Oregon Outback Scenic Bikeway
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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 tripcheck.com, 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
The 90-mile Oregon Outback Scenic Bikeway is a wonderful cycling challenge filled with opportunities for wildlife viewing and quiet solitude. You’re not too far from food and a pillow as you pedal your way through this unknown slice of Oregon that few have heard of and far fewer have visited.
You’ll find food, lodging, camping and friendly people in the vibrant southern Oregon town of Lakeview, which serves as the start and end of the Bikeway. Forest Service campgrounds are dotted along the route, and the tiny town of Plush also has camping and lodging.
The route is nestled in the beautiful Warner Mountains, located where the forested Cascades meet the high desert basin and range. High peaks, sheer cliffs, gorgeous lakes and ample solitude are yours to savor and share with pronghorn antelope, wetland birds, bighorn sheep and sage grouse. Keep your eyes on the road as you descend 1,300 to the desert outpost of Plush, where the only store in town has a faded sign above the store proclaiming it a “Quiet Little Drinking Town with a Cow Problem.”
Enjoy the rolling landscape along Hart and Crump lakes as you share the open spaces with bighorn sheep and sand hill cranes. In the midst of these vast landscapes and sheer cliffs, a narrow canyon brings you past Deep Creek Falls, with cliff swallows, eagles and falcons flying above.
This ride is best enjoyed in spring and fall. Lakes gorged with spring snowmelt draw migrating birds and wildlife and give life to wildflowers. The fall -mating season coaxes antelope and mule deer out in the open and closer to the road for easier viewing, and the brilliant yellow of quaking aspen light up the hillsides.
Motorized Vehicle Traffic: Light to moderate
Seasons: Year-round if a mild winter; otherwise spring to fall
To get more information on visiting the area, contact the Lake County Chamber.
Lakeview offers multiple lodging options, including the designated bike-friendly Junipers Reservoir RV Resort, which will shuttle cyclists from town; there is also a lodging property in Adel. Find a listing of area campgrounds here.
Important Traffic Information
In addition to TripCheck.com, please contact the Lake County Road Department at 541-947-6048 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.