North coast mountain bike trails open

Oregon’s newest trail system designed specifically for mountain biking is now open to riders. With three miles completed of a proposed larger trail system, the trails begin at Klootchy Creek County Park and lead into Lewis & Clark Timberlands, managed by GreenWood Resources.

A ribbon-cutting event on July 20, 2019, celebrated the official opening of the trail system and an innovative partnership between Lewis & Clark Timberlands, Northwest Trail Alliance and Clatsop County that brought the new recreational amenity to life.

“Prior to this project, there were no mountain biking trails on the North Oregon Coast,” said Steven Blakesley, North Coast Trail Alliance, a local chapter of Northwest Trail Alliance. “Mountain biking is a rapidly growing sport and visitors to the coast come here expecting to find trails. This new system fulfills a badly needed resource for visitors and locals.”

 In 2018, Lewis & Clark Timberlands and the Northwest Trail Alliance struck an agreement to allow the creation of a system of mountain bike trails on local forestland. The entrance is located at Klootchy Creek County Park, approximately two miles east of the Highway 26/Highway 101 Junction.

“From the very beginning the partnership between Lewis & Clark Timberlands and the North Coast Trail Alliance, the goal was to create a healthy form of recreation for families in the community,” said David Dougherty, Area Forester of Lewis & Clark Timberlands. “By bringing visitors and community members into the forest, they get a chance to see firsthand the beauty in their backyard, all while enjoying a safe, healthy, and family-oriented form of recreation.”

The project originated after a chance encounter between Dougherty and a member of North Coast Trail Alliance, where Dougherty suggested using the Lewis & Clark Timberlands property for a network of mountain biking trails. Klootchy Creek was proposed as the trail head, due to its orientation and existing parking area.

Together, the organizations mapped out potential trails and improvements to the park. A trail from the parking area in Klootchy County Park now accesses the LCT property directly to avoid chance encounters with vehicles on the gravel roads. Built almost entirely with volunteer labor, there are one-way trails both uphill and downhill, and the trails are mountain bike-specific for rider safety.

“So far, the feedback from riders has been phenomenal,” continued Chris Quackenbush, North Coast Trail Alliance. “GreenWood has been a fantastic partner in getting this system underway. In honor of their support, our group has decided to name the climbing trail, or the beginning of the ride and the trail system, GreenWood, to acknowledge their role in creating something so exciting.”  

Riders will need to obtain a free recreational permit to access the trail system but will not be charged any fees. For permit information, visit permits.greenwoodresources.com.  

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