Vista Bridge to Council Crest Park

Cycle Portland, Road Ride, Vista Bridge to Council Crest Park

This bike ride will take you through some terrific residential neighborhoods to the highest point in Portland and through two campuses before bringing you back to the Goose Hollow MAX station. You’ll travel through the campus of the Oregon Health and Science University built on the hillside, and then through Portland State University campus.


Paved streets, some bike lanes.


Quiet residential neighborhoods, narrow streets. Traffic becomes heavier in downtown Portland.


By car, take SW Broadway, right onto SW Taylor Street, left onto SW Ninth Avenue. Continue onto SW Park Avenue and right onto SW Jefferson Street. Goose Hollow MAX station is at the bottom of the hill. On-street parking.

By public transportation, from downtown Portland take any TriMet MAX Red or Blue line train toward Hillsboro or Beaverton or any bus traveling along Jefferson Street.

Food and Drink

The popular Goose Hollow Inn is located at the start and end of your ride. There are drinking fountains at the summit of Council Crest, but no restrooms. A plethora of food and drink are available at Saturday Farmers Market.

Side Trip

Duniway Lilac Park is a great location for a picnic on your return to downtown Portland. On SW Jefferson Street is the Portland Art Museum and the Oregon Historical Society, both of which are well worth a visit.


More Details

The summit of Council Crest is well worth the hill climb where you get a breath-taking view of Portland and surrounding areas on a clear day. Council Crest is thought to be the highest point in Portland and boasts a fabulous view of the city and of five mountain peaks in the Cascade Range — Mounts Hood, St. Helens, Adams, Jefferson, and Rainier. Bike riding into downtown Portland can be unnerving as you weave among the cars on SW Sixth Avenue, so a diversion through the campus of Portland State University is a great way to avoid the traffic.


Ride Log

  • 0.0 Start at the Goose Hollow MAX station and travel south on SW Jefferson St toward the Vista Bridge.
  • 0.1 Right onto SW 20th Ave.
  • 0.2 Left onto SW Main St.
  • 0.3 Dog leg right at SW King Ave to remain on SW Main St.
  • 0.4 Left onto SW Vista Ave. Cross the Vista Bridge directly ahead.
  • 0.8 Right onto SW Montgomery Dr; this road takes a couple of turns that are easy to miss where other streets connect. Montgomery turns to the right at SW 21st Ave and turns right again at SW Myrtle St.
  • 2.0 Left onto SW Patton Rd. Ride one block.
  • 2.1 Right onto SW Greenway Ave. Hug the curb next to the wooden sidewalk and do not be confused when a couple of other streets join SW Greenway Ave.
  • 2.7 Continue straight onto SW Council Crest Dr. Ride the sidewalk to enter the summit that is surrounded by a short stone wall. Leave the summit via the same sidewalk and exit the park to the right down SW Council Crest Dr to the stop sign.
  • 3.4 Left onto SW Greenway Ave.
  • 3.7 Left onto SW Talbot Terrace.
  • 3.9 Sharp left onto SW Fairmount Blvd at the stop sign.
  • 6.2 Right onto SW Marquam Hill Rd. This road turns into SW Gibbs St. Ride through the OHSU campus.
  • 7.1 Right onto SW Campus Dr.
  • 7.9 Left onto SW Terwilliger Blvd at the stop sign and leave the OHSU campus.
  • 8.1 Right to continue on SW Terwilliger Blvd where SW Sam Jackson Park Rd meets Terwilliger at the traffic light and head toward downtown Portland. At SW Sheridan St, Terwilliger becomes SW Sixth Ave. Ride down the hill into downtown Portland keeping to the left lane.
  • 8.8 Left onto SW Harrison St through Portland State University campus.
  • 8.9 Right onto the South Park Blocks through the campus.
  • 9.2 Left onto SW Jefferson St.
  • 9.7 At the bottom of the hill, return to the Goose Hollow MAX station. End ride.
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    15.337 km / 9.53 mi

    Total Distance

    425 m / 1,396 ft

    Total Ascent

    425 m / 1,396 ft

    Total Descent

    327 m / 1,074 ft

    Highest Point

    Ride type:
    Mountain biking
    Road riding
    Kid friendly
    Rail Trail
    Difficulty: Beginner (Green)
    Ride Duration: <1 hr
    Fitness Level: Medium
    Shared Bike Path - Paved
    Shared Bike Path - Dirt
    On-Road Bike Lane
    Off-Road - Fire Trail
    Off-Road - Rail Trail
    Off-Road - Single Track
    Off-Road - Downhill
    Mobile Coverage: Excellent
    Estimated Distance: 9.7
    Elevation Gain: 1538
    First Aid
    Bike hire
    Bike servicing
    Accessible by bike
    Accessible by car
    Accessible by public transport
    Accessible by shuttle / uber
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