Adventure Cycling Association Forum

Bicycle Travel => Routes => Topic started by: jamesofyorkshire on May 18, 2011, 10:10:39 pm

Title: I-84 Portland-Boise
Post by: jamesofyorkshire on May 18, 2011, 10:10:39 pm
Anyone taken I-84/Hwy30 from Portland to Boise?

I'm heading from Portland to Boise in a couple of weeks and am hoping to take Hwy224/26 Estacada/Madras but it's still closed with 4ft of snow.......If it ain't open when I set off, I may take the Colombia Gorge/I-84/Hwy30 route. Anyone taken this route? It's probably very noisy and busy, but is it doable? Is it relatively flat?

I-84/ is it on a bicycle?
Title: Re: I-84 Portland-Boise
Post by: indyfabz on May 19, 2011, 10:06:14 am
I rode it off and one heading west through the Dalles and then to Rooster Rock State Park.  I also took a bus ride from Portland to Boardman using I-84.  Noisy,  yes.  But the traffic (second week of September) was moderate east of Portland.  I remember it being realtively gentl grade-wise, and it's my understanding the wind blows almost invariably west to east through the gorge.  Personally, I would not want to spend that much time on an Interstate like that.  I also don't know if it's open to bikes all the way to Boise.

Your original route suggests that you are willing to do some hills.  Why not drop south on something like the John Day Highway and pick up U.S. 26 west of John Day?  Some pretty country (including the fossil monument) , although services are probably relatively scarce.  I do know that there is stuff in Condon.  The town of Fossil might have something as well.
Title: Re: I-84 Portland-Boise
Post by: jamesofyorkshire on May 25, 2011, 06:12:29 pm
Actually, I'd rather NOT do I stated - I'm NOT fit! Especially not fit enough to do long hills with my laden bike.

I've taken Hwy 26 across Oregon many times and yes, it's a nice, scenic route, but I'd rather not go that way on my bike at this time. I haven't cycled for a couple of years so dont want to hammer my knees/legs/heart/lungs straight off.

I'm thinking of Hwy 20 just because it's flat(ter).
Title: Re: I-84 Portland-Boise
Post by: James on May 26, 2011, 01:22:30 am
Hi james. I am James from Boise. I have ridden some of the route you talk about.  Here is my 2 cents worth,  I am mostly familiar with the western end, (Pendleton to Boise)  There is a fairly substantial climb east just out of Pendleton (Deadman Pass appropriately named) but if you can find the old highway up the hill, it has very little traffic.  Also the old highway kind of meanders back and forth around the freeway and is actually a very pleasant ride in the forests of the Blue Mountains.  You can follow this scenic byway nearly all the way to LaGrand.  LaGrand to Baker City has several pleasant backroad options.  From Baker you can once again follow the old highway for much of the route.  I would also recommend that you ride to Weiser along the Snake river then down the Oregon side (less traffic) to Ontario.  this avoids a couple of BIG dry hills on the freeway.  From there, lots of country roads to Boise.

P.S.  if you need more info, let me know.
Title: Re: I-84 Portland-Boise
Post by: jamesofyorkshire on May 30, 2011, 08:21:34 am
Thanks for that James. I'll PM you for more details.
Title: Re: I-84 Portland-Boise
Post by: jamesofyorkshire on May 30, 2011, 12:19:14 pm
Where EXACTLY are those 'BIG dry hills' you refer to at the end?
Title: Re: I-84 Portland-Boise
Post by: johnsondasw on May 30, 2011, 05:32:11 pm
On Memorial Day weekend 2002, a friend and I found some of those back roads between La Grande and Pendleton.  It was very pleasant riding, with so many deer around that we had to be careful not to hit one.  There were huge headwinds from the west approaching Pendleton. :(
Title: Re: I-84 Portland-Boise
Post by: James on June 02, 2011, 12:47:05 pm
Hi James.  James here again.  The hills I refer to are not particularly high passes, but they would get your attention.  South of Farewell Bend State Park (by the way a fairly nice place to stay with biker hiker facilities if you happen to be camping) the Freeway leaves the Snake river and climbs over several hills that are fairly steep before dropping to Ontario.  The terrain is also uninteresting, just dry grass and sagebrush.  I prefer turning east at exit 356 and following 201 the Olds Ferry Ontario road.  It rolls along the river before turning south through farm country to Ontario.  This route is lightly traveled and more scenic, although it would add a few more miles to your distance from Farewell Bend to Ontario. 
Title: Re: I-84 Portland-Boise
Post by: jamesofyorkshire on June 13, 2011, 05:40:14 pm
Hi James. Yes, I took the is indeed a pleasant route.