McKenzie Pass

A gorgeous road bike ride on EPIC proportions!!

This is a bucket list ride – make sure you experience one of Oregon’s best!  

Hwy 242 - McKenzie Pass

McKenzie Bridge to Sisters


38 mi
2-4 hours
4,000 ft

Sisters to McKenzie Bridge


38 mi
2-4 hours
2,100 ft
Trans Alps Adventure

McKenzie Pass News

6/2/24 – Hwy 242 is Closed to bikes and cars for a repaving project.

The earliest possible opening day each year is the third Monday in June.

The work area is from Dee Wright Observatory to Sisters, Oregon and  promises to improve the roadway, improve bathrooms at Dee Wright and possibly add or improve bike lanes in this stretch.

“Remember that when this road is closed, it is closed to everyone. This is especially important to remember this year as crews work behind the closed gates of OR 242 to make this route smoother and safer for everyone. Do not pass the closed gates, and never enter a work zone. Since crews will be working in a closed area, they may work any day of the week and heavy equipment will be on the road through the duration of the project.”

“The best side of the ride is the McKenzie side” the shuttle helps you get it all!

Shuttles are Available when opened – Scroll down for Options

New shuttle times and pickup spots in Sisters and McKenzie Bridge.  Shuttles are scheduled until the road opens to cars, after that date, shuttles are scheduled by request 541-822-6272

Condition Reports are rider generated and conditions may change.  ODOT does not provide updates on road conditions. (This website cannot guarantee the accuracy of condition reports – to our best knowledge they are true when published.)

If you have better info than what is posted here, please update us.  Email us your updates and any photos or share them on the McKenzie Pass Facebook page.

Recent New
Basic Ride Details

Map and Cue Sheet

Best Time To Ride

May- 3rd Monday in June*
(No cars)

Also great through August

Ride Options

Ride from Sisters to McKenzie Bridge 

Ride from McKenzie Bridge to Sisters 

Ride from Sisters to Top and back

Ride from Hwy 126 to Top and Back 

Road Condition

Road is closed in winter due to Snow

Usually open to Bike’s only from May to 3rd Monday in June. 

Open to cars from then until snow closes road – usually October

April 27, 2023 3:09 am

McKenzie Pass Scenic Bikeway

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  • Distance Instructions
  • Distance 24 miles
  • Time 3 h 0 min
  • Speed 10 mph
  • Min altitude 1644 ft
  • Peak 5354 ft
  • Climb 2805 ft
  • Descent 4314 ft
Ride Essentials
Explore the Central Oregon Cascade Mountains

Points of Interest

Things You Don’t Want to Miss

Trail Highlights

Scenery – Make sure you take time to stop at Proxy Falls. The 2 falls are gorgeous.  You will need to stash bikes in the woods or lock bikes up for this 1.1 mile hike.   

If that’s not possible, come back after the ride.

Food – McKenzie Station Pub (in McKenzie Bridge) has an incredible Beef Brisket Burger, which may be the best burger you have ever had.  Cold beer on tap too!  

After a big ride, I like to reward myself with great food!  McKenzie Station Pub has never let me down. The beef brisket burger or Brisket Fries are to die for!” 

Local resident Chris LaVoie
Trail Highlights
Useful Information

Tips & Resources


Scenic Highway / Bikeway with low motor traffic:  

Shuttles:  Shuttles are available daily by Appointment only 541-822-6272

Food & Drinks

Water – Bring lots of water – this is a big trail.  You’ll want to stay hydrated.  You can refill water at a few of the campgrounds along the way, yet the water sources are off trail and may be tough to find. 

Food – Bring snacks – 38 miles of road bike heaven requires fuel.  Lots of climbing, especially if riding up from the west.

Places to Eat – After ride, there are a few places to choose from in McKenzie River or in Oakridge – including places to get a cold beer.  McKenzie area restaurants near the bottom of the trail include:    McKenzie Station Pub, Obsidian Grill, Takoda’s 

Necessary Gear

Bring lots of water and snacks this is a big ride. 

Bring standard bike gear – patch kit, spare tube, multitool, etc.  

There are no stores until the end of the ride. 

  • Cell coverage is limited on the ride, yet available on both ends with major carries.

  • Great Lodging Options at both ends of the ride.   McKenzie River area  – lush forest and the wild and scenic McKenzie River.   Sisters – high desert with old west theme.

  • VisitMcKenzieRiver.com for more information on area activities, food and lodging.

Useful Information
McKenzie Pass - west side

Travel Journal

This is one of the Oregon rides that is expertly covered in Jim Moore’s 75 Classic Rides Oregon (see the “Oregon” section in Rides by Region).

This ride is the greatest climb and descent in Oregon.  ‘Nuff said.  And in addition, you get class-A Oregon forest and an enormous lava “moonscape” you’ll never forget.

Jay’s Essential Bike Rides

From the Steel Bridge Blog

“The big reason that I was drawn to McKenzie Pass is that for several weeks each spring it is open exclusively to non-motorized traffic. When winter snow arrives the pass closes. In the spring, crews begin plowing the snow and eventually bikes and pedestrians are permitted along the route. In a normal year, the route reopens to motorists on the third Monday in June. Erin and I made plans to bike the highway on a Sunday, the last day before it would open to motorists.”

“The mountains are glorious, though clouds still block the upper tips of the Sisters. I watch proudly as Erin rolls towards me and dismounts her bike. I ask how she feels upon reaching the top, perhaps expecting a hint of gratitude that I helped motivate her to achieve her goal.”   

Click the “Continue Reading” button to hear about the rest of their journey – sounds like they should have started the ride in Sisters…..

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