I just made an amazing discovery: a scenic bikeway that goes all the way from Champoeg State Park, maybe 30 miles south of Portland, down to Armitage County Park in Eugene. It’s 132 miles of purportedly well-marked, bike-friendly road, skirting a few cities (Salem, Albany, even someplace called Brownsville that I can’t say I’ve heard of) and several state and county parks.
Anyway, it’s called the Willamette Valley Scenic Bikeway, and Oregon Parks and Rec has lovely maps and information about in on their webpage.
I guess I can’t yet recommend it one way or the other since I haven’t ridden any of it, but I’m really excited to have discovered it, at least in theory. And I’m really excited to give it a try, maybe once it gets a little warmer. Since it’s mostly flat–at least, that’s what Parks and Rec tells me;)–I suspect I could do it in a day, even with having to get down to Champoeg to start with. Then I could stay in Eugene, and bike or Amtrak back up the next day. Or it could be an adventure: split it halfway or more, stay in one or both of the campgrounds along the way.
This kind of thing is exactly what we need in this world: a safe way for bikes to get from one place to another, on a larger scale than just across the city. I’m psyched!