Wheels Outside the Garden--Eugene, Oregon Bike Trails

(Under construction)

* Introduction * Wheels in the Garden * Garden Trails *

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Eugene's Ruth Bascom Riverbank Path System rides like an extension of the river itself, wandering along both sides of the Williamette for miles and crossing on five bike bridges.

Larry begins on the Owosso bridge near the north end of the trail system. He is riding his Greenspeed Anura in early February.

Much of the trail is concrete. Here drain lines have been cut to keep water from pooling on the riding surface. They also keep unsuspended recumbent riders from falling asleep.


Drains are not enough in some areas. When the river floods, gates close off this section of the trail. A short detour through a residential area make riding still possible.

You might have been wondering about the elaborate fencing along the bike trail. In some places it seems like you are riding through a drive-through zoo. In fact, it is a barrier to separate the various kinds of animals.

There was much resistance to building this section of the trail. When the general public finally won out, these iron fences were constructed to protect residents of a wealthy subdivision from bikers, joggers, and moms with strollers.

The condo complex here actually owns the waterfront, and needed some insualation from these dangerous elements, so this electronic sliding gate was installed, along with a crosswalk over the bike trail. The keypad at the top of the picture allows residents access, and then closes the gate behind them. They are then free to sit on their little bench and enjoy the river.

(It is possible that the bench was placed to close to the fence, since children might be able to reach through and grab them.)

The river bike trails winds by the Delta Ponds and Williamette River Habitat Enhancement areas. These waterways support diverse wildlife, particularly birds. Cycling is a way to visit these areas with minimal impact on the animals living there.

Eugene has done well to preserve large wetland tracts that adjoin malls, commercial districts, and urban housing.

An elevated trail takes you over one wetland, providing continuous views of the riverine habitat.

Here, an egret perches on a log in the marshes. Herons, ducks, geese, eagles, and many smaller birds share the space.

Larry studies a hand and two gloves beneath the DeFazio bridge.

The DeFazio bridge is one of the most fascinating bike bridges in the country, and testimony to the fact that Eugene is willing to invest in multi-use paths. Spiral stairs complement a spiral riding ramp to this unique suspension bridge.

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