Twice a week during the dry season I wrap up the day’s work and head out for a bit of fresh air and exercise in what has become a highlight of living at the edge of the Northern Oregon Coast Range: the midweek grind.
The midweek grind is a 15 mile road bike loop I mapped out even before moving to Oregon. It isn’t the first recurring weekday ride that I’ve done. Nor is it the longest. But it certainly is the steepest and windiest. And the scenery incredible!
The ride begins at my doorstep. Before hitting the half mile mark, a great climb begins, ascending at up to a 16% grade. The climb tops out around mile 4 and then descends 3.5 crazy miles at 30-40 mph through tight turns with no shoulders and steep drop offs. Finally it’s another six rolling miles back home.
The ride is a respectable workout going up and real adrenaline rush going down. But it is also a beautiful ride. During the climb I am rewarded with forested mountains and horse pastures to the south and the Columbia River and glaciated peaks to the north. There is one point near the top where I can see Rainier, St Helens, Adams and Hood all at once!
Here’s to taking exercise outdoors. And here’s to the beautiful pacific northwest!