Mark Morical: These Central Oregon path networks provide winter mountain biking alternatives

BEND, Ore. — Ski and snowboard season is in full swing as Mt. Bachelor, Hoodoo and Willamette Go ski areas are all open for enterprise.

Many outdoor-minded people in Central Oregon have turned their consideration to the slopes, and for good purpose, as early-season snow has blanketed the Cascades.

Whereas skiers and snowboarders hunt for powder at space resorts, mountain bikers are left on the lookout for dry areas the place they’ll proceed their sport by means of the winter. These with fatbikes (mountain bikes with wider tires designed for snow) can deal with snow- and ice-covered trails west of Bend.

However sure areas in Central Oregon stay comparatively snow-free through the winter, permitting for year-round using on a typical mountain bike. One such space is west of Redmond, the place the Maston and Cascade View Trailhead networks present offseason mountain biking choices.

Mason space

The Maston space is likely one of the prime winter mountain biking locations, and it is fashionable with path runners as properly.

Positioned north of Bend between Tumalo and Eagle Crest Resort, the Maston space is a flat plateau simply west of the Deschutes River that features about 20 miles of singletrack with limitless loop choices. Many of the trails characteristic rolling terrain together with sagebrush and juniper bushes.

The singletrack at Maston was in prime form this previous weekend. The grime was agency and cheesy, with no puddles and only a slight dusting of snow, making for almost perfect situations.

The Bureau of Land Administration has designated Maston as a mountain biking space within the Cline Buttes Recreation Space Plan. Maston constitutes about 4,000 acres of the plan’s 32,000 acres (50 sq. miles), the place trails are within the works for mountain bikers, hikers and horseback riders.

Over the previous couple of years, the BLM’s growth of Maston as a mountain biking vacation spot has turn into evident, with path junction indicators and a trailhead with a map kiosk, restrooms and designated parking. There at all times appears to be not less than just a few vehicles within the parking space November by means of April. On weekends, it could actually refill.

The world is definitely no secret, particularly when different fashionable using spots west of Bend are lined with snow or ice.

I usually trip the outer loop at Maston, and it really works properly in both path for a few 12- to 14-mile outing.

The Rockbar Path, which parallels the pictureque Deschutes River canyon on the east finish of the path community, is essentially the most technical path at Maston. At first look, the path seems an impossibly technical jumble of rocks alongside the sting of the canyon. However the rocks are completely positioned for mountain bikers to trip over whereas rigorously sneaking glances of the river far under.

And for individuals who would moderately cease to absorb the views, a number of viewpoints are positioned simply off the path.

Cascade View Trailhead

Additionally a part of the Cline Buttes Recreation Space Plan, the Cascade View Trailhead space consists of 12 miles of singletrack simply northwest of Maston and west of Eagle Crest Resort.

The paths, designed by volunteers with the Central Oregon Path Alliance, characteristic numerous loops that blend flowing single observe with technical rock areas, and simply the correct amount of climbing. Add within the sprawling views of snow-covered Cascade peaks, and these trails are definitely worth the 30-minute drive from Bend.

The Cascade View trailhead is positioned off Eagle Crest Boulevard, which is accessed from Freeway 126.

The path system is open to non-motorized customers and consists of about 7 miles of trails open to horseback riders, hikers and runners along with the bike trails. The pedestrian and equestrian trails are separate from the mountain biking trails to scale back conflicts.

The paths at the moment are well-signed so bikers can know the place they’re. A map of the realm is obtainable at

Mountain views within the space embrace Tam McArthur Rim, the Three Sisters, Mount Washington, Three-Fingered Jack and Mount Jefferson.

A current 12-mile trip from the Cascade View Trailhead included about 500 toes of climbing and took about 1 hour, 45 minutes.

The world ought to serve to take a few of the demand away from close by Maston.

Even within the depths of a snowy winter, mountain bikers can discover locations to trip within the Excessive Desert.

©2022 Tribune Content material Company, LLC

this story was initially revealed December 15, 2022 2:30 AM.

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