The Big One6
5 Star Route / Ridden and Reviewed by Captain ‘O’
“Living in the Wild, Wild West” must include a gravel ride through Warm Springs Indian Reservation with a visit to the majestic Lake Simtustus.
If you’ve done other Dirty Freehub rides along Lake Simtustus (Over the Rainbow, Path of Totality) you know it’s a hidden gem …. but the whole point of this ride is to visit the super cool part of the lake.
This “out and back” route starts at the boat launch on the Deschutes River in Warm Springs. The first two-thirds of the route is rolling hills, with big views, good pavement and little traffic. You pass by sporadic farms, an old defunct church and through un-fenced lands where wild mustangs graze. Be careful of the wild horses as their behavior is unpredictable. **Read More
At thirteen miles out you reach a gravel road with an intimidating “16% grade ahead” sign. This is where you blast down to the lake, albeit on a grade that averages 8 to 10%, not 16%. Take the time to enjoy the views, explore a bit, and wonder at the geology.
On your return, you’ll appreciate that the gravel section is a stair stepper climb.
To learn more about the Warm Springs reservation, we recommend that you head on over to the museum on your way back home.
When on the reservation, PLEASE obey the signs that mark the roads that are private to the tribe. Ok, let’s skip the please … DO NOT ride on the roads that are CLEARLY marked as private. DO NOT be a hooplehead.
Adventure / Gravel Route
– Out & Back: 31 miles / 2500 ft gain
– Surface: ~ 20% gravel, 80% paved
– eBike Friendly: Yes
– Location: ~ Madras, Oregon
– Published: March 2019
Moderate. Rolling hills, with one gravel pitch of a mile that is ~ 10% with a short section of 16%.
When we like to ride this …
… when all are other rides in Central Oregon are a no go. This ride goes almost all year round. It is very scenic in the spring and fall. In the summer it can be combined with a float / paddle down the Deschutes River to Trout Creek.
Warm Springs boat ramp on the east side of the Deschutes River off of State Highway 26. Pit toilets.
Lat / Long: 44.758287, -121.226904
Food / Water
Red = paved road
Brown = gravel / dirt road