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  1. #1
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    Portland Bike Quiver

    Moving to Portland (Hillsboro...) for a summer internship...possibly into a full time roll later. I'm planning on bringing some bikes up there, and I want to know what would be the perfect bike quiver / what the riding is like up there.

    I've got the following bikes atm:
    - homemade e-bike
    - fuji altamira road bike
    - diamondback haanjo carbon road plus
    - giant trance advanced non-boost 27.5

    I'm thinking just the haanjo as an all-road and the trance for mtb, but are there good trails close by? Would I be better off leaving the MTB and just renting for the few times I go? I want to do a lot of skimo so that might limit my weekend riding time. OMTM rides are definitely on my list along with any sort of halfday riding from my door. With as much dirt as possible hopefully mixed in.

  2. #2
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    I would skip the MTB, the trails you can ride to are pretty limited. If you head up to Sandy Ridge or out to the Gorge or Bend, you can rent. (Bend in particular has nice MTB rentals for competitive prices).

    Gravel is hot right now, so yes to the Haanjo. If you're comfortable using it on pure road rides (vs. the Altamira) maybe bring some slicks too -- there is a lot of road riding to choose from (note: I may be biased, I ride road almost exclusively). I think the Haanjo will be perfect for most of the dirt / gravel in town (fire lanes in Forest Park, Saltzman road, etc.)

    Will you be bike commuting at all? Figure out how long your commute is and what the bike storage options will be like at your home and workplace. We have a pretty bad bike theft problem here (Portland is worse than Hillsboro), inside your apartment / house and inside at your workplace are best if that's an option. If you're living in Portland and commuting to Hillsboro, consider bringing the e-bike. It could be close to 20 miles one way depending on where specifically you live and work, which adds up if you're riding every day. My buddy commutes from SE Portland to Intel, and it's only about 20-30 minutes slower than driving, depending on time of day: an e-bike would probably trim 10-15 minutes off that. There are decent bike routes most of the way from Portland to Hillsboro (depending where exactly you're going), but once you get into Hillsboro, most of the bike lanes are on busy 4-lane roads, which is workable but hectic.
    Last edited by dan_pdx; 04-08-2019 at 08:43 AM.

  3. #3
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    Lots of decent MTB within 2-3 hrs of PDX, but nothing close enough for an after work lap, IMO.

    dan's advice ^^ is pretty good overall. Don't sleep on the amount of climbing you'll have to do to get from PDX to Hillsboro.

    One thing I'd add is that if you want to use a bike around town I'd get an old, cheap MTB. Both to keep the risk of theft down, but also because I'd constantly flat riding around downtown on my road bike, but once I switched to a SS mtb I never had those issues. There's so many rough roads, train tracks, etc that it kinda sucks on a road bike.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Supermoon View Post
    One thing I'd add is that if you want to use a bike around town I'd get an old, cheap MTB. Both to keep the risk of theft down, but also because I'd constantly flat riding around downtown on my road bike, but once I switched to a SS mtb I never had those issues. There's so many rough roads, train tracks, etc that it kinda sucks on a road bike.
    Yes! Great point, two thumbs up for a bar bike / grocery getter. I commute on a beater steel MTB and for short trips in town it's definitely more practical than a road bike.

  5. #5
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    less than 30mins to Stub Stewart St Park for MTB from Hillsboro, but PDX is pretty limited for close MTB, as mentioned abv

    i'm a road bike proponent for the commute: faster, lighter ride

    if you're going to commute, you will eventually want a dedicated commuter by the time wet season hits (if you stay)

  6. #6
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    Yeah I'm realizing that even in Austin I don't get on my MTB more than a once a month at best...I really enjoy being able to ride from my door or all-day excursions with an earn-your-turns type terrain. It sounds like Portland doesn't have much in the way of that. But Stub Stewart does look fun from a quick Youtube vid I saw..

    I think the Haanjo will be my do-it-all bike for sure. I'm going to have to get some road hoops for it.

    I'm definitely going to have a commuter of sorts, I'll either buy one there or bring my e-bike. Would it be fine locked up? It's a beater, but with >$750 invested in the electric bits.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by thejongiest View Post
    Yeah I'm realizing that even in Austin I don't get on my MTB more than a once a month at best...I really enjoy being able to ride from my door or all-day excursions with an earn-your-turns type terrain. It sounds like Portland doesn't have much in the way of that. But Stub Stewart does look fun from a quick Youtube vid I saw..

    I think the Haanjo will be my do-it-all bike for sure. I'm going to have to get some road hoops for it.

    I'm definitely going to have a commuter of sorts, I'll either buy one there or bring my e-bike. Would it be fine locked up? It's a beater, but with >$750 invested in the electric bits.
    you can't leave a bike outside and expect to see it whole when you return at the end of the day (not in pdx proper anyway)
    most buildings have some secure options - investigate options at your work
    private campuses out in beaverton & hillsboro should have no problems

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by acinpdx View Post
    you can't leave a bike outside and expect to see it whole when you return at the end of the day (not in pdx proper anyway)
    most buildings have some secure options - investigate options at your work
    private campuses out in beaverton & hillsboro should have no problems
    Good to know what to expect. I lived in SF for a bit and it was the same there. I wouldn't leave a bike parked for more than a couple hours tops when I was out at the bars - fully expecting it might be gone too

    A bike belongs inside anyways

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by acinpdx View Post
    you can't leave a bike outside and expect to see it whole when you return at the end of the day (not in pdx proper anyway)
    most buildings have some secure options - investigate options at your work
    private campuses out in beaverton & hillsboro should have no problems
    Yeah, my Intel buddy parks his road bike in front of his building during the day and hasn't had any issues over 5+ years. It's a nice bike, carbon frame with Ultegra or maybe Dura Ace bits. On the other hand, he is also unpredictable: doesn't bike year-round and doesn't bike every day in the summer, so it's not a reliable target. If you do need to park outside at work, try to do it in front of a camera.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by dan_pdx View Post
    Yeah, my Intel buddy parks his road bike in front of his building during the day and hasn't had any issues over 5+ years. It's a nice bike, carbon frame with Ultegra or maybe Dura Ace bits. On the other hand, he is also unpredictable: doesn't bike year-round and doesn't bike every day in the summer, so it's not a reliable target. If you do need to park outside at work, try to do it in front of a camera.
    I'll be at Intel as well. I'm trying to figure out where to live, but it sounds like NW Portland may be the ticket. I don't want to sit in my car for 45min+, but I also don't think I could stomach living in the 'burbs.

    The ride in doesn't look so long, but I'm curious how easy it is or whether there's a lot of stop and go. e-biking could be my main plan.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by thejongiest View Post
    I'll be at Intel as well. I'm trying to figure out where to live, but it sounds like NW Portland may be the ticket. I don't want to sit in my car for 45min+, but I also don't think I could stomach living in the 'burbs.

    The ride in doesn't look so long, but I'm curious how easy it is or whether there's a lot of stop and go. e-biking could be my main plan.
    1hour+ bike ride with a decent hill to start your morning & end your day -- you'd be in shape

  12. #12
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    It's about 15 miles from downtown Portland, and you climb over the West Hills, which are reasonably steep. Total climb is about 1,000 feet, but you get almost all of it in the first 5 miles or so. Here's the route my buddy takes (I sometimes ride part-way with him for summer morning workouts): https://bit.ly/2UptEDZ

    It's actually a great and pleasant ride on either low-traffic streets or physically separated bike route until you get to Walker Road. You don't have to stop much; it's good for training. That last part sucks -- there's still not too many stops, but you are right next to traffic on suburban arterials.

  13. #13
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    You live in portland.

    Your quiver is incomplete
    https://bikeportland.org/2016/02/14/...-photos-174947
    Besides the comet that killed the dinosaurs nothing has destroyed a species faster than entitled white people.-ajp

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by thejongiest View Post
    I'll be at Intel as well. I'm trying to figure out where to live, but it sounds like NW Portland may be the ticket. I don't want to sit in my car for 45min+, but I also don't think I could stomach living in the 'burbs.

    The ride in doesn't look so long, but I'm curious how easy it is or whether there's a lot of stop and go. e-biking could be my main plan.
    Pretty easy to take the MAX from NW PDX to Intel with a bit of riding on either end if you'd prefer as well.

    Edit: Beaverton and Hillsboro suck to live in if you are young and like to do stuff that isn't going to the mall. Ask me how I know...

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by kidwoo View Post
    You live in portland.

    Your quiver is incomplete
    https://bikeportland.org/2016/02/14/...-photos-174947
    I got 3 and half STD's just from clicking on that link.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Supermoon View Post
    Pretty easy to take the MAX from NW PDX to Intel with a bit of riding on either end if you'd prefer as well.

    Edit: Beaverton and Hillsboro suck to live in if you are young and like to do stuff that isn't going to the mall. Ask me how I know...
    Glad I'm validated on the idea that there's no way in hell I'm living there.

    Quote Originally Posted by RootSkier View Post
    I got 3 and half STD's just from clicking on that link.
    WTF is up with Portland and its weird subcultures - is there a nuclear plant nearby or something?

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by thejongiest View Post
    WTF is up with Portland and its weird subcultures - is there a nuclear plant nearby or something?
    Ha! As a matter of fact, yes...two actually. Hanford is upstream and has been known to leak, Trojan is closer but downstream.

    Portland (like Austin, I think) used to be a lifestyle town, where you could live comfortably on a barista salary and pursue your quirky hobbies, band, or art projects on the side. Sadly, those days are long gone now -- COL has gone up a lot and the fun factor of living here has gone down proportionately, but some of the last remnants of those days are still holding on.

    One example: I think that the Zoobomb ride is still going on and you should definitely check it out. They ride tiny kid's Walmart bikes down the West Hills. It's ridiculous and kind of terrifying, but a good taste of the hijinks that used to ensue around here.
    Last edited by dan_pdx; 04-08-2019 at 06:14 PM.

  18. #18
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    Yes! Zoobombing is a PDX landmark.

    Here is a BBC feature on it: https://www.bbc.com/news/av/world-us...ortland-oregon

    I like the super punk music they play while everyone respectfully enters and exits the train.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Supermoon View Post
    Pretty easy to take the MAX from NW PDX to Intel with a bit of riding on either end if you'd prefer as well.

    Edit: Beaverton and Hillsboro suck to live in if you are young and like to do stuff that isn't going to the mall. Ask me how I know...

    Unless you plan to go out bar hopping every weekday live where you work. Never understood the mentality of living where you weekend and then commute an hour each way to get to work every day. I take the MAX downtown when I want to drink it up and eat good. 30 min ride.

    That said, Stub Stewart, Gales Creek Ravens Ridge on West side. Sandy Ridge/Mt Hood far west side. 1 hour to Hood River. Black Rock 1:15 to the south.

    Bring your Trance, you won't regret it....I ride with a group of Intel folks T-Th every week in the summer ~6pm. PM me when you arrive and I can invite you if you are cool...They'd be glad to welcome extra folks.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by sirbumpsalot View Post
    Unless you plan to go out bar hopping every weekday live where you work. Never understood the mentality of living where you weekend and then commute an hour each way to get to work every day. I take the MAX downtown when I want to drink it up and eat good. 30 min ride.

    Bring your Trance, you won't regret it....I ride with a group of Intel folks T-Th every week in the summer ~6pm. PM me when you arrive and I can invite you if you are cool...They'd be glad to welcome extra folks.
    Word, I'm gonna think about it. I commuted to South Bay from SF and it was a hellscape. But I also know myself. I think I'm gonna try and find a month-to-month (or even week-to-week) so that I can move if I'm unhappy somewhere. Life balance is far more important to me than anything.

    And yeah...I'm probably just going to bring road/all-road/mtb...it's just a matter of how to most efficiently and economically get them there. It's probably overkill for a summer but ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

    I'll definitely hit you up about the rides, that sounds awesome & I'd love to meet some mags/community up there. I'm not fast tho...

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by thejongiest View Post

    And yeah...I'm probably just going to bring road/all-road/mtb...it's just a matter of how to most efficiently and economically get them there. It's probably overkill for a summer but ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
    https://www.bikeflights.com/ is cheap and easy for shipping bikes. Give me a shout if you're in the Hood River area this summer and want to ride.

  22. #22
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    I live in Corvallis so can't speak for Portland itself...but if you're looking for intel on areas to ride within 1-2 hours you will definitely want a mtn bike. If you have a car you will for sure want to check out riding near Hood River, cascades, and down towards Oakridge. Cool options too south of PDX near Corvallis (Blackrock, Mary's peak, Mac-Dunn, Alsea for a weekend trip).

    I personally use a gravel bike that doubles as my commuter more than my mountain bike. Lots of gravel options around Portland, and like you, the rides I tend to enjoy the most these days are from out my front door to FS or gravel roads (which here I can find just outside of town).
    Last edited by Groomer Gambler; 04-10-2019 at 08:35 PM.

  23. #23
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    When I lived in PDX, the best way to fit in as a rider was to convert a twenty-year-old, former high end, multi-speed bike into a single and then wrap the downtube with electrical tape.
    ¡Órale, vato!

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