The area north of Highway 26 is well-known throughout the Portland Metro region as not only a great motorcycling destination, but is also home of the American Diabetes Association “Tour De Cure” bicycle ride. The sights, sounds and smells are even more pronounced on a bicycle than on a motorcycle ride. I’ve participated in this charity event the last few years which has several ride routes though North Plains. In fact, the Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) provides funds as part of their “Discover Oregon Scenic Byways” program and several of the roads in this area benefit from a disproportionate amount of funds.
I started out on Shadybrook Road doing what I’d call the “North Plains Ramble” which leads through farmland and quiet, winding, rural roads. Then we headed up Dorland Road, then traversed back east on Skyline Blvd. The casual country atmosphere was a perfect setting for sweeping views, and the occasional Alpaca ranch and equestrian farm.
Whenever I travel this route I feel grateful to have escaped the urban development for a small time-slice to enjoy the solitude and landscape. And if you long for a large backyard, but live in a studio/condo then the ‘ol school “Skyline Tavern” is something that should be on your must visit to-do list. It’s somewhat hidden in the forest growth on a curvy part of Skyline Blvd., but has a huge patio, horse shoe pits, darts and plenty of cold refreshments! It’s one of those locales that has survived for eons because of the charm of the place.
If you want to put a smile on your face then I suggest that you head out to this area on your motorcycle!