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Spin an epic route - not for the faint of leg - through miles of incredible scenery. Ride from the athlete-and-brewpub mecca of Bend, Oregon east through the otherworldly region of the Painted Hills and John Day Fossil Beds. Tackle the peaks and valleys of the Strawberry Mountain Wilderness. Relax at Wallowa Lake. Ride Oregon's famously smooth bike-friendly roads through Eagle Cap Wilderness, Hell's Canyon...and the high pastures of central Idaho. Wow!
National Parks on This Tour: John Day Fossil Beds National Monument
Meet us in Bend, Oregon. Ride from the Painted Hills up and over a pass to meet the John Day River. Cruise into tiny Monument
Just outside the town of Bend, start off with a bang. Ride from the Painted Hills up and over a pass to meet the John Day River. Cruise down into the tiny town of Monument (pop: 128). 76.9 mi +4624 ft / -4651 ft
Ride Spray, Monument and Long Creek. Head south to John Day and Prairie City. 65 miles.
Take a warm-up ride through orchards and ranches bordering the John Day River. Begin climbing as the scenery changes dramatically: twisty roads wind upward to a land of colorful rocks and soils filled with carefully stored fossils. Are you still on the same planet? Continue riding out of the martian landscape into juniper forests, ghost towns, then forests of ponderosa pine. Enjoy a long descent into the town of John Day. Savor beautiful views of the Strawberry Mountain Wilderness as you cruise a flat final stretch into Prairie City.
Ride an Old West Scenic Bikeway Loop: Prairie City to the John Day River, then back to Prairie City - 113 miles.
Start your day cruising a long downhill on the eastern half of the Old West Scenic Bikeway. From the 8-mile mark to the 56-mile mark, the 40-mile downhill stretches along the Middle Fork of the John Day River. Climb out of the valley on a leg-burning uphill. The views are worth it: open terrain offers long views of distant hills and farms. Back on the tail end of yesterday's ride, cruise the final leg into Prairie City.
Prairie City to Baker City: 3 high Blue Mountain passes in 67 miles.
Climb 3 high passes today, though the southern Blue Mountains past mostly deserted towns and quiet places. Scenery is spectacularly gorgeous; riding is challenging. Descend into Baker City, a one-time gold rush town surrounded by the snowcapped peaks.
Elgin to Joseph - wow, what a ride! 50-ish miles.
Shuttle to the quiet side of the hills this morning. Bicycle beside the twists and turns of the Wallowa River as it skirts the foothills of the Wallowa Mountains of northeastern Oregon's Columbia Plateau. Closer to today’s destination, the views open up to farmland interspersed with occasional glimpses of Eagle Cap Peak. Round a corner - and suddenly you're in full view of Wallowa Lake and the Eagle Cap Wilderness. Chief Joseph Mountain and its neighbors - 30 peaks topping out at over 8,000 feet - tower overhead. Breathtaking! Watch for deer and eagles as you ride the lake shore to Wallowa Lake Lodge. Spend the next two nights enjoying spectacular views of the mountains and the tall pines.
Explore Joseph. Ride the Wallowa Lake Tramway. Swim, hike, rent a canoe or paddleboard. Go for a ride. Or stay put and soak up the scent of the pines.
Take today off (there's plenty to see here.) Take a ride up the Wallowa Lake Tramway - possibly the easiest way to climb 3,700 feet! Swim, hike, or rent a canoe or paddleboard. Explore the town of Joseph's art galleries, shops and museums. Sample the offerings at the chocolate factory and several local breweries. Or spend the day enjoying the lodge and watching the deer on the lawn. Prefer to ride? There are two very good options: a mountain bike ride from the tramway down or a road ride to Imnaha with a 30 mile descent...followed by a 30 mile climb.
Joseph to Hells Canyon, North America's deepest river gorge. Ride down, then up again to Halfway - 70 miles total.
Ride from Joseph into the Hells Canyon Wilderness today. Climb the high Wallowa Mountain Loop / Hells Canyon Scenic Byway to the Hells Canyon Overlook. Peer down the deepest river gorge in North America. Snap a few incredible photos. Ride down to the river at the bottom, then climb up again to Halfway. Stay tonight at Pine Valley Lodge.
Cross the Snake River and Hells Canyon. Ride Payette National Forest and into McCall - 100+ miles.
Cross the Snake River at the bottom of Hells Canyon today. Climb out again into Payette National Forest, where tamarack and pine forest trade places with wide plains. Bicycle to the lake resort town of McCall for a wonderful dinner on the last night of this truly epic tour.
Ride the forested plains from McCall to Boise.
This last morning, ride through Idaho's high forested plains as you make your way south for one more long descent. Enjoy a finale celebration before the short shuttle into Boise.
As an optional extra, a person traveling solo on any inn-to-inn trip may reserve a room for his or her exclusive use. This will guarantee you a private room and private bath every night. Unlike other tour companies, if you're willing to share a room, there is no extra charge for coming solo, no matter when you sign up for the tour - even if you wind up with a private room by default.