: Painted Hills Scenic Bikeway by Russ Roca

Ride the Oregon Scenic Bikeways

Russ Roca,  Photographer
November 22, 2017 (Updated March 1, 2018)

These aren’t your typical bike journeys. Oregon Scenic Bikeways are official state-designated routes selected and curated by experts, with printable maps, GPS and signage. They are the state’s best road rides, showcasing incredible, only-in-Oregon scenery — along high-desert highways, past geologic wonders, on covered bridges, next to roaring rivers, over snowy mountain passes and through charming communities. Not one Oregon Scenic Bikeway is just like the other, so we don’t blame you for trying to experience them all.

Download the Oregon Scenic Bikeways guide here.

Covered Bridges Scenic Bikeway

Difficulty: Mild | Length: 36 Miles

Willamette Valley

The Covered Bridges Scenic Bikeway is a family-friendly ride from a historic downtown through six historic covered bridges to a picturesque lake.

Best season: Year-round

Crooked River Canyon Scenic Bikeway

Difficulty: Moderate | Length: 37 miles

Central Oregon

Meander through a secluded river canyon and towering basalt cliffs on the Crooked River Canyon Scenic Bikeway.

Best season: Spring through fall

Madras Mountain Views Scenic Bikeway

Difficulty: Moderate | Length: 29 Miles

Central Oregon

The Madras Mountain Views Scenic Bikeway features fragrant fields, a high desert canyon lake and a horizon of snowy peaks.

Best season: Spring through fall

Sherar’s Falls Scenic Bikeway

Difficulty: Moderate | Length: 33 Miles

Central Oregon

Get up close and personal with the Deschutes River on the Sherar’s Falls Scenic Bikeway, a topographically diverse loop in a high desert canyon.

Best season: Spring and fall

Sisters to Smith Rock Scenic Bikeway

Difficulty: Moderate | Length: 37 Miles

Central Oregon

On the Sisters to Smith Rock Scenic Bikeway, ride the high desert, with a different flavor of the Old West at each end.

Best season: Spring through fall

Twin Bridges Scenic Bikeway

Difficulty: Moderate | Length: 36 Miles

Central Oregon

The Twin Bridges Scenic Bikeway showcases the best of Central Oregon, from cities to canyons, all in a few hours of riding.

Best season: Spring through fall

Tualatin Valley Scenic Bikeway

Difficulty: Moderate | Length: 51 Miles

Portland Region

Along the Tualatin Valley Scenic Bikeway, enjoy the fruits of the farmlands and a car-free cruise through the forest.

Best season: Year-round

Willamette Valley Scenic Bikeway

Difficulty: Moderate | Length: 134 Miles

Willamette Valley

Wind your way through the bounty of Oregon on the Willamette Valley Scenic Bikeway, the nation’s first scenic bikeway.

Best season: Year-round

Wild Rivers Coast Scenic Bikeway

Difficulty: Moderate | Length: 61 Miles

Oregon Coast

On the Wild Rivers Coast Scenic Bikeway, ride alongside a Wild and Scenic River, cranberry bogs, towering basalt sea stacks and a historic lighthouse.

Best season: Year-round

Grande Tour Scenic Bikeway

Difficulty: Challenging | Length: 134 Miles

Eastern Oregon

Embark on the Grande Tour Scenic Bikeway and discover a figure-8 of stunning mountain views.

Best season: Spring through fall

Old West Scenic Bikeway

Difficulty: Challenging | Length: 174 Miles

Eastern Oregon

Pedal the Old West Scenic Bikeway through cowboy country to legendary heritage sites and fossil beds.

Best season: Spring and fall

Cascading Rivers Scenic Bikeway

Difficulty: Challenging | Length: 71 Miles

Mt. Hood & Columbia River Gorge

Follow two wild rivers through ancient forests on an up-and-over adventure on the Cascading Rivers Scenic Bikeway.

Best season: Spring through fall

Blue Mountain Century Scenic Bikeway

Difficulty: Extreme | Length: 108 Miles

Eastern Oregon

The Blue Mountain Century Scenic Bikeway is a challenging ride through fertile valleys into deep forest and back again.

Best season: Early summer, fall

Cascade Siskiyou Scenic Bikeway

Difficulty: Extreme | Length: 55 Miles

Southern Oregon

Rise high above Ashland for a bird’s-eye view of Bear Creek Valley along the Cascade Siskiyou Scenic Bikeway.

Best season: Spring through fall

McKenzie Pass Scenic Bikeway

Difficulty: Extreme | Length: 38 miles

Central Oregon

Ride the McKenzie Pass Scenic Bikeway up and over the Cascades through two forests to a surreal volcanic landscape at the top.

Best season: Summer and fall

Oregon Outback Scenic Bikeway

Difficulty: Extreme | Length: 90 miles

Southern Oregon

Pedal through an undiscovered, ruggedly beautiful region on the Oregon Outback Scenic Bikeway.

Best season: Early spring through fall

Painted Hills Scenic Bikeway

Difficulty: Extreme | Length: 161 miles

Eastern Oregon

Geologic splendor and a variety of routes await on the Painted Hills Scenic Bikeway, connecting all three units of the John Day Fossil Beds.

Best season: Late spring through fall

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Safety Tips

Please be aware that the Bikeway information here is advisory only. You assume all risks as far as the quality and accuracy of the information; in other words, you’re agreeing to use it at your own risk. Scenic Bikeway routes include roads with car and truck traffic, and are for cyclists that are comfortable riding in some amount of traffic. Cyclists must obey the rules of the road. For car-free riding, check out the Banks-Vernonia State Trail on the Tualatin Valley Bikeway and the Row River Trail section of the Covered Bridges Bikeway.

A must-know: In Oregon, a bicycle is legally considered a vehicle (and the same laws apply). Riding with the direction of traffic is the law; it’s also the best way to be seen by motorists.

To demonstrate the best riding etiquette and promote good relations with motorists, please ride single-file. Riding side-by-side is legal, but only if doing so does not impede traffic. Be aware that many rural roads are used daily for commerce; there’s a good chance you’ll encounter large trucks carrying oversized loads.

Never forget about drivers’ blind spots — especially when the vehicle is turning right. If you’re going straight at an intersection with stopped vehicles, pull in behind the first stopped vehicle in the lane and wait your turn to go, as if you were a motorist.

All bicycle riders in Oregon under 16 must wear a helmet.

For more information on riding safely and legally in Oregon, visit the Oregon Department of Transportation.

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Ask Oregon

What do we need to know before cycling the Willamette Valley Scenic Bikeway?

Thanks for the question!  I biked the Willamette Valley Scenic Bikeway in 2011 (read my blog from the ride) and it was one of the best trips I’ve ever been on. I rode in the opposite direction you’re planning, finishing the ride at Champoeg State Park.  Champoeg State Park offers RV spaces that you can reserve online….

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