January 24, 2024

Ride Schedule -> -> -> -> ->

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2024 Bike Fun


Here's what's cookin for bike fun I'm organizing this year!  

I aim to lead a nice variety of rides but two consistent things are punctual departure times and a lack of store stops. So come on time and bring your snacks!

Southerly Ladies - This monthly chill pace ride has been a lot of fun.  We usually get small groups of 4-8 riders and explore a variety of southern routes.  We meet at the north end of the Trolley Trail at SE 17th & Ochoco and depart punctually at 10:10am.  Details for each ride will be posted and on the Shift list.  No dudes, no e-bikes, no offense.

French Toast - Monthly 45 mile road ride starting at my house with breakfast.  This is a faster paced ride with a few regroup stops and a hill option.  These are by invitation only, so drop me a line (bicyclekitty@gmail) if you'd like to be added to the invite list.  Here's the route: https://ridewithgps.com/routes/45381807

Midnite Mystery Ride - Friday, May 10th.  This long time Portland tradition is led by a different leader each month and I get a turn this May!  Prepare for adventure and staying out way past your bedtime.  Details TBA (keep your eye on the Shift calendar)

hill killerz lunch repeats - every Tuesday from 12:30pm-1pm in June, July and August, come play bikes on SE 52nd Avenue between Harney and Flavel. Earn a hill killerz sticker.

hill killerz social rides - monthly (June 25, July 23, August 20), meet at the top of SE 52nd near Flavel and enjoy 11 miles of turning it up to 11 on little bitty hills.  6:10pm punctual roll time

Swim Across Portland - Saturday, July 7th.  We'll ride to a public outdoor pool (bring $5 cash), a secret beach and a public beach.  Kids welcome but must be comfortable riding on streets with cars and able to keep a 12mph pace.  More details: https://www.shift2bikes.org/calendar/event-18420

Bicycle Kitty Alley Catty - Saturday, July 13, meet at Brentwood Park at 2 to race or ride bikes around Brentwood-Darlington, answering clues and finding mystery spots.  Ends at Assembly Brewing with an after party and some small prizes.  No digital way-finding allowed, paper maps provided.

Ladies Bike Camping - Saturday, July 20 - Sunday July 21 - let's ride bikes to go camping!  Drop me a line (bicyclekitty@gmail) if you'd like to get added to the invite list. No dudes, no e-bikes, no offense.

December 18, 2023

Southerly Ladies December Ride

Six of us set off to enjoy what has become our "classic" loop.  

We ride south on the Trolley Trail to Park Avenue, go up the hill and over to Aldercrest.  We always stop at Clackamas Park to ride the gravel pathways and visit the bathrooms, then back to Aldercrest, the tiniest section of mountain biking including the tiniest bridge, then on to Johnson City.  The little hill out of Johnson City is cute.  

We ride the 205 path over to High Rocks Bridge, then finally the Trolley Trail to the Nature Park and bridge over Kellogg Creek.  Soon we are back at the Springwater Trail and saying our goodbyes.

I'm so thankful for the friends and strangers who show up for this "chill pace" ride.  We have been riding together for a year and I'm looking forward to more fun and adventure in the new year.

Next ride is Saturday January 20th, meet at 10am, punctual roll at 10:10am.  Link to event: https://www.shift2bikes.org/calendar/event-18218

November 13, 2023

Southerly Ladies November Ride


Southerly Ladies have been riding monthly for a year now!

Our November ride was bookended by cemeteries.  We rode west over the Sellwood Bridge and up the giant Riverview cemetery hill.  A couple of us walked, one of us puked from the effort, and all of us enjoyed the beauty of it all.

We rode on the very pretty, leafy, downhill trail in Tryon Park and into Lake Oswego.  After a quick stop to peek at the lake, we headed over to to the bike path that starts with an old Iron Furnace.  

As we exited the trail, we all heard a loud POP!  One rider's sidewall gave up the fight.  Luckily, we were able to repair it and use a section of old tire I carry in my tool kit to reinforce it.

Onward through Mary S. Young Park trails, which were confusing enough that we doubled back on ourselves.  We made it through at last, had a quick regroup and figured out together how to get to the trail through Burnside Park and Maddox Woods.  

The weather continued to shine as we cut through the construction zone under the bridge to Oregon City.  Finally, we crossed the bridge and high tailed to the High Rocks Bridge and the Trolley Trail back to our final resting stop at the Milwaukie Pioneer Cemetery.

October 16, 2023

Southerly Ladies October Ride


Three riders were quickly caught by our fourth lady, on a fixed gear no less.  We headed south on the Trolley Trail and enjoyed taking a quick tour of the new style MAX trains and snacked on some treats provided by Trimet before heading over to Aldercrest.

We enjoyed our typical route, swinging by the little lake at Johnson City and riding down the 205 path to the high rocks bridge over the Clackamas River.  After a quick snack, we headed back to the 205 path and exited at Strawberry Lane to go find some Clacky cut-throughs.  

Our exploration into a defunct fish hatchery was fun but didn't go through, so we went around to the other side to see what's what. Nothing is what's what!  

Back to 82nd Drive and Tolbert and up to Mount Talbert.  Our plan was to ride the path up Mount Talbert but the signage made it pretty clear bikes are not allowed, plus just getting to the trailhead was quite a climb!

Back to the Sunrise Bike Path and 205 for a minute before heading over to the wrong side of the tracks single track.  Went by CostCo, not feeling envious of the mob of shoppers there, we made our way to the path near Mt Scott Creek.  "We're mountain bikers now!"  Onward to the network of cool weird paths near Furnberg Park, up the newly improved Linwood and back to the Springwater Trail.

Peel offs and goodbyes and see ya next month!

October 6, 2023

Palouse Cascade Trail

The Palouse To Cascade Trail has been known by many names and the name is a bone of contention amongst many trail users.  Some current on-trail signage still denotes it as the Iron Horse Trail, and after all, it sits in the middle of the Iron Horse National Park   Other signage refers to it as the John Wayne Pioneer Trail, apparently so named because John Wayne rode part of it on horseback once.  The original railway that had been here, which transported passengers and cargo like raw silk, was named the Milwaukee Road.  Whatever it is called, it is a gorgeous place to ride bikes, and we even made it work as an eight day out and back bike camping trip.  

Day 1 it seemed appropriate to start our rail to trail adventure by taking a train there, so we jumped the Amtrak in Portland to and arrived in Tukwila a few hours later.  It's a 50 mile ride (on some beautiful city & regional trails) to the trailhead near Rattlesnake Lake. We had expected to camp there but learned it’s not allowed and daylight was fading so we set up camp right on the side of the trail about a mile in. We could hear a waterfall beneath us but never saw it. 

Day 2 we awoke trailside to the sound of the occasional cyclist passing by our campsite.  This was the beginning of a phenomenon wherein we say hello and the passerby says nothing and glares at us.  That continued for the next several days.  After packing up, I noticed my rear tire was flat and I recalled hitting a steep ledge on a bridge a few miles before camp the night before.  Kids ride tubeless but I’m no kid. We rode 40 miles filled with tunnels and trestles and beautiful views. Railroad grade climbing appears flat and makes you think you’re riding sluggishly, but you’re not! The Snoqualmie Tunnel is 2.5 miles of cold dark drippiness. We grabbed burgers in Easton and enjoyed the hiker-biker site at the Lake Easton campground. Glad to have earplugs to drown out the drone of I-90.

Day 3 was a bluebird day that took us 50 miles from the hiker/biker sites at Lake Easton, past many gates, old depots and informative placards. My train brain started to grow! We dipped into the I-90 hellscape to grab snacks from a loud and stinky truck stop. Later on we got lost in Ellensburg for a while before heading south on the delightfully beautiful (and paved!) Canyon River Road to find our best camp spot of the trip: Big Horn alongside the Yakima River. It was so breezy I had to put rocks in my tent!

Day 4’s 60 mile ride started off with breakfast at Big Horn camp by the Yakima River, then a short ride to Ellensburg to see if the bike shop was open. The one pair of bike shorts I brought were failing miserably (my panties were in a twist!). No luck at the shop so we lubed our chains and hopped on the trail to Boylston. The loose deep sand section was listed as 4.5 miles long but it was more like 25 miles. Rock formations with cut-outs for the trail started to appear, and these were often full of fist sized rocks. We had a tailwind and it was downhill yet it was still one of hardest days I’ve had on two wheels. I cried a bit. 

Reaching the spectacular Beverly Bridge felt victorious, after all this was our destination and the impetus behind the entire trip.  On the other side, we met lots of friendly dogs before getting on the highway.  We noticed a sign reading “secure your load - it’s the law”, alongside an onion orchard and a shoulder littered with loose onions. Soon a truck passed filled with unsecured onions. We ate Mexican food (all of the restaurants in Mattawa are Mexican), then rode to our reserved airbnb, named “A-frame hot tub”, which is not a great name for your rental if the hot tub isn’t available. I cried again. We found an ice cream truck and enjoyed sleeping in beds.

Day 5 started at 6am with a team decision to hire a van (Rodeo Town Taxi) to take us to Ellensburg (from Mattawa). The prospect of riding that brutal sandy rocky trail again, uphill and into a headwind, was highly dreaded. We weren’t sure if the paved Huntzinger and Vantage Highway would be safe on bicycles. Streetview showed the Highway had no shoulder and it appeared well-maintained, which we took to mean well-used. We learned later that it’s a great biking route and it’s kept up because of the wind farm maintenance trucks that occasionally use it. 

Ah well, for the low cost of $50 each, we enjoyed playing tetris with our bikes and gear and had a lovely rest day in Ellensburg. After a delicious second breakfast at the Country Cafe, we visited the fascinating Kittatas Museum and the friendly folks at the Recycle Bicycle shop repaired my broken brake noodle and sold me a pair of shiny new bike shorts. I even got to do a short lube clinic for the mechanics! (I work for Dumonde Tech). After beers at the pub and an 8 mile ride to the KOA, I hung out and did laundry while my friends explored some local trails.

Day 6 had been planned as an low mileage recovery day, as we had anticipated a hard day 5. We rode a nice easy 25 miles from Ellensburg to Cle Ellum. I love an “out and back” ride. It’s fun seeing the same terrain twice, and how different it is in the other direction. I hadn’t noticed a carved wooden troll just off the trail the first time we rode by it. We stayed at the amazing Iron Horse Bed & Breakfast (with hot tub!). Our host went above and beyond to share his extensive knowledge of the Old Milwaukee Road rail history. The caboose was quaint and comfy and we could hear a train in the distance as we drifted off.

Day 7’s 55 mile day began with the most delicious scones I’ve ever had and a farm-to-table breakfast at the Iron Horse b&b. It felt like a lifetime ago since we’d ridden this section between Cle Ellum and Rattlesnake Lake. It was summer and we were young. The leaves had started changing and the temps were cooler outside of the Snoqualmie tunnel as well as in. We met lots of riders near the tunnel, including a gentleman who didn’t ride through the tunnel but OVER it - from mouth to mouth! Later on the trail, a sheriff in a pickup truck asked if we’d seen a blonde lady. We saw him several times and wondered what happened to the poor blonde lady. We raced daylight to find a camp spot after the leaving the trailhead, but there aren’t any campgrounds in that area so we got a “warm showers” host to put us up in their backyard. I was stressed out and not stoked to camp on turf until the hosts invited me to jump on their trampoline with their kids and fed us brownies with ice cream.  

Day 8 was our final day and took us 45 miles from North Bend to the Amtrak station in Tukwila. That morning, we learned that the diner made famous by Twin Peaks was nearby so went to check if their coffee really was damn fine. When I took a selfie inside, I swear there was no one behind me. We pondered on the blonde lady the sheriff had asked us about the day before. We found a shortcut so we wouldn’t have to scramble down the ditch to the Tokul tunnel but it did lead us to a closed bridge for our scrambling pleasure. The Snoqualmie Trail felt even funner now that it was familiar. Our first rain of the trip started in the early afternoon, pretty ideal timing overall. We continued to undo our day one and made it with an hour to spare. It felt like tying a bow on the whole trip to take a train to the lovely Union Station in Portland and hop the light rail home.  

Here's a summary of our trip:

Day 1: Tukwila to Rattlesnake Lake: 50 miles

Day 2: Rattlesnake Lake to Lake Easton campground: 40 miles (includes Snoqualmie Tunnel)

Day 3: Lake Easton campground to Camp Big Horn: 50 miles

Day 4: Big Horn camp to Mattaway airbnb: 60 miles (includes Beverly Bridge)

Day 5: Mattaway to Ellensburg KOA: 52 miles (IN A VAN!) we rode just 8 miles

Day 6: Ellensburg KOA to Iron Horse B & B in Cle Elum: 25 miles

Day 7: Cle Elum to North Bend: 57 miles

Day 8: North Bend to Tukwila: 40 miles

And here's what I'll plan to do next time:

Day 1: Tukwila to North Bend hip camp: 42 miles

Day 2: North Bend to Lake Easton campground: 46 miles (includes Snoqualmie Tunnel)

Day 3: Lake Easton campground to Camp Big Horn: 50 miles

Day 4: Big Horn camp to Beverly Bridge to Wanapum camp: 52 miles

Day 5: Wanapum to Ellensburg KOA (by way of Huntzinger and Vantage Hwy): 35 miles

Day 6: Ellensburg KOA to Iron Horse B & B in Cle Elum: 25 miles

Day 7: Cle Elum to North Bend hip camp: 57 miles

Day 8: North Bend to Tukwila: 40 miles


The trail was easy to navigate and the surface was easy to ride until east of Boylston  

The plentiful placards made for fun mini rest stops to learn the history of the rail and trail 

There are lots of vault toilets on the trail and a couple spigots (at Hyak and Easton)

Doing several weekend bike camping trips over the summer helped me dial in my gear

Sleeping in beds two of the 7 nights was a luxury.  Laundry at the KOA was essential. 

To make loading and unloading my bags from my bike quick and easy at the train station, I carried a collapsible shopping bag so I could put my trunk bag & water bottle inside.

I cannot say enough about the pros of the "out and back" route.  Seeing everything twice is cool because it looks both familiar and new.  It also creates a safety net feeling in case you need to turn back early.


I am extremely uncomfortable riding in unfamiliar terrain in the dark but both the first and last night really pushed that boundary because campgrounds are so scarce in that area.  Next time, I'll have accommodations reserved for every night.

My friends (who are much faster paced than me) enjoy stopping at many stores and restaurants. I prefer to take lots of short breaks on the trail (especially since I had toted much of the food I needed).  Next time instead of waiting, I'll tell folks "see ya on the trail!"

It felt like a failure to take a van back from Mattawa to Ellensburg, but it also felt like our only safe choice and I'm grateful it was available.  Next time, we'll ride back on the paved route.

I pledge to always bring two pairs of bike shorts on trips longer than one night!  I would've given anything for a backup pair of shorts when my only pair failed so miserably.

If you are counting on a hot tub at one of your reserved accommodations, double, triple and quadruple check it will be available for you to avoid a big disappointment after a hard day of riding.



I rode a 26" aluminum mountain bike with 2.25" wide knobby tires.  As always, I carry my gear in a rear trunk bag and rear panniers, along with a front kids' basket to carry my everyday tool kit, which includes a C02 inflator and two C02 cartridges, a multi-tool, tire levers, tweezers, a chain breaker and spare link, spoke tool, spare bolts, schraeder adapter, patch kit and tire boot.  I also had a frame-mounted pump and 3 spare tubes.

In addition to the expected tent, thermarest and sleeping bag, I carried a small fleece blanket which made for a nice lap blanket in the mornings and evenings. 

I brought enough snacks (nuts, dried fruit, chocolate, clif bars) for half the trip and enough oatmeal and ramen for every camp meal.  I carried two 32oz water bottles on the bike and a 2 liter water bladder, along with MSR tabs for sterilization (which I used only once at Camp Big Horn). I carried the tiniest cook stove there is, which is great for getting water hot.  I packed instant coffee and a tube of sweetened condensed milk, along with a variety of teas for each evening.

For fashion statements, I carried a compressive dry bag to squish my clothes, which included: leggings, long sleeve wool shirt, short sleeve wool shirt, jeans, mini-skirt, 3 pairs panties, 1 spare bra, 1 spare pair riding socks, 2 pair camp socks, fleece cap, neck muff and mittens.  I also packed both a puffy jacket and a rain coat and was glad to have both. I wore shorts and a jersey and a bolero (connected armwarmers).

For luxury, I brought my Bumease sitting pillow for trail rest stops, along with a small polyfill head pillow for sleeping.  I don't like sleeping on bunched up clothes.  I brought small tins with tiny candles for camp ambiance.  The big luxury winner were my "mega warmers" which are like little hotties on steroids.  I brought one for every camp night and they made my sleeping bag warmer and also soothed whatever body part felt sore.

For self-care, I was glad to have my earplugs and eye mask along.  I had my homemade first-aid kit and was glad to have the neosporin available when my chammy butt'r stash ran out. My kit also contains bandaids, bandages, butterfly bandages, eyedrops, hydrocortisone, tweezers and ace bandage. My tiny toiletry kit includes micro reusable paint pots (from the art store) so I could have the assortment of lotions and potions I need to feel good and look beautiful.  My face cream hack is to combine SPF cream, primer, tinted moisturizer and highlighter cream in one pot.  Who needs a five minute face when you can do a five second face!

I will definitely be going back next year and am planning on putting together a group of 4 riders.  Would you like to join me?

September 9, 2023

Southerly Ladies September Ride

Five of us met at the Trolley Trail trailhead - one lady stopping by to tell us she keeps wanting to join us and it keeps not working out.  She was doing a tour of catios (cat patios!) instead.

The remaining four us headed south on the Trolley Trail, turning off at Park Avenue to ride the lovely Aldercrest.  We took a quick tour of Clackamas Park's grass and gravel byways and bridges, enjoyed a rest stop and continued on Aldercrest to the rocky single track at its end.

We visited No Trespassing Lake (actually Lake Leona at Johnson City), then onward to the "good part" of the 205 bike path and on to High Rocks bridge.  After a snack and a chat, we turned back northward.

One lady opted to head back on the Trolley Trail, while the remaining three of us agreed to go get weird!  We explored a dead end Fish Hatchery road and some industrial roads before reaching the Sunrise Trail. From there, things got bizarre as we tried our luck on some single track cutties, crossing Mount Scott Creek and riding along the wrong side of the tracks.

The huge unnamed swatch of land north of Furnberg features a labyrinth of hard-packed dirt single track, some gravel and some densely wooded dark haunted sections.  I could play there all day!

Finally we lost another rider due to time constraints and the two of us remaining headed to the secret lake, took a look, and booked it back to Linwood, the Springwater Trail and a bonus climb up 55th Avenue.

I forgot to take a photo of the group, so am instead showing a photo of the spoke card each rider gets for joining this chill pace ladies ride.

August 17, 2023

Southerly Ladies August Ride


Four rad ladies showed up for our longest, hardest, hilliest and hottest ride so far in our series - 45 miles with plenty of hills.

We bee-lined on the Trolley Trail to the bridge over the Clackamas River at the crowded High Rocks swim spot, then onward and upward south of Oregon City.  After a nice taste of the gorgeous country road called Central Point, we headed east toward Beaver Creek.

A long stop at the market for lunch refreshed us for the remainder of our adventure.  On to Henrici and a gorgeous descent to the Mompano Reservoir (pictured), then more country roads to the busy ugly Redland Road.  One mile on Redland Road feels like ten, but we managed and took our turn at Potter.  

Lots of views of WyEast were on display for us.  We took the grody Brady hill up to the wholesome Holcomb back to Oregon City.  It was fun to try a new road out.

Soon we were back on the Trolley Trail and all of us agreed we needed to jump into the Willamette River at Milwaukie Bay Park before continuing to our Final Resting Spot and goodbyes.

July 11, 2023

Southerly Ladies July Ride


Five of us headed east to Boring on Saturday.  The weather was ideal, cloudy and 70s, and our group was ideal too!

We talked about bike camping aspirations, how fun Pedalpalooza has been and riding in gravel.  Then we enjoyed riding on the lovely gravel path called the Cazadera.  At the dead end (one day there will be a bridge!), we met a couple of retired ladies who'd ridden out with their dog in a trailer.  They are exploring rail to trails all over the US on bicycles and had many stories to share.

Next month will be a sort of "graduation ride" - our longest and hardest to date!  Consider joining us, and remember, we always stay together as a chill pace gang of gal pals.

June 19, 2023

Southerly Ladies June Ride

A small but mighty crew showed up for the June edition of the Southerly Ladies ride.  We enjoyed cheering for runners on the Trolley Trail who were participating in the "Grateful Dad" run.  

On to Aldercrest and Clackamas Park to mingle with the softball tournament players and their families.  From there we went back to Aldercrest and on to No Trespassing Lake, the 205 path and High Rocks Bridge over the Clackamas.  

Now for the mega hill!  Up, then up, a little more up and finally up at the top we took a break at a crowded kids splash fountain, refilled and refueled and got ready for our dessert coast down the mega hill.  

We took a photo opp stop at the "Gun Shop" mural and said our goodbyes at our final resting place.  Very fun ride!

Join us on July 8th as we head east on a "Boring Not Boring" 30 mile flat ride with 5 miles on a very user-friendly gravel path through the woods.

May 15, 2023

Southerly Ladies May Ride

Four of us Southerly Ladies broke from tradition and headed east to Boring.  We enjoyed a nice headwind for the 15 mile bike path trip, stopped at the trailhead to exchange fluids and forged ahead to ride the nice gravel Cazadero Trail.

A quick snack stop at the dead-end and a photo opp to show my riders how much I love them.  The heat started to kick up and the wind changed direction so we had another chance to practice riding into a headwind.

April 10, 2023

Southerly Ladies April Ride

Another great ride!  Four of us enjoyed beautifully sunny and dry weather.  While at the meeting spot, we saw a rather large group ride go by (Portland Cycling Club).  Then, later, while at the regoup at Park Avenue, the Sorellas stopped to chat with us.  It's great seeing so many riders out!

Onward to Aldercrest, some mixed terrain fun at the park, a little single track cut-through, then to "the lake" for a quick regroup. Another quick stop at the Crossing Park bridge, then back to the Trolley Trail and our "final resting spot" stop for a photo opp.  

March 13, 2023

Southerly Ladies March Ride


Six of us enjoyed a gorgeous sunny Spring day together.  

We rode on the Trolley Trail for a couple of miles, then peeled over to Aldercrest.  At Clackamas Park, we experimented riding on bumpy grass and gravel paths before taking our rest break.  Everyone got a spoke card and help installing it.  

Everyone shared their cycling goals and dreams.  A couple of riders are planning to ride Seattle to Portland, and some are planning to try their first bike camping trip this year.

Once we reached the Crossing Park bridge over the Clackamas River, we decided together that we should go see what's at the top of the giant hill in Oregon City.  It took us around twenty minutes to the top, (one rider even got a bloody nose!) and only about 2 minutes to get back down.

Finally, at our final resting place at my favorite cemetery, we said our goodbyes.