Saturday, 27 May 2017
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McKenzie River Trail - difficulty rating

"You hear people quack on and on about the McKenzie River Trail and you begin to wonder whether any single trail can really be that great. Then you ride the McKenzie River Trail and you realize that, if anything, folks have been downplaying its greatness. It’s not that the McKenzie is incredibly challenging (though the lava rock sections on the upper end are a handful).

What makes the McKenzie so great is the almost seamless flow of winding singletrack. You bob, duck and weave, hour after hour, along a perfectly buff ribbon of riverside singletrack. No painful climbs or obligatory fire roads here. It’s just one constant blur of mossy, old growth forest. When all is said and done, you’ll have descended about 1,800 feet, been witness to scores of waterfalls, deep blue pools and mountain biking Hallmark moments. It’s a slight downhill, perfect, really, for middle chain ring cruising. But start early, this is still an all-day ride for fit riders."

- Trails TV

 

McKenzie River Trail Difficulty

The Upper Trail is Intermediate to Advanced

The Lower Trail is Beginner to Intermediate

General Information

  • The trail has multiple access points that allow for a great ride no matter what your skill level.
  • This is single track - with logs, roots and rocks.  It is not a wide path.  You will be timing your foot pedals to ensure you don't hit your feet or pedals on these obstacles.
  • There are sections of lava that can be quite fatiguing for many riders - it is also not very forgiving should you fall on it.
  • The trail is NOT a downhill ride - it trends downhill, drops approx 1800 ft and goes up 1000 ft. - bottom line - lots of pedaling.
  • For some the length is also an issue.  You can arrange a shorter ride by using a shuttle service like the one offered by McKenzie River Mountain Resort 541-822-6272

 

This Trail is Awesome for Riding and Walking

Walking - the trails are fairly easy walking - no climbing.  It's not that steep either.

Unless your an avid hiker/walker, pick just part of the trail and discover it in manageable lengths.

McKenzie River Mountain Resort offers hiking shuttles with preset distances of approx 3, 6 and 9 miles that cover the most scenic viewpoints without backtracking.

Shorter hike/bike Ideas:

  • Walk around Clear Lake
  • Clear Lake to Sahalie Falls
  • Sahalie Falls to Koosah Falls - short and stunning.  Park on highway 126 at either falls walk to other falls and back again (No bikes on this side, Bike trail is on other side of River).
  • Clear Lake through Tamolitch Pool to Trail Bridge
  • Trail Bridge up to Tamolitch Pool and back again
  • Trail Bridge to McKenzie Bridge

To make this work you'll either need to go and groups to shuttle or hire a local shuttle service.

At the base of the trail is the Ranger Station - they can provide paper maps and specific directions for other access points to the trail from the Hwy as well as any special weather or safety conditions that might exist.



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