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Trip Report: Bikepacking C2C

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Trip Report: Bikepacking C2C

Old 06-25-22, 11:51 AM
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mtnbud
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Trip Report: Bikepacking C2C

A new signed gravel route from Corvallis to the central Oregon coast was developed a few years ago called the C2C. My friend Aaron and I made a plan to ride a loop incorporating the C2C for our first time using our plus tire bikes for bikepacking. Our first day had to be adjusted as all three of our maps indicated a private road passed through when it actually petered out. We were able to get back on schedule by the end of day two. The trip was extremely enjoyable. The ability to tour on gravel, sand, and trails away from the noise and traffic is phenomenal. I used a Trek Stache 7 and my buddy used his Trek 1120. Both bikes did great as did both packing systems.

On Day 1 we started in Grande Ronde Oregon with the intended destination of Moonshine Park near the small town of Siletz. Our maps were incorrect so we had to adjust our destination to public forest land near Drift Creek Falls. We encountered many logging trucks and many steep climbs. We peaked at about 2900 ft. with good views. After many confusing backtracks and disappointments, we adjusted our route to arrive near Drift Creek Falls to camp for the night.







On Day 2, we found a nicely paved forest service road (FS17) to get us to the coast and headed south down Highway 101 to South Beach State Park. We spent part of the route away from Hwy 101 by riding along the beach in the sand. South Beach State Park has a very nice hiker-biker camp that even has some lockable charging stations for charging phones and electronics (bring your own padlock and plugin USB charger).




For Day 3, we headed to Ona Beach and the start of the C2C gravel route. We probably could have ridden in the sand along the beach again, but didn't want to risk access back to the highway. We wound along the Beaver Creek Wetland then had a steep climb out of the drainage and into the coast range. After a long decent and a lunch break by a shaded creek, we once again had a long climb up and along a ridge before dropping into the locality of Harlan. Near Harlan we camped at a rustic campground near a large creek called Big Elk Campground.





Day 4 was a visual treat with a mix of gravel, gated dirt roads, and trails. Much of this day was on paths closed to motorized traffic. All major climbing occurred within the first 15 miles. We encountered substantial mud created from seeps before and after the single track trail around trail marker mile 17-21 or so. (Once we have a week or so of dry weather, the seeps should dry up and conditions should improve.) We ended the trip riding the MUP between Philomath and Corvallis passing through the OSU campus along the way.





If you're into gravel and getting away from the crowds, the C2C is worth checking out. It's doable as a day trip for many, but is also possible as a multi-day tour.

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Old 06-26-22, 01:33 PM
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Thank you for sharing your trip. It looks like you two had a great ride with some awesome weather for the ride.
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Old 06-26-22, 05:13 PM
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Originally Posted by M Rose View Post
Thank you for sharing your trip. It looks like you two had a great ride with some awesome weather for the ride.
The weather was great. We hit it just before the heatwave hit the valley.. 97 degrees in the valley today, but coastal temperatures never seem to get out of hand...
Was it pretty hot in Eastern Oregon today?
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Old 06-26-22, 06:50 PM
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Having done CO four times, I think Oregon has a disproportionately high number of great places to ride. You guys need to share some with the rest of us.
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Old 06-26-22, 07:05 PM
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Originally Posted by mtnbud View Post
The weather was great. We hit it just before the heatwave hit the valley.. 97 degrees in the valley today, but coastal temperatures never seem to get out of hand...
Was it pretty hot in Eastern Oregon today?
it’s currently 6:00 pm and 90 degrees… the warmest day so far this year… tomorrow is supposed to be almost 100 degrees.

The weather is just unreal here this year… going from a high of 63 degrees last Sunday to a high of 92 today…
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Old 06-26-22, 07:06 PM
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Originally Posted by indyfabz View Post
Having done CO four times, I think Oregon has a disproportionately high number of great places to ride. You guys need to share some with the rest of us.
As soon as I find some I’ll be posting them. So far I have only been doing some short out and back trips, nothing spectacular.
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Old 06-26-22, 08:47 PM
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Originally Posted by M Rose View Post
As soon as I find some I’ll be posting them. So far I have only been doing some short out and back trips, nothing spectacular.
From the few times I've been over on the far east side of Oregon, I can attest that eastern Oregon is a hidden gem that gets far less press than the west side and the Cascades.

I'll hopefully get a few more short trips in on the western side this summer. Bikepacking is opening up a whole bunch of new options for me. I'm looking forward to seeing some reports from the east side soon!
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Old 06-27-22, 04:59 AM
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My first CO was border—Nyssa to Florence. While it was all on road there looked to be some off road riding around, especially in Malheur on the way to John Day. In 2012 we did some of the Oregon Outback starring in Bly up to Silver Lake. There was basically nothing in between in the way of commercial activity. Almost no traffic. Our rest stops we’re wherever they could find space off the road. Within last couple of years I read an article about bikepacking the Outback. It may have been in Adventure Cyclist.
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Old 06-27-22, 09:42 AM
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Originally Posted by indyfabz View Post
My first CO was border—Nyssa to Florence. While it was all on road there looked to be some off road riding around, especially in Malheur on the way to John Day. In 2012 we did some of the Oregon Outback starring in Bly up to Silver Lake. There was basically nothing in between in the way of commercial activity. Almost no traffic. Our rest stops we’re wherever they could find space off the road. Within last couple of years I read an article about bikepacking the Outback. It may have been in Adventure Cyclist.
​​​​​​I'd love to do a ride through the Steens Mountains in Southeastern Oregon. This route through the area looks amazing.
Years ago I fished Owyhee Reservoir near Nyssa. There are gravel roads south of the reservoir that are insanely remote that have probably never seen a bike tire on them.
The northeast corner has huge potential for off pavement trips with many small towns to replenish supplies.
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Old 06-27-22, 10:59 AM
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The Owyhee Canyon lands just North West of Lake Owyhee are filled with deserted roads that a guy could ride for days. I was car camping down there for Memorial Day Weekend with my 4wd adventure club. I wouldn’t go into the Owyhee Canyons by bike in the middle of the summer, it’s too hot, However Fall and winter riding is possible due to very low amounts of snow fall.


Up here in the Eastern Corner I have been putting together a very rugged gravel ride riding through union, Halfway, Imnaha, Enterprise, Troy, Tolgate, and back to La Grande with very little pavement.

Where do people share their GPX files? I have a collection I would love to share.
I’ll update with pictures later tonight… or maybe start a new thread in the Northwest Regional Forums?
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Old 06-27-22, 11:08 AM
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Originally Posted by mtnbud View Post
​​​​​​I'd love to do a ride through the Steens Mountains in Southeastern Oregon. This route through the area looks amazing.
Years ago I fished Owyhee Reservoir near Nyssa. There are gravel roads south of the reservoir that are insanely remote that have probably never seen a bike tire on them.
The northeast corner has huge potential for off pavement trips with many small towns to replenish supplies.
Looks amazing, but too hard core for me.
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Old 07-02-22, 10:13 AM
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Right on. There's definitely some great riding in Oregon, but you need some big fat tires, for off-roading. 😁 I'm running 700x37s now, but want to move up to 700x45s, as my budget allows. That was part of why I bought my Soma Saga (used), is good tire clearance. 👍

EDIT: And don't forget, the dairy products are the best in the country. Tillamook cheese and Umpqua chocolate milk come to mind first, for me. 😍😁

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Old 07-02-22, 11:09 AM
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Second the Umpqua Chocolate milk!
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Old 07-04-22, 06:46 PM
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And don't forget, Tillamook Dairy makes ice cream, too. 😁 In case it's hard to read, this is Marionberry Pie ice cream, perfect for the 4th

. 😍😍😍
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Old 07-04-22, 11:09 PM
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Originally Posted by stardognine View Post
And don't forget, Tillamook Dairy makes ice cream, too. 😁 In case it's hard to read, this is Marionberry Pie ice cream, perfect for the 4th

. 😍😍😍
tillamook ice cream is the best… speaking of which… I need to make a trip to the cheese factory soon
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Old 07-05-22, 10:50 AM
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I did 4 days, mostly off pavement, through and around the Ochoco Mountains. That route is the Central Oregon Backcountry Explorer on bikepacking.com. It was a fantastic route. We did it in early May and encountered heat in the 80s as well as about five miles of pulling our bikes through snow at the summit.
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Old 07-05-22, 11:12 AM
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Originally Posted by Mrpotamus View Post
I did 4 days, mostly off pavement, through and around the Ochoco Mountains. That route is the Central Oregon Backcountry Explorer on bikepacking.com. It was a fantastic route. We did it in early May and encountered heat in the 80s as well as about five miles of pulling our bikes through snow at the summit.
Sounds great! I've considered planning a trip in the Ochocos. Take any pictures?
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Old 07-07-22, 03:39 PM
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Awesome looking trip. Congratulations for being one of the 5% of people who do bikepacking the way it was intended, unlike the majority who strap all those pouches to their "gravel" bikes and then proceed to ride on pavement.

Did you hit any rain? Have you ever toured with fenders in the past?
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Old 07-07-22, 08:32 PM
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Originally Posted by Yan View Post
Awesome looking trip. Congratulations for being one of the 5% of people who do bikepacking the way it was intended, unlike the majority who strap all those pouches to their "gravel" bikes and then proceed to ride on pavement.

Did you hit any rain? Have you ever toured with fenders in the past?
No rain. I just was checking my front wheel clearance and don't think I have enough clearance under my suspension fork. I could fit a fender on my rear tire. My seat bag is waterproof and might be enough.

I have a old Diamondback Ascent, I've converted for touring. It does have full fenders. I have never used that bike in the rain, though I've been caught in the rain with other bikes on other trips. My current trips have been short enough that I've avoided any trips when rain was in the forecast. I'll hopefully do many more bikepacking trips with my new setup. There's some pretty cool advantages to routes on gravel and trails.
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