New Zealand Bound

Posted February 7, 2007 by portlandor
Categories: Uncategorized

I will be gone February 8-25 traveling to the far-off land of New Zealand. The Kiwi trip is a vacation so I will be doing plenty of biking, tramping (hiking in Kiwi), kayaking, camping and general sightseeing (see “TUI” Active New Zealand). I will try to make blog posts from “Godzone” as a I come across Internet cafes. Expect a full blog report with photos when I return.

In the meantime…Ride on->

Oh yea, be sure to register for The Alice Awards & Auction sponored by the BTA. It is sure to be great fun!

Super Bowl Sunday

Posted February 5, 2007 by portlandor
Categories: Uncategorized

I discovered that Super Bowl Sunday is a great day to ride a bike in Portland. Not much car traffic on the roads at all. I did a respectable 28 mile ride on this unseasonably warm 55 degree day. My travels took me from the Garden Home area, through Hillsdale, past OHSU, downtown, over the Hawthorne bridge to the east side, and followed the bike path to Oaks Park. The return trip was nearly identical except that I crossed the Willamette River over the Steel bridge instead of the Hawthorne. I even made it home in time to watch the game!

Ride on ->

Great Commute Week

Posted February 4, 2007 by portlandor
Categories: Uncategorized

The past week (Jan 29 – Feb 2) was a great week to commute to work. The weather was sunny with the temperature ranging between 33-45 degrees. I made the 15 mile roundtrip commute four times during the week.

Ride on ->

Non-Cycling Fun

Posted January 29, 2007 by portlandor
Categories: Uncategorized

Every once in a while even the most avid cyclist needs to hop off their wheels and take to their feet. That is exactly what I did today. It was a bright, sunny and chilly day in the greater Portland area – including the Columbia River Gorge.

We did an eight mile hiking loop that started at Wakeena Falls and the steep set of switch-backs that await you. Once you plateau above Wakeena Falls the hike follows a beautiful stream and a host of gorgeous waterfalls.

Along the way we met another kindred soul of a hiker. His name was Dick. A very nice chap who was really into hiking, talking and telling us all about the baby girl from China that he and his wife recently adopted. Dick showed us a new route that had us gain more elevation but were eventually rewarded with an outstanding view of the gorge from “Devils Point.”

From there we headed toward Larch Mountain and to find a sunny spot to eat lunch. Our new friend Dick decided to hang with us to grab a bite to eat. After a hardy lunch of PBJ sandwiches, all three of us started the decent down toward Multnomah Falls and the end of our hike. The trail and bridge immediately underneath Multnomah Falls were terribly icy and made for a fun “ride” down the last quarter mile.

Once reaching our resepective cars, we traded email addresses with our new hiking friend. It was a very good (non-cycling) day – great weather, beautiful scenery, new friend and good training hike to prepare for our upcoming New Zealand adventure.

Tomorrow it’s back on the bike!  Ride on ->

Amsterdam Daydream

Posted January 26, 2007 by portlandor
Categories: Uncategorized

During my cycling commute to work this morning, my thoughts turned to Amsterdam. What provoked this you might ask? The daydream inducing catalyst actually bolted from the ear-buds of my iPod. It was the song Amsterdam by Griffin House. That very distinctive song elicited vivid memories of my visit to Amsterdam during the summer of 2005.


As has been previously reported on many Portland blogs, Amsterdam is the foremost cycling city in the world. I was fortunate enough to witness this firsthand. Many people believe that Portland should aspire to the cycling standards of Amsterdam. Count me as one of those people.

There are certainly many signs that Portland could become “Little Amsterdam” instead of “Little Beirut.” Take for example the commitment by the City to achieve Platinum status as bestowed by the League of American Bicyclists, the great advocacy work of the Bicycle Transportation Alliance (BTA), and the beginning of a Dutch bike invasion – like jog&olif and others.

Auto Planter

We have a long way to go before we approach the standards of cycling in Amsterdam, but Portland is a unique place, and we have a good start. One measure of when we have achieved cycling parity with Amsterdam is when a scene like the one to the left appears in Portland. This was a creative way for one Amsterdam resident to make use of a car that was apparently no longer needed.

Ride on ->

Lance & LiveStrong Back to Portland in 2007!

Posted January 23, 2007 by portlandor
Categories: Uncategorized

As a rider in the past two Lance Armstrong LiveStrong Challenges, I received advanced notification that the event will be back in Portland this year.

“We’ll kick off this year’s Challenge in Philadelphia, PA., Aug.
25-26, before heading to Portland, Ore., on Sept. 29-30.
The events culminate with a joint Challenge and Ride for
the Roses celebration in Austin, Texas, Oct. 12-14.”

I rode the 40 mile route in 2005 and did the 75 mile route in 2006.  It appears that LiveStrong has scaled back the number of cities to three in 2007 instead of last year’s five – dropping Denver and SoCal.

“First, by reducing the number of locations this year, our limited
staff can focus resources on providing you with an event that
leaves you transformed – energized, inspired and empowered
to make a difference. We purposely chose geographic locations
that are easily accessible from across the country.”

In 2006 all riders were required to submit a $50 registration fee and then raise a minimum of $500. There are changes to the fund-raising requirements in 2007 as well.

“As before, all Challenge participants pay a one-time $50
event registration fee. This year we’ve reduced the minimum
fundraising level for cyclists to just $250 and eliminated it
altogether for walkers and runners.

Finally, what would a LiveStrong ride be without Lance…?

“Lance is coming! He was so inspired by your hard work
and commitment in 2006 that he doesn’t want to miss out.
He’s making plans to participate in each Challenge city.”

As a veteran of two LiveStrong rides, I certainly can testify that…
It’s Not About the Bike.”

 Ride on ->

Winter Magic on Sauvie Island

Posted January 21, 2007 by portlandor
Categories: Uncategorized

What a glorious morning it was today biking on Sauvie Island. I often ride Sauvie Island but never before in the winter. In many ways the island is a cycling haven. Lots of flat country roads with little traffic and great scenery. The weather this morning ranged between a chilly 39-45 degrees.

At 26,000 acres, Sauvie Island is the largest island along the Columbia River. It lies about 10 miles west of downtown Portland, between the Columbia River to the east, the Multnomah Channel to the west, and the Willamette River to the south.

Today was especially impressive as the island was magically alive with waterfowl.  Both Snow geese and Canada geese by the thousands darkened the sky and filled the air with a surreal chorus of “honking” sounds.  We spotted well known Portland naturalist Mike Houck giving an impromptu lecture at one of the islands many wildlife viewing stations.

After spending a couple of hours and cycling 35 miles around the island, I left feeling that this is a special place and the people of Portland are very lucky to have it so nearby.