Oakridge, OR bills itself as the “mountain biking capital of the Northwest” and while we haven’t ridden there yet ourselves, they have a pretty good argument so far. With more than 500 miles of singletrack in the mountains outside town I’d say that puts Oakridge in serious contention for the mountain biking capital of not just the Northwest but the entire US. I know, I know, other towns like Moab have more famous trails but where else can you find 500 miles of legal singletrack?
What makes Oakridge even more compelling to mountain bikers is the local brew scene. In my mind beer and biking go hand-in-hand and the Northwest is typically known for some great microbrews. The article I read mentions the Brewers Union Local 180 brewpub where they make their own cask-conditioned ale – tasty.
Oakridge presents a great model for other areas around the country that have been hit hard by job losses due to dying industries. Local business owners are realizing mountain bikers are willing to travel to ride great dirt and we typically spend a few bucks to do it (not to mention the bar tab!).
One Oakridge City Council member predicts the Oakridge MTB scene will really blow up in 2-5 years so plan your trip now to beat the crowds!