Author Topic: Bus from Portland to Astoria  (Read 2362 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline BikingBrian

Bus from Portland to Astoria
« on: June 28, 2013, 09:00:59 am »
I am flying to Portland, and I have a reservation for me and the bicycle on the bus from the Portland Amtrak station to Astoria. (Handy tip: to find on Amtrak, look for station codes PDX and ART.)

So has anyone used this bus before, and how did the logistics work out? I saw the FAQ at the link below but have a couple of questions. Do you actually have to arrive early enough to "check" your luggage, or just hand it to the bus driver before boarding. Does the bike need to be boxed, or is unboxed OK?

http://www.northwest-point.com/schedule.aspx

Offline aggie

Re: Bus from Portland to Astoria
« Reply #1 on: June 28, 2013, 10:55:55 am »
They use the "big" buses and bikes are stored in the regular luggage compartment.  It may be best to leave it boxed although they say you can have them unboxed although transporting a boxed bike might be a bit of a hassle from the airport.  As I recall Portland has a light rail line that runs from the airport.  Not sure if you have to make a connection to get to downtown but you can check their website.  Portland has an extensive bike trail/lane system and if you have time you may be able to ride from the airport to the Amtrak Terminal.  I haven't taken that bus but it looks like a comfortable ride.  The bus stop is on the side of the terminal outside the Amtrak luggage area.  You will see a number of different bus lines that go to different cities. 

Offline BikingBrian

Re: Bus from Portland to Astoria
« Reply #2 on: June 28, 2013, 11:16:25 am »
I'm flying to PDX, but I'm shipping my bike to Union Station via Amtrak Express, and most of my gear is in a box waiting for me at a FedEx downtown. So red and yellow light rail will be able to get me between all those locations. The bike is in one of those big Amtrak boxes where you remove the pedals and handlebars and roll it in the box. I'll have about half a day before catching the bus, so I'll have to think about whether to leave everything packed in their boxes, or unpack everything and explore around town.

Offline indyfabz

Re: Bus from Portland to Astoria
« Reply #3 on: June 28, 2013, 01:41:40 pm »
I was in Portland again last September for Cycle Oregon. It's a very short walk from the Red Line to the Amtrak station. (When you are in the arrival terminal facing the exits, walk to the right to find the Red Line.) IIIRC, you can see the tower of the station as you cross the river on the Red Line. Downtown Portland is pretty compact and easily walkable. If you need a good book for the tour, definitely stop at the giant, independent book store in town. Can't remember the name, but it's famous. You are probably better off leaving your bike and just walking around. If you need any last minute bike items, look up the Bike Gallery's downtown location. There is alo a big outdoor store in the downtown area. Can't remember the name of that, either, but if you search Google it will probably show up. If you want some interesting eats, there is a concentration of food trucks between SW Washington and SW Alder between 9th & 10th.

Offline adventurepdx

  • World Traveler
  • *****
  • Posts: 263
  • Riding bikes in and around Portland, Oregon
Re: Bus from Portland to Astoria
« Reply #4 on: June 28, 2013, 02:16:32 pm »
If you need a good book for the tour, definitely stop at the giant, independent book store in town. Can't remember the name, but it's famous.

That would be Powells at W Burnside and NW 10th.

There is also a big outdoor store in the downtown area. Can't remember the name of that, either...

Are you thinking of the REI at NW 14th and Johnson?

Offline adventurepdx

  • World Traveler
  • *****
  • Posts: 263
  • Riding bikes in and around Portland, Oregon
Re: Bus from Portland to Astoria
« Reply #5 on: June 28, 2013, 02:21:37 pm »
Another thing to note: You'll need to buy a bike ticket for $5 for that bus, boxed or unboxed. This one is a strange rule. And by "strange", I mean that every time I've taken the bus from Astoria TO Portland and bought a ticket at the Astoria transit center, they tell me I don't need a special ticket for the bike and the bus driver doesn't care. But that one time I didn't buy a ticket in Portland for the trip TO Astoria, an Amtrak ticket agent came out and demanded that I do.

Offline John Nelson

Re: Bus from Portland to Astoria
« Reply #6 on: June 28, 2013, 02:40:32 pm »
Even if a box is not required, bikes are better protected in the cargo area of a bus if boxed. It keeps them from sliding around and banging into everything.
« Last Edit: June 28, 2013, 05:10:06 pm by John Nelson »

Offline BikingBrian

Re: Bus from Portland to Astoria
« Reply #7 on: June 28, 2013, 05:07:53 pm »
Thanks for the tips. Weighing the pros and cons. I'll just leave everything boxed up for the trip to Astoria. I used the option to pay the $5 bike fee when buying the bus ticket online.

Offline John Nelson

Re: Bus from Portland to Astoria
« Reply #8 on: June 28, 2013, 05:13:32 pm »
it's a nice, comfortable bus with on-board Wi-Fi, and it drops you off in Astoria with convenient access to services. Be sure to hike up the hill and climb the Astoria Column.

Offline BikingBrian

Re: Bus from Portland to Astoria
« Reply #9 on: June 28, 2013, 05:16:36 pm »
Thanks, I booked a hotel which is walking distance from the bus stop, though I suspect not walking distance with a boxed bike and a 25 pound box. ;D

Offline aggie

Re: Bus from Portland to Astoria
« Reply #10 on: June 28, 2013, 06:50:58 pm »
You'll find the bus stop just outside Amtrak's baggage room so at least in Portland you don't have far to go with your bike. 

Offline John Nelson

Re: Bus from Portland to Astoria
« Reply #11 on: June 28, 2013, 07:08:34 pm »
The Astoria bus station is only one block from the bike shop, and it's a good shop.
« Last Edit: June 28, 2013, 07:13:11 pm by John Nelson »

Offline BikingBrian

Re: Bus from Portland to Astoria
« Reply #12 on: June 29, 2013, 10:04:44 am »
One more thing - are there lockers available for at the train or bus stations for something pannier sized?

Offline adventurepdx

  • World Traveler
  • *****
  • Posts: 263
  • Riding bikes in and around Portland, Oregon
Re: Bus from Portland to Astoria
« Reply #13 on: June 29, 2013, 12:50:23 pm »
One more thing - are there lockers available for at the train or bus stations for something pannier sized?

Union Station does not. I know that Greyhound used to have lockers but am unsure whether they currently do.

Offline aggie

Re: Bus from Portland to Astoria
« Reply #14 on: June 29, 2013, 06:51:11 pm »
The folks in the Amtrak baggage claim are pretty accommodating.  Since you are shipping your bike by Amtrak they may hold on to your panniers for a couple of hours.  Just show them your claim check (bike) and explain that you are catching a later bus.