It was the videos that made me do it. The promise of alpine views followed by swoopy singletrack through old growth forest. The fast descents with tight switchbacks and rocky bits. No cooking but all the food you need for three square meals a day. And a free beer garden every night with entertainment. This was all it took to convince me to sign up for Mountain Bike Oregon (MBO) for the first time in 2007.
This annual bike festival takes place in the small town of Oakridge, about an 8 hour drive from Vancouver via Eugene, Oregon. MBO was started in 2005 by Randy Dreiling of Oregon Adventures who strongly believed that people in pursuit of the 3 Bâ€™sâ€”bikes, bbq and beerâ€”would come to ride Oakridge singletrack. He was right.
MBO takes place twice per year, attracting 300 riders per event, mostly from the USA but more Canadians (and Muddbunnies!) are showing up.
MBO provides the perfect opportunity to ride the endless miles of trails that surround Oakridge without worrying about trip planning, route finding, etc. Riders are provided with various trail options each day, all guided by the great folks from Disciples of Dirt, and most trails require a shuttle to the trailhead.
Donâ€™t be misled by the word â€˜shuttleâ€™; there is climbing involved on many of Oakridgeâ€™s trails but the views and sweet descents are worth the pedal up.
Oakridge is also one of the few places I know that you get to ride through what feels like the â€˜Ewok Forestâ€™ of Star Wars fame.
I wish I had more photos to share but when youâ€™re riding all dayâ€¦
…then filling the void…
…followed by beer and sharing riding tales…
…some hilarious entertainment…
…and then happily falling asleep to the soft tones of the Willamette River…
…whoâ€™s got time to take pics?
If youâ€™re an intermediate to advanced rider looking for a fun-filled weekend where you can ride to your heartâ€™s content, register now: http://www.mtbikeoregon.com/. MBO sells out quickly (especially the August weekend).
And take note: syrupâ€™s on the table.
Photo credits: all photos by Craig Hunt unless noted otherwise.
Iâ€™ve been road-tripping to mountain-biking destinations since 1998 and enjoy sharing my adventures. I hope this inspires you to explore beyond your backyard. Enjoy the ride!