The best paved bike trails around Oregon offer car-free relaxation

Bear Creek Greenway

As awesome as this southern Oregon trail is, the BCG is not widely known around the state. Yet this 21-mile multiuse path, situated on a corridor along the lush Bear Creek streambed, is well-worth exploring. As a pedestrian and cyclist thruway from Ashland north to Central Point, the path provides huge benefits to surrounding communities, both for transportation and recreation.

Being relatively flat and mostly paved, the Bear Creek Greenway passes seven parks where you can whip out a sandwich and kick back. Alternatively, you can stop by the James Beard nominated New Sammy’s Cowboy Bistro just off the trail in Talent.

Springwater Corridor

A sunny day attracts a menagerie of people to the Springwater Corridor trail. Kids on scoot bikes, long-distance runners, friends lollygagging and drinking bubble tea, cyclists in Lycra race kits on their way to the West Hills and skateboarders all share this multiuse path.

Stretching from Southeast Ivon Street in Portland for 20 miles to Boring, the Springwater is a flat path that passes treasured natural spaces like the Oaks Bottom Wildlife Refuge and Powell Butte Nature Park. As part of the proposed 40-mile Loop trails in and around Portland, the Springwater Corridor stars as one of the city’s highlights.

Heads up to beginners: On sunny weekends the trail can be crowded, which requires more bike handling — and courtesy — skills.

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