Bend Training Routes

Here you will find gravel routes, near Bend, Oregon, that do not meet our 5 Star criteria (but are still really fun to ride) or have not been fully investigated by us. Many of the routes on this page have been contributed by local Bend riders.

The descriptions are brief, the mapping detail is less and the route accuracy is not guaranteed.  Please leave us a comment regarding the route you did and what you thought.  Thanks!


Map Legend

Black = unknown surface type
Red = paved road
Brown = gravel / dirt road
Blue = single track
Purple = paved bike path / roubaix

Big Big Red

A longer version of Big Red that is easily accessible from Bend. We really like this route before Memorial Day and after Labor Day. During the summer, it has a “pinball wizard” feeling as you navigate through Sunriver. We anticipate this becoming a 5 Star ride once COTA completes the new mountain biking trails just to the west of Sunriver. We continue to work this route, making subtle but significant changes. Last update: October, 2019. By Captain “O”.
Dumbbell: 50 miles / 1300 ft gain / ~ 65 % gravel
Difficulty: Moderate
The Start: Intersection of Conklin road (FS 41) and Benham Falls road
GPX file / TCX file

Bust Your Butte Gravel Challenge 2018

The 2018 gravel race course in and around the China Hat / Horse Butte area. “Some great smooth gravel, some not so great cinder gravel and thick pumice sand and washboard gravel. That’s what you get on a gravel ride! Epic views.” JenK.   Recommended early spring / late fall when the washboard is less.
Lollipop: 53 miles / 2600 ft gain / ~ 70 % gravel
Difficulty: Moderate
The Start: Horse Butte trailhead parking area
Cue Sheet / TCX file

Dropbar

A ride that strings together some of the best mountain bike trails in the area to ride on a drop bar gravel bike. The Mrazek sections is a “frickin” fabulous flowy downhill. By DennisK. Recommended spring through late fall. The route is not subject to extreme moon dust like some of other mountain bike trails in the dead of summer.
Loop: 29 miles / 1900 ft gain / ~ 47.5% gravel, 38% single tack, 2 % paved bike path, 12.5% paved
Difficulty: Moderate
The Start: Roundabout at Mt. Washington and Skyliners Road
Cue Sheet / GPX file / TCX file

Eastside Tour

A great spring / fall training ride. The beginning and ending terrain dictates a slower pace, but the middle section of the ride can be as fast and hard as your desire. By Captain “O”.
Lollipop: 43 miles / 1500 ft gain / ~ 25% gravel, 10% single track, 5% bike path
Difficulty: Moderate
The Start: Drake park
Cue Sheet / GPX file / TCX file

Fifty 50

A short training route that is easy to get to and with good variety to work technical skills. A go to route when time is limited. By CP.
Lollipop: 21 miles / 1200 ft gain / ~ 45% gravel, 20% single track, 15% paved bike path
Difficulty: Moderate
The Start: Northwest Crossing roundabout
Cue Sheet / GPX file / TCX file

H2O

A quick ride just west of Bend with a cool little bit of single-track that is rarely ridden. Note: Sometimes there’s a closed gate as you just finish the climb up through Miller Tree Fram. It’s a 50/50 chance of being closed and there’s no easy way to get around besides dropping down into Shevlin Park. By Gravel Girl.
Loop: 19 miles / 1200 ft gain / ~ 85 % gravel (noted in brown on the map)
Difficulty: Easier+
The Start: Northwest Crossing roundabout
Cue Sheet / GPX file / TCX file

Lower Bridge (Gravel)

A great late fall, winter, early spring route. Without moisture, the “moon dust” on Barr road can be brutal. Also, Barr road has a 3 mile section of “pump and chunk”.  But this is a great training route that takes in many elements of other routes like Alpaca, Westside Tour and H2O. By Captain “O”.
Loop: 77 miles / 3100 ft gain / ~ 40 % gravel
Difficulty: Moderate+
The Start: Northwest Crossing roundabout
Cue Sheet / GPX file / TCX file

Mean Todd Rides Again!

A mixed route with a bit of gnar (see it, InMotion) near Todd Lake. This route rides best when there is a bit of moisture in the ground. Dry = Very Dusty. Ugh! Possible water at Mt. Bachelor and Skyline Lodge. By “McGyver”.
Loop: 51 miles / 4600 ft gain / ~ 60% gravel (noted in brown on the map)
Difficulty: Moderate+
The Start: Phil’s Trailhead
Cue Sheet / TCX file

Mt. Bachelor Loop

A new way to ride around Mt. Bachelor with some gravel.  Water at Lava Lake Resort and Elk River resort. By “McGyver”.
Loop: 51 Miles / 3800 ft gain / ~ 35 % gravel (noted in brown on the map)
Difficulty: Moderate
The Start: ~ 0.5 miles east of Meissner Sno-Park
Cue Sheet / TCX file

Paul’s Route

A route that takes in east and west Bend. The Horse Butte area + Deschutes River trail area. By PaulB.
Loop: 43 Miles / 1900 ft gain / 35 % gravel unknown
Difficulty: Moderate
The Start: Farewell Bend park
Cue Sheet / TCX file

Trade Wars

We like this ride on a warm spring day when the snow has melted out below 6000 feet. There are several peak a boo views of the mountains to the west, but the ride is mostly in the forest. It makes for a great early season training route when you want to get a bit of consistent climbing in your legs (2000 feet in 15 miles) and … it can easily be lengthened by starting in town and riding Brookswood to and from the start (+ 15 miles). Note, the roads need a bit of moisture otherwise there can be a significant amount of “moon dust“. By DennisK.
Loop: 32 miles / 2200 ft gain
Surface: ~ 90% gravel, 10% paved
Difficulty: Easier+
The Start: Near intersection of China Hat road and Knott road
Lat / Long: 43.986163, -121.303900
Cue Sheet / GPX file / TCX file

2 thoughts on “Bend Training Routes”

  1. Thanks Michael … Alpaca is a great ride for winter because it should stay low enough to be ice free. Thanks for dropping us a line … hard for us to think about cold temps. Going to 94 tomorrow in Tasmania so we will be on SUPs. Happy trails! And congrats for getting out there in the winter! We’ve also heard that Ghost of Ashwood is running great.

  2. Rode Alpaca yesterday and had a blast. I’m no expert on riding conditions around here but aside from a little bit of manageable ice it rode great. I really appreciate all these routes and the season recommendations. ?????

Leave a Reply

Scroll to Top