Cycling City to Seaside

105 miles

About 7 hours ride time

3802 Elevation gain

Cycling Maps / Resources

Elevation_City2Sea

[Elevation/Speed Chart]

Prior to this ride my longest ride had been Larch Mountain (Larch Mt April & Larch Mt July[watch died towards beginning of descend] ) – about 70 miles, but with some serious elevation gain over a short distance! I have been cycling a bunch – mostly commuter miles with a few longer rides (20 – 30 mi). These miles had built me a solid base.

I began my journey from the City to Seaside bright and early around 6:45am. I had a nice and easy few mile warm up to the intersection of the St Johns Bridge and Germantown Road where I waited for my buddy – Andrew.

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Andrew is a seasoned rider and knows the area well – he hook me up with a pack to use and a beautiful draft for the first 30 miles of my ride … (which definitely helped to conserve energy!)

1

Highway 30 is by far the worst part of this ride – there is a bunch of traffic/road noise and the bike lane isn’t the cleanest (gravel & uneven surfaces periodically). There was a slight breeze making layers essential early in the morning.

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When we hit Scappoose it was time for a coffee stop at Cafe Thirty. The caffeine and delicious donut was enough to reenergize us before my first major hill climb.

2

This section of road was refreshing to ride especially coming right off of highway 30! There was just a few cars and the road paralleled a creek to the base of the first climb. The road weaved through a highly dense forest, which kept the temperature low – needless to say we made quick stops to avoid being chilled. Andrew cycled with me to the top of the first climb – about 30 miles in. Here, he handed over the pack he was so graciously carrying for me and we split, both descending downhill our separate ways.

3

I hit it hard and got moving fast on the downhill section to mostly warm up, but to also enjoy flying through some way fun “S-Curves!”

While Andrew and I were at the Coffee Shop my parents had called and told me they were going to follow my route. They met up with me about 60 miles in at the Highway 103/202 juncture. I took a 20 – 30 minute break eating my PBJ sandwich and rehydrating. Before long I started to see some other cyclists in the distance and decided it was time to get on it.

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The second and definitely most difficult hill climb is at about mile 65. I already had a good idea what I was getting myself into because I had run this hill during Hood to Coast – its a brutal hill on foot and bike! For most of the way my average mile splits were sub 4 minute miles – once I hit the hill my mile pace immediately increased to 6 minute +/ mile. Its a tough climb that curves up the hill to just over 1,000 ft. At the top (74mi/1,026ft) I could smell the cold, salty marine air, but I knew I had many more miles ahead before reaching the beach! Before switching into high gear I looked back and saw a couple of cyclist hot on my tale. This descent was about a 1,000ft drop over 10 miles with some great “S-Curves” thrown in as well.

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I took a couple of stops along the way to refill water and grab food out the pack. As you can see its beautiful country…

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For the most part the route is clearly marked and easy to navigate. The section below was the only confusing area. On google maps the road is listed as Ollney Cuttoff Rd – it is actually marked Ollney Lane. I figured they were the same based on other landmarks nearby, but decided to ride onto Youngs River Road. Ollney Lane and Youngs River Road are about one mile at most from one another and end up both connecting in the end – so either one works.

5

From turning off Highway 202 it is about 20 miles to Seaside. The road is mostly rolling hills with a couple of major climbs. Fatigue was definitely setting in because the slightest elevation gain was hurting!

*NOTE: Small section (Less than quarter mile) of Youngs River Road is graveled – small rock and very ride-able (easy does it!).

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[First sighting of the Final Destination – towards the top of the last hill climb]

6

My Garmin 405 watch unfortunately died on me a few miles short of my final destination 😦

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The Ocean!

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Eat! Eat! Eat! (Garmin watch says I burnt about 7,000 calories) Pizza Huts 2 foot pizza devoured.

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Celebratory brew – none finer than Hop Czar from Bridgeport Brewery

Along this route there are long sections of absolutely nothing, which can be good and bad. The good – low amounts of traffic & beautiful scenery to take in. The bad – if something happens you are a ways from anything. If you plan well many problems can be avoided…

  • Scappoose (Coffee, Refill Water, Supply [Fred Myers] )
  • Scappoose/Highway 47 Cut Off (5 miles South is Vernonia)
  • Birkenfeld (Coffee Shop/Country Store)
  • Youngs River Road / Highway 202 Cut Off (Country Store)

Overall it was a great route that mostly followed the Hood to Coast Route. Most of the roads were freshly paved making for a smoother and faster ride (Thanks President Obama!).

(Parents said it took about 4 hours to drive my bike route)

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One response to this post.

  1. Posted by MamaBus on September 16, 2010 at 7:36 pm

    Fantastic Post! And Congrats, one more thing off your list! Go Big G! I like the detail of the map,with the pics, gives a realistic feel like we were there. Oh yeah and the Food Pics perfect. I’m all about the calories.

    Reply

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