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Madras Mountain Views Scenic Bikeway

Scenic Bikeway

  • Length:
    29.5 miles
  • Difficulty:
  • Origin:

Elevation Chart

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Stay Safe

In Oregon, a bicycle is legally considered a vehicle, and the same Oregon road laws apply. Please “be seen” and practice safe riding. Vehicle traffic, farm equipment and narrow shoulders exist on many Oregon roads, and you may find that construction projects, traffic or other events may cause road conditions or signage to differ from the map results, ride descriptions and directions. For travel options plus weather and road conditions, visit, call 511 (in Oregon only), 800.977.6368 or 503.588.2941. Routes listed on this website are for informational purposes and intended as a reference guide only.

Official Maps from Oregon Parks and Recreation

Download map and cue sheet

Route Description

The Madras Mountain Views Scenic Bikeway is a peaceful 30-mile loop through Central Oregon. It offers amazing views of Oregon’s volcanoes and agricultural and pastoral scenery.

The Bikeway passes through a sage and juniper ecosystem, showcasing basalt palisades above the Deschutes and Crooked Rivers and the farms and ranches of Jefferson County. It takes riders through an important agricultural area of the state, where grass seed, onion seed, carrot seed, garlic, potatoes, wheat, alfalfa, lavender and mint are grown.

But best of all are the magnificent views for which the Madras Mountain Views Scenic Bikeway is named. Riders enjoy views of all seven major volcanic peaks in Oregon: Mount Jefferson, the county namesake; the Three Sisters mountains, Faith, Hope and Charity; Mount Hood; Broken Top; and Three-Fingered Jack; as well as several buttes. Riders cruise on a smooth, paved road with several gravel overlooks above The Cove Palisades State Park and Lake Billy Chinook. These overlooks are great places to see eagles, raptors, deer and even snakes or lizards.

On this route, riders will pass through Culver, Metolius and Madras in Central Oregon. Each location offers a variety of amenities, including food, water and sanitary facilities. Madras offers the majority of lodging choices.

Riders will start and finish in downtown Madras, the seat of Jefferson County, with a population of 6,250. Riding 1 mile gets cyclists out of downtown into beautiful agricultural country.

Depending on riders’ fitness level and pace, the ride will take between two and three hours to complete. Riders looking for an additional challenge can add an extra mile up to the top of Round Butte or down to Lake Billy Chinook in The Cove Palisades State Park.

More Resources

Find more to see and do near this Bikeway at Sisters Country or Visit Central Oregon.

The Cove Palisades State Park near Culver offers RV camping and showers. Please note that to access the park you’ll have to travel down a very steep, long hill from the bikeway.

Important Traffic Information:

In addition to, please contact the Jefferson County Public Works department at 541-475-4459 for current information about road conditions.

Scenic Bikeway routes often include roads with car and truck traffic. Although the Bikeways are routed on low-traffic and low-speed roads whenever possible, most are designated for cyclists that are comfortable riding in some amount of traffic. For traffic-free riding, please check out the Tualatin Valley Scenic Bikeway section north of Banks and the first half of the Covered Bridges Scenic Bikeway.

Photos of this Ride


  1. Stunning mountain views, farm fields and quiet roads make this a dream ride. You can easily extend the miles by cycling any of the country roads in
    the area. Route has no shade, so plan accordingly. Madras has some bike routes around town with stellar views as well. El Rio restaurant is a real gem.

  2. SW Bear Drive is getting a facelift, about mile marker 3 on the Bikeway map. The road will be closed to all traffic including bicycles June 22nd- 23rd. On other dates there is a “road closed” sign (at Belmont, about mile 3, after railroad tracks). You can ride through it. Expect gravel patches. It is scheduled to be repaved and completed by end of June.

  3. Carrot blossoms are just starting (6/22/15). Jefferson Co. grows 75% of the US grown hybrid carrot seed crop! The sweet aroma is just one olfactory delight along the route (freshly cut alfalfa, lavender, sage, peppermint and garlic are others).

  4. August 28-29 is the terrific Air Show of the Cascades ( Come ride the scenic bikeway on Friday, enjoy the Airshow, stay over & visit the Madras Saturday Market, ride more!

  5. We loved this bike ride. Beautiful farm land with towering mountains in the backdrop, followed by a canyon with deep green water, and desert landscape! This ride was spectacular! Bring sunscreen!

  6. Note that there may not be much water on the route. When we rode it on June 27, 2017, there was no water at the park in Madras and Round Butte Overlook Park was closed. That means Culver is the only place besides Madras you can stop and refill water bottles

  7. Fantastic ride even for a first time biker. The views were amazing and varied: farm land, small towns, mountain vistas & Lake Billy Chinook. Elevation challenges were a little rough toward the end of the ride but, I was in no hurry and just took my time. This was the second highlight of my trip – the first – TOTALITY! Many thanks to the town and incredibly nice people of Madras for hosting us.

  8. Glad it was a great experience! There are some fantastic views on this route; now get out and try some other Bikeways…

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