Six day a week I spend one half hour pedaling a stationary bike for exercise. During the month of September, my daily routine is disrupted by the gym’s annual closure for maintenance. During this time, I will ride my mountain bike in the great outdoors, provided the weather is acceptable. If you have ever been to coastal Oregon, you know that September frequently offers some of the year’s best weather.
One of my favorite destinations for biking and sightseeing is the Columbia River Gorge and the Historic Columbia River Highway. The highway was built between 1913 and 1922 and was the first planned scenic highway in the United States. Today, only traces of the original narrow and winding two-lane road remain. One five mile stretch, which runs east between Hood River and Mosier is reserved for use by hikers and bicyclists. Biking this portion of the highway offers incredible views of the Columbia River Gorge and the river far below.
The Columbia River looking north to Washington State
The landscape near Mosier is dominated by grass covered slopes and scattered Oak trees
A section of the original highway; even in the day, it must have been unnerving to meet another car head on
My “bike riding buddy” Dale waiting for me at the trail head
This is me hoping we will find a place for lunch that has lots of cold lemonade
Someone recently asked me why I would drive for nearly three hours just to take a ride on my bike. My response was that the scenery alone is worth making the trip. It’s also a chance to spend the day with a friend, get some exercise, and enjoy a beautiful day.