Rode Sandy Ridge last weekend, what a great place! But I don’t understand why we can’t build the same type of experience in Forest Park. It’s largely a second growth forest with plenty of room, not advocating for bikes to be allowed on the Wildwood. I’m a lifelong Portlander, and use Forest Park at least 3x a week for walking/running/riding, and have for 35 years. I understand it’s a sacred place to Portlanders, but any rational person should realize that we could build trails for bikes in it!
such a big question. We’ve been fighting for years to make this happen. NW Trail Alliance has spent so many hours on this issue and many in the community are frustrated and fed up and tired.
In short: Politics and NIMBY influence. People who have an irrational hatred of biking in the park will literally stop at nothing to get their way. They have lied and perpetuated false narratives that have paralyzed the process and we haven’t had the political/bureaucratic leadership to push through all the B.S. Meanwhile, NWTA has focused on other projects and has done absolutely amazing work around the region (Rocky Point, Stub, Sandy) and within their organization to grow and prosper.
Perhaps the time is right again to start a renewed push for progress. Just keep in mind that some people will do everything in their power to prevent improved bike access in the park. BS lawsuits, lies, media manipulation… anything to prevent change and maintain the status quo. It’s a broken system!
Forest Park should absolutely be improved for cycling access. No question in my mind. The fact that we’ve made no progress is an embarrassing reality that we all live with everyday.
For more on the topic, it’s been written about dozens of times on BP through the years… Here are the archives --> https://bikeportland.org/tag/mountain-bikes-in-forest-park
I’m happy to try and answer specific questions about it.
It’s certainly a shame. There’s plenty of real estate, especially north of Germantown where there’s slightly less foot traffic. It would need a lot of constant trail work, but would be a pretty incredible location. I trail run, bike, and walk my dog in the park 3-4 times a week and feel that there is plenty of space to build new trails that barely interfere with existing paths.
That said, I recently got an NWTA membership and am looking forward to finally getting up to Rocky Point. Though I’m a little hesitant about riding there on my own (even with Trailforks) for the first time without someone who knows the trails - maybe there is a good samaritan out there who wants to show a newbie around
Thanks for the info. So disappointing… you look at Boise, Bend, Little Rock, LA/Orange County, Spokane, on and on… cities that actually care about being bike friendly and have embraced mt biking. What’s possibly wrong with using the city’s assets to create a healthier population enjoying a clean outdoor sport? Has anyone looked into the Walton brothers from Arkansas… weren’t they working with cities to promote mountain biking thru some foundation they setup?