The three routes leave Corvallis on the same roads for nearly seven miles, after crossing the Willamette River to travel south on Peoria Road. This road is a bike-friendly route, and is part of the Willamette Valley Scenic Bikeway, which travels from Champoeg State Park to Armitage Park, just north of Eugene. Those choosing the short route (16 miles) will leave Peoria Road and ride for a mile and a half to arrive at a rest stop, then follow the medium and long routes to return to campus.
Both the medium (55 miles) and long (73 miles) routes continue together to the first stop at Peoria County Park, on the banks of the Willamette River, before traveling south and then east on lightly used county roads to Brownsville. Up to this point, the major climb has been summiting an I-5 overpass.
The long route turns prior to lunch to travel an 18-mile loop to Crawfordsville, traveling through agricultural fields of the Willamette Valley, and using Courtney Creek Road. Following Courtney Creek for a short distance, past the well-maintained (but unused since 1926) Courtney Creek one-room school, riders will get to use their well-toned legs to climb a short, one-mile hill. The top of the one hill of the day leads to a longer downhill before arriving at the Crawfordsville covered bridge. After riding for a mile on a state highway, the route again uses a very lightly traveled, flat county road to arrive at Brownsville’s Pioneer Park for lunch, joining those on the medium route.
The medium route will travel less than a mile after turning from the long route to arrive at the lunch site in Brownsville. After lunch, both routes travel together to the finish. The route again uses county roads with low traffic volumes to travel through the flat valley, with another momentous climb over a freeway overpass to arrive at Thompson’s Mills State Heritage Site. This state park’s property is the oldest water-powered mill in the state, and its turbines can be seen in action on guided tours. A water right that predates statehood produces the water flow that still runs the milling machines for demonstrations.
After a stop at Thompson’s Mills, riders on both routes continue on flat roadways to the picturesque Oakville Presbyterian Church, built in 1850, where the short route joins the others for the last stop of the day, prior to returning to Corvallis.
There are still spots left in the Summer Bike Camp Weekend Ride. Claim your spot!