IMBA EPIC Ride - North Umpqua, Oregon

North Umpqua, Oregon

Overview

If you like endless singletrack through old growth forests in the Pacific Northwest, then North Umpqua is for you. The route is a long-distance adventure best ridden in sections or over the course of multiple days with a support vehicle. For the hearty and fit, the route can be done in two days. For those who have the time, 4-5 days is very enjoyable. 

This IMBA EPIC route is located near the southern terminus of the mighty Cascade Range and features a dramatic landscape following the North Umpqua River.

Anglers - don't forget your rod and reel. There are plenty of excellent opportunities to get in the river and fish after an awesome day of riding.

Access

There are 10 major trailheads that provide access to the trail. It can be ridden in either direction. To go upriver start at the Swiftwater Trailhead. To go downriver start at the Kelsay Valley Trailhead. Downriver is a mostly downhill version of the trail and perhaps the most fun. 

Food and drink

Campgrounds with facilities are plentiful along the route - one reason to make this a multi-day adventure. Supplies can be picked up along the way as needed.

More details

The North Umpqua is broken down into sections, no more than 16 miles in length.

White Mule to Kelsay Valley 

The eastern most (bicycle friendly) segment of the North Umpqua, travels on the lower slopes of Bunker Hill, above Lemolo Lake. Not as lush as other parts, this section alternates between spruce, fir and pine forests and open meadows. 

The campground at Lemolo Lake is a great place to start/end your North Umqpua adventure. 

Toketee to White Mule 

This part of the North Umpqua has perhaps the most famous section, Dread and Terror. This has more to do with the ridge south of the trail, not what's encountered along the way. Hanging gardens with water cascading down them is a better way to describe what riders see as the pedal along lush cliffs above the river. 

Be sure to stop at the Umqpua Hot Springs along this section. Leave your bike at the parking area and walk across the river to soak some of the miles off your legs. 

Calf Creek to Toketee 

Big climbs, long descents and moss covered boulders the size of Volkswagons is the best way to describe the North Umpqua from Calf Creek to Toketee. Along the way, riders will also encounter Toketee Falls, a double cascade of 40 and 80 feet. 

From Soda Springs to Toketee you'll ride the Deer Leap segment which has a big climb and descent on either end. The grind is worth the effort as the downhills are some of the best along the entire route. 

Soda Springs and Marsters trailheads also provide access to this section. 

Mott to Calf Creek 

The start and finish of this segment of the North Umpqua is like night and day. The ride begins in lush pines and ferns with moderate grades. Approaching the other end takes you into another world with some steep climbs and descents. The last bit of of this section travels through a burn area from the 2002 Apple Fire. This event has created open and exposed views, revealing the rugged skeleton of this long-distance trail. 

This section includes access from the Panther Trailhead. 

Swiftwater to Mott 

The Swiftwater to Mott section of the North Umpqua Trail features a host of different experiences. Riders will encounter mostly tight singletrack that challenges riders with steep climbs and descents through the lush ferns of the Pacific Northwest. The first few miles of the trail is fairly wide and accessible to a variety of users. Be prepared to see a lot of people at the beginning of this section. 

The trail between Wright Creek and Mott Bridge is heavily used by anglers so beware of other trail users. An alternative for this section is the Riverview Trail located on the opposite side of the river. It's a 6 mile segment that can be accessed from Mott Bridge and Bogus Creek Campground. 

This section also includes access from Wright Creek Trailhead.

Some of the information on this page has been sourced from: https://www.mtbproject.com/trail/87559/north-umpqua-imba-epic

 

 

Trail map

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Back

104.143 km / 64.711 mi

Total Distance

2,481 m / 8,140 ft

Total Ascent

3,623 m / 11,887 ft

Total Descent

1,390 m / 4,560 ft

Highest Point

Ride type:
Mountain biking
Road riding
Sightseeing
Commuter
Rail Trail
Gravel
Various
EPIC Ride
Difficulty: Advanced (Black)
Ride Duration: Multi-day
Fitness Level: Ultra Fit
Terrain:
Shared Bike Path - Paved
Shared Bike Path - Dirt
On-Road Bike Lane
On-Road
Off-Road - Fire Trail
Off-Road - Rail Trail
Off-Road - Single Track
Off-Road - Downhill
Gravel Road
Mobile Coverage: Excellent
Services:
Water
Food
First Aid
Toilets
Bike hire
Carparking
Bike servicing
Accessible by bike
Accessible by car
Accessible by public transport
Accessible by shuttle
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