7 Bikes for 7 Wonders: The Columbia River Gorge
Each of the 7 Wonders of Oregon offers a different, exciting ride. To celebrate this, we asked seven of the best bicycle builders in the state to each build a one-of-a-kind bicycle, one for each of our 7 Wonders. This bike was built for the Columbia River Gorge.
Ben Farver knows the Columbia River Gorge so well that he understands it’s not just one place – it’s a region made up of a vast variety of places, and terrains, and riding. So when he set out to design and build the perfect bike for the Gorge, he knew his focus had to stay broad. “I made a bike that can handle both paved and gravel road surfaces, as well as climbing and descending, because of the variety of terrain in the Gorge,” he explains. “The geometry of the frame is suited well for the diversity of landscape and terrain – on both pavement and gravel. It’s fast for the paved parts and stable for the gravel roads.”
The bike, designed within a traditional road-bike framework, purposely doesn’t have a lot of specific elements that are only useful in one environment. It’s set up to accommodate 28cc tires and has disk brakes, but “there’s no compromise in any one direction – it’s not overbuilt for gravel so road riding isn’t fun, and it’s not too sketchy or unstable to take off the pavement,” Ben says. “It can take you to all the fantastic places in the Gorge, in a fast and fun way.”
The theme of variety extended to the bike’s finish, as well. The multi-color paint job on the bike accentuates the stark contrast of the landscape, going from the tan hues of the arid desert-like land out around The Dalles to the lush green of the Multnomah Falls area. In the end, Ben counts this bike among his favorite projects. The best part? “Designing a bike around an area of Oregon I’m really familiar with – I’m confident in my choices of design and geometry. It’s such a cool place to take inspiration from; there’s so much beauty and diversity there.”
This bike is size medium/large, suitable for those 5’8″ to 5’11″ tall.