?What really sets Bend, Oregon apart from other mountain towns is its unique geological history—or rather the fact that, as Adam Craig says, “Pretty much everything around here exploded at some point.” From the trail network surrounding town to Mt. Bachelor’s lift-serviced runs to the rowdy trails on Cline Butte, Bend’s dirt and landscape provide a variety of riding, most of which is only a few minutes out the backdoor.
Beyond the riding, Bend has an outdoor culture that is ingrained into its roots. People live here because of its year-round opportunities for all things active. The number of professional athletes (and not just bikers) who call Bend home is a testimony to the town’s draw, and the amount of effort that has been put into their trails is a reflection of the entire community’s commitment. The combination of access and opportunity make one thing certain; it’s impossible to be bored in Bend.
Next Exit is a series dedicated to exploring communities around North America that have embraced the mountain bike lifestyle. Small towns are dreaming big when it comes to the issues that surround our sport, from tourism to advocacy to land management. Their efforts are redefining what a mountain town can be, keeping our culture—and trails—alive and well.