Too many times, we have buzzed through Madras without realizing...
Westside Tour - Cascades Gravel Scenic Bikeway
Here, There and Everywhere. That’s Where You Are Going.
A gravel loop ride around the west side of Bend, with great variety, nice views, and plenty of options to dash back to the barn if the weather heads south, you run out of time, or you aren’t sure about your capabilities.
Distance: 25 miles
Elevation Gain: 1300 vertical feet
Surface: ~ 50% gravel road / double-track, 5% single-track, 20% paved bike path, 25% paved road
The route is fun, close to town, and a mix of paths and trails with a smidge of roads. You start out in downtown Bend, in the historic Drake Park. You then pass by First Street Rapids and take the River Trail around Awbrey Butte with nice views of the mountains. When the River Trail ends, you will take paved roads up the backside of Awbrey Butte and head out to Shevlin Park. Then you meander through Shevlin Park and then on a few paved roads to reach Skyliners Road and then over to Phil’s Trailhead Parking Area (which is the start of an extensive mountain biking area). Here you are on gravel roads that will loop you to Century Drive. You then catch the bike path back towards town, which winds you into gravel road, paralleling Century Drive. You will drop down into the Old Mill District and follow the Deschutes River, then slice through a historic neighborhood to take you back to Drake Park.
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