Rim drive around Crater Lake is one of the most spectacular rides in the state. I encourage all Oregonian cyclists to make it out there at least once and hope that people from all over the States and world give themselves the opportunity to ride the Rim.
If you hit this ride on a low traffic weekday when the sun is shining, the experience of this geological anomaly will send you reeling. Eons ago, the mountain top sank into its own body, ripping bizarre stone cliffs and flinging pumice outcrops as it plunged. The resulting crater filled with a deep blue water whose color could be the Mother of all blues that ever were. From the crater’s rim, you can overlook an ocean of rolling mountains, blue-green forests, and meadows.
It’s butt-kicking, high-altitude, 33-mile loop that, at times, made me feel like I was floating about the ether on two wheels.
Rim Drive was our singular unloaded day ride on a 5-day loop cycle tour from Ashland, OR. And, let me say, the journey of getting to Crater Lake and returning back to Ashland was almost as gorgeous as the Rim. We explored deserted back-roads cut through the heart of the Rogue River National Forest. We discovered an ultra-remote, one-lane, paved logging road that made me feel euphoric, even in a 50 degree downpour.
It was an unbelievably awesome tour. Big thanks to bike fit goddess Stephanie Edman for adventuring it with me and lending me her rain pants in dire times. Here are some more pics: