When’s the start
July 6th 8AM
What’s the ethos?
Race unsupported, leave no trace. Can’t win? Have fun!
It’s more about moving quickly when the time is right and that varies from person to person. This is a very laid back ordeal and finish line celebrations are the primary goal.
Why this route?
This is a fixed route out of Portland with two “checkpoints”. The first being the Summit of Steens and the second being the rim of Crater Lake (Mt. Mazama), the highest paved and unpaved roads in the state of Oregon. It’s gravel connections are essential for submitting Steens and for a quicker escape from Frenchglen to Lakeview. Then it’s the direct route to Crater Lake and then a bit more meandering back to Portland. We can tell you that you need to see Steens and Crater Lake, but you’ll need to figure out why for yourself.
What size tires?
It’s roughly 10 percent gravel, it’s bad washboarded gravel. The last few miles up Steens will probably find you walking the bike. Last year’s winner finished on 25mm tires, but a 32 is probably more typical. We encourage experimentation with wider tires.
What’s the weather like?
It can be all over the place, heat will likely be in the forecast, but storms of all sorts can happen to send temperatures to freezing at elevation. You’ll likely be able to see any of these coming in the forecast with some skill and luck. Weather in Oregon in July is typically “mild” but it’s a very diverse state and everything on the Eastern side of the Cascade range is subject to extremes.
How’s the vehicle traffic?
Riding out of Portland is comparatively mild compared to most US cities and the jaunt to Detroit Lake is serene. After that however, Highway 20 over Santiam Pass to Burns is a weird scary road not for the faint of heart, if you think you can survive the main pass over the mountains with little to no shoulder and central Oregon traffic then you’ll be through the “worst” of it. It’s always worth stating that anything can happen anywhere. The road to Burns also offers little to no shoulder with the rumble strip from hell that seems to go on forever. There’s really not much choice otherwise to get to Burns and Steens, the only option being to the North and altering the mileage of the route considerably. Seriously, it’s a ride into the gut of nowhere, to a town called, of all things, Burns, the road gets rough but the traffic gets light, keep your wits about you and you can jump over the rumble strip whenever the traffic comes by. After you make it to Burns you’re roughly 1/3rd of the way in and the really remote portion of the ride begins, after that traffic is light but not accustomed to seeing bicycles. As someone who lives in Portland, I can say that it’s pretty great.
What is the Frenchglen hotel?
You’ve probably never heard of Frenchglen, nor heard of the hotel there which is actually owned by Oregon State Parks. Let me tell you that if you make it there, that it will be one of the most memorable spots encountered. The racers end up here one way or another for breakfast, dinner, a room, however if you want to eat you’ll need to make a reservation. Rooms are fairly priced for what’s being offered. It’s worth noting that they put up with all of the stinky bikers coming through they’re extraordinarily hospitable. We encourage everyone to approach the Frenchglen Hotel and its staff with respect, they provide fantastic services and you’ll not forget visiting there whether by choice or necessity.
Can I book a hotel before the race starts on route?
No. Although once the race has started you may book a hotel.
Do I need to buy Third Party Travel and/or Liability Insurance?
It’s worth looking into if you put the risks into perspective and consider those who love you. If you think both planned and unplanned adventures are in your future, it’s worth considering. That said, we do not require it, the choice is up to you.
Are there fees?
Yes two, an entry fee and spot rental/hosting fee due when the race nears.
What does the entry fee cover?
Your entry, your results if you finish, and of course the continuation of the race. Provided you’re all signed up I’m happy to answer just about any question you have via email provided it’s not a daily sort of thing!
What does the spot rental/hosting fee cover?
Rental of a Spot Tracker and or/hosting of personal tracking service
Which is cheaper, renting or owning on Spot Tracker?
For this race renting is the cheaper option, the price for rental is normally around $50. If you already own your own tracker there is still a hosting fee due to be a part of the race.
How do I rent a tracker or get my own tracker hosted?
We’ll send you a link in the weeks before the race to register with Trackleaders. We are your point of contact for this.
What’s the entry fee?
$75 USD, nonrefundable
When does sign up close?
You’ll need to make up your mind by early June so think about it if you’re on the fence. The sign up window is very wide for this race.
How do I sign up?
You’ll need to print the agreements, sign both pages, scan and e-mail them to SteensMazama1000@gmail.com You’ll be sent an invoice via Paypal. Once again you’ll have until June to fully commit.
I still have questions, who do I contact?
For any and all questions please e-mail Nathan Jones at SteensMazama1000@gmail.com