the shoulder is really only wide enough for one rider, and riding single-file is strongly encouraged.  We point out/announce road hazards and adhere to basic cycling road etiquette.  If there is a conflict with motorists, local citizens, or others, let the ride leader handle and de-escalate the conflict.  Remember, your actions on the ride don’t only affect your safety, but that of the group.  If you aren’t willing to abide by these guidelines, then please don’t attend this event – we’ll be happy to provide you with copies of our maps/cuesheets for you to plan your own trip to this destination.

Have fun!  In addition to getting people camping, Cycle Wild is all about being social, and enjoying the experience.  We’ve worked hard to provide a safe, fun, welcoming environment for both new and experienced bike campers, and we want to to have a fun, safe, relaxing and inviting experience.  We’re very happy to have you along!

About Cycle Wild:

Cycle Wild reconnects people with nature via the bicycle.  Founded in 2008, Cycle Wild has led over 200 people to discover camping by bicycle, and to get out of the urban environment and back amidst nature under their own power.  Learn more about Cycle Wild at


New Camping Resource –


Oregon Campgrounds is a new website allowing folks to search for campgrounds within the state of Oregon based on filterable criteria.  In many ways, it’s similar to what I wanted to do with our Campground Map, but with more advertising than we would have.

The site is very well done, with listings covering a large range of parks, a large range of amenities, maps, and a consistent and well-thought out layout.  I think this is probably the best resource out there for finding campsites in the state of Oregon, and when paired with Travel Oregon’s Ride Oregon Ride website, there are some great options for finding routes to many of these parks.

Unfortunately, the site has some minor issues.  It doesn’t show hiker/biker as a “Camping Types” option, it’s missing a number of parks (Sisters City Park was one at the time this was initially posted), and there is no option to display a larger map than the fixed site size displays.  None of this is critical, however – it’s icing, not the cake.  Oregon Campgrounds gets the Cycle Wild seal of approval.



Panther Creek bike camping trip: Aug 10-11

Panther Creek Falls. Photo by flickr user Ben Grewell.

Hello, Friends! Please join us on Cycle Wild’s next overnight bicycle camping excursion to Panther Creek campground in Gifford Pinchot National Forest (Skamania County, WA) on Saturday August 10 and Sunday August 11!

We will meet at 7:00 at a location on NE Sandy Blvd near 82nd Ave on Saturday August 10 and return to Portland sometime in the late afternoon/early evening of Sunday August 11th. The approximate distance of this trip is 60 miles (100 km) one-way. Due to the length of trip, we consider it a challenging trip. Riders should have previous experience with distance riding and bike camping.

Campsites have been reserved in advance by the fabulous Matt Picio, we’re expecting it to work out to about $10 per person, please either bring a check made out to Matt Picio or cash.

Our route will head up the Oregon side of the Columbia River Gorge and then cross the river at Bridge of the Gods in Cascade Locks.

Every rider should also bring a copy of the Columbia Gorge Bike Map, available online from this link. Cue sheets will be given from Bridge of the Gods. You may also find a copy of the Bike There! map useful for navigating portland if you aren’t familiar with the routes to Troutdale. We will be taking Marine Drive.

Panther Creek campground is a lovely destination in itself, with stunning views on the way there. Just 12 miles from Walking Man Brew Pub, I mean Stevenson, and 8 miles north of Carson. The campground is heavily wooded, offering lots of privacy. There is a great network of hiking trails throughout the campground, so it’s worth bringing your sneakers on this tour. And, just up the road 5 miles is a hidden, dramatically beautiful waterfall.
More information here.

Bike Camping is CANCELLED for June 22-23

I regret to inform everyone that the Beginners’ Bike Camping event scheduled for Stub Stewart on June 22-23 has been cancelled.

I (Matt) injured my knee and am not able to ride for at least 2 weeks.  After an exhaustive search of potential ride leaders, we were unable to find someone who was able to lead the ride – all of our normal ride leaders and alternates are otherwise committed this weekend.

We hope to have another beginner-friendly ride later this year, and will announce it on the website when a date and destination have been selected.

CANCELLED: Beginner’s Bike Camping at Stub Stewart State Park


Registration is up!  

We’d like to invite you to join Cycle Wild for an introduction to Bike Camping – Pedalpalooza Edition!

Stub Stewart State Park

This trip will be a 23.1 mile one-way trip from Hillsboro to Stub Stewart State Park on the beautiful Banks-Vernonia Trail.  It’s a beautiful ride on low-traffic streets through idyllic farms and fields for 11 miles to Banks, and then 12 miles along the car-free Banks-Vernonia Trail through farms, fields and forest.


Please note that there is 1/4 mile gravel trail to the actual campsites.

What Should I Bring?

We’re camping in the tent area.  We don’t expect there will be rain, but this being Oregon, you’ll want some rain gear just in case.  You should have a tent, or some other means of shelter.  You should have a sleeping bag (and if you want comfort, something to put under it like a camp pad) and a change of clothes.

If you want to take a shower at the park, you should bring a towel and anything else you need (soap, shampoo) to be comfortable with that.  Shower facilities are free and located 3/4 mile away from our sites in the main campground.

You should bring food for dinner, and something for breakfast the next morning.  There is a full-service grocery at the halfway point which we will stop at.  Most people buy their food there.  There’s also a Subway and other restaurants in the same strip mall in Banks which serve prepared food.  We will have a campfire in camp that is suitable for roasting hot dogs or other critters on a stick, but not really set up for cooking with pots & pans.  It’s likely that someone there might be able to loan you a camp stove if you need it.

How Much Does This Cost?

Cycle Wild isn’t charging anyone for this trip, but the campground *does* charge $10 per site, and for firewood.  We’ll have 5 sites, and the group will pay the park and split costs.  You can expect to be paying the park about $5-$10 per person for this trip, plus whatever you spend on groceries/restaurants.  Trimet tickets to Gresham are another $2.50 each way, so if you’re budgeting, figure $15-$20 plus food.

Where can I Find Out More?

Keep checking Cycle Wild’s website – as the event nears for weather, last-minute details, etc. If you have specific questions about what to bring, where to go, etc. email “Matt” dot “Picio” @

When Does the Ride Leave?

We meet at 10am sharp on Saturday, June 22nd.  We’re meeting at the Starbucks on Main St, a block and a half EAST of the MAX station (Hatfield Government Center, at the end of the BLUE LINE)

Midweek Camping during Pedalpalooza: Oxbow Park, Monday June 24

bikecampingathorsethieflakeblackwhiteHello folks! Here is the first of hopefully a few mid-week camping trips I hope to pull off this year. It’s to Oxbow Park on the Sandy River on Monday June 24th. I’m limiting the trip to 12 people for now but may open it up to more if interest is there. This ride is ideal for those of us who don’t have a typical Mon-Fri 9-5 schedule, but the short distance of the ride (around 10 miles) means that even those that do work “regular hours” could make it out after work on Monday and get into work on/near time on Tuesday. To note: I don’t need to be back to Portland until later afternoon, but Andy (who is also going )will be heading up an early departure.

Here’s the deets:

Monday June 24
TBA (Meeting at a Gresham MAX stop, you will get full details when you register)
6:00pm meetup, Depart MAX at 6:30pm, return to PDX late morning
Whether you’re “funemployed” or can get off work a little early, a quick little weekday camping excursion is a lot of fun. A 10 mile ride (approx.) from the MAX in Gresham to Oxbow on the Sandy. Moderate traffic/terrain. We should get there before dark, but remember bike lights. You can probably make it to work on time Tuesday! Campsites $22/night, divvied up appropriately. Bring all the things you would need for an overnight camping trip. Previous bike camping experience recommended. Grocery stop in Gresham.
Limited to 12 people, register here:

PLEASE NOTE: This is NOT an official Cycle Wild trip.

July 4th Trip Cancelled

Hi all,

Sometimes life interferes with plans and schedules, and thanks to numerous conflicting events, we have no ride leaders to devote to the Independence Day weekend trip for a mini-Mount Hood tour.  There are a few additional ride leaders besides the board members who could potentially lead that trip, but every trip requires a certain amount of coordination, logistics, messaging, maps, etc – for the larger holiday trips, that can add up to a lot of work, and while it’s certainly possible to do a “down-n-dirty” low-planning trip, our signature weekends (Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day) tend to require more work.  We’d rather do it right or not do it at all, and with Pedalpalooza about to begin and additional responsibilities of all the board members outside of Cycle Wild, we’ve decided to cancel the Independence Day trip this year.

If you were planning to go on this trip, you have our apologies.  We hope that you’ll attempt your own trip that weekend, or partake in the many summer events going on in and around Portland that week.  We’d love to see you on a future Cycle Wild trip this year, and wish you a happy Independence Day holiday!

reconnecting people with nature via the bicycle