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advice on moving to Oregon....best places to live and ride??

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We are considering relocating to Oregon, possibly somewhere along the coast. I've grown tired of 8 month long winters. We are going to Oregon on vacation this spring. We'll be flying into Portland, then renting a car and kind of going on a driving tour.

My question is, what areas or towns would you guys who are familiar with the state recommend checking out? I'm not looking for Chamber of Commerce answers but rather answers from a riders standpoint. The best (hassle free) riding areas etc. you know?

I do have a dirt bike (KX250) but my usual riding preference is dual sport. I have a factory street legal '02 DRZ400 with all the mods and two 4X4 ATV's. The ATV's are also street legal and plated for Wyo. but I've been told ATV's cannot be legally ridden on road in Oregon. ???

Thanks in advance for your suggestions!!

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McMinnville is the only place you need to consider. Mt Hood, the coast, TSF, Upper Nestucca, Trask, Santiam Pass, and local tracks are all within easy striking distance. The big cities are close enough for those times you want the city lights, but far away enough you don't have to deal with the drawbacks that come with high density. :)

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Central Oregon is ideal if you like sub zero temps in the winter and nothing but riding in dust in the summer.

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the coast is beautiful, but it rains all winter long (Oct-may) lots of hunting-fishing! good small towns southern coast is alot drier-warmer than the north, the valley is close to the same weather as the coast but a little drier, but the valley is the cancer hole of oregon! and getting worse every day!! central Oregon is nice,lots of riding,hunting,fishing,skiing,ect growing FAST, but cold in the winter and hot and dry in the summer, eastern Oregon is like where you live, good luck. :):)

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Bend is great. Lots of lakes, camping, trails to ride & Mt's to ski. It's growing fast and there's lots to do. If you go, check out some of the micro breweries downtown.

Hood River would be my second choice. Foot of Mt Hood & still not far for riding.

McMinville to Sherwood are nice too. Close to the city, but still far enough away it's easy to get out of town and hit the trail. It does rain 8 months a year here though.

Reedsport & the south coast is pretty nice too. Great weather and no traffic.

Ooh, and Add Medford / Jacksonville too. More great riding down there, rains less then Portland & about the right sized town.

Anyhow ... Good luck on your tour.

- Ryan

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Bend area is great sometimes. Hot, hot in summer, cold in winter, but snow. In the valley, everything is moderate. It snows down here about once a year. We may see 100 degree temps for maybe for seven days a year. Not at least a month's worth in Bend area. I have not missed a weekend of riding in several years. I may have had to ride thru two feet of snow once or twice, but I haven't miss a weekend! Rain or shine , mud or dust I go. Mostly in the coast range ( McMinnville area ) or lots of other places no farther than 3 hours driving. I've ridden in all the lower 48, and there is no place like this place! Lot's of Dualsporting events too. Oregon is number#1 on my short list. There is NO other state that offers as much! Bar none. Well I'll get off my Soap Box now. Pm me when your coming , I'll try to point you in the direction you want.

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McMinville is ideal if you like 8mths of rain!

Anyway, check the annual rainfall totals. 39" in our area compares favorably to many other PNW locales...but then again, it is getting a little crowded...yeah, after I thought about it, I agree with russhenry...move to Bend (and take your dust mask). :)

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Like unkle george mentioned on the bottom of his list, Medford, Jacksonville. Sorry about the chamber of commerce report but the weather here is mild. We have 4 distinct seasons. Snow on the valley floor happens every three to five years, maybe 2 1/2 to 3 inches. Summers, maybe 15 days over 100 degrees. Not too extreme either way.

As far as riding goes The Motorcycle Riders Association owns 261 acres of land and is trying to purchase 1300 more. All of this in a designated OHV recreation area. Some trails are nice, some can use maintainance.

There is also the Prospect OHV system which has over 200 miles of trails, some of which has been used and will be used again for dualsport events. It is some 50 miles from Medford. This area borders Crater Lake National Park.

We have dust in the summer and mud in the winter but thats what makes it great.

Jim

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Reading all these threads everyone has an opinion on "what is best". The bottom line is you are not more than a couple hours from a different climate and conditions no matter where you live. If you relocate to the Portland area you are within a couple hours of the coast or a couple hours from the high desert east of the mountains. So, from a riding standpoint you have it all no matter where you live!

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I'm gonna have to throw my vote in for Bend. The riding here is great! There are multiple riding areas and open spaces that are less than 1/2 hour away in ANY direction. The scenery is diverse and beautiful. The weather is great, don't let anyone tell you different. Yes, it can get cold, but mostly at night. Snow is a joke and rain is rare. This winter we've seen just a couple inches of snow spread between X-Mas and Jan 15th. It's been over 50 here for the past month and topped out at 67 earlier this month. It's rare not to have a clear day anytime of the year. If you live anywhere in Oregon you'll be happy. Just stay out of the Portland Metro.

Driving times from Bend:

Portland - 2.5-3.5 hours (depending on which part of the city)

Eugene - 2 hours

Salem - 2 hours

Klamath Falls - 2 hours

Hood River - 1.5 - 2 hours

Most Coastal locations - 4.5 hours avg.

Any of the 6+ riding areas in Central Oregon - 30 mins or less!

Signing off from the sunbelt of Oregon,

Dan

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Wow, thanks for all the tips!! Exactly what I was hoping for!!

I know everyone has their own idea of what is "best" but now I have an idea of at least where to even start looking. I've been eyeballin' that Reedsport and Coos Bay area as I do have a friend who lives in Coos Bay. That Oregon Dunes OHV area sounds kinda cool. Has anyone ridden that area specifically? I'm going to do a lot of online researching before heading that way this spring. Well, spring time in Wyoming anyway...late June, early July.

So, keep 'em coming and thanks again!!

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Wow, thanks for all the tips!! Exactly what I was hoping for!!

I know everyone has their own idea of what is "best" but now I have an idea of at least where to even start looking. I've been eyeballin' that Reedsport and Coos Bay area as I do have a friend who lives in Coos Bay. That Oregon Dunes OHV area sounds kinda cool. Has anyone ridden that area specifically? I'm going to do a lot of online researching before heading that way this spring. Well, spring time in Wyoming anyway...late June, early July.

So, keep 'em coming and thanks again!!

I have lived in the Reedsport area for almost 5 years now and absolutely love it. My little chunk of paradise.

Now if all you have ever done is drive through the town you would think that I am nuts!!! But if you have ever taken the time to get off of the beaten path you would find a great community. The dunes are basically in your back yard and a place to ride on the beach legally is only about a 10 minute drive away. I only ride the dunes in the winter when they are hard packed and there is nobody out there.

Blueridge and Winchester trail systems are only about 50 - 60 minutes away... so there is lots of single track to ride.

Close proximity to Eugene: 1hr 20min. Commuter flights out of North Bend: 25min.

Look me up when you get here and I will be happy to show you around. :)

Ace

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