Pedal Journal : Larch Mountain (Multnomah County, Oregon)

The other day I set out to climb Larch Mountain as part of the Rapha Rising Challenge. Larch Mountain is an extinct volcano about 20 miles away from Portland with an elevation of 4,061 ft. Direction from Portland are pretty simple. Take Stark to the Historical Columbia River Highway and keep right onto Larch Mountain Road. Easy right? sdsf

Just around the corner from the Portland Women's Forum you have the option to keep left and stay on the Historical Highway or go right and head up Larch Mountain.

It's a little over 14 miles from the Portland Women's Forum to the top of Larch Mountain. Nearly all of those 14 + miles are spent going up.

The ascent is epic.

This short stretch is probably the only flat section of the climb though it probably is a 1or 2 % gradient.

After 14 + miles of climbing it was definitely nice to see this sign.

Once at the top you have the option to head back down or take a quick five minute hike up to the view point. Make sure to pay the fee because every little bit helps. Once at the top theres a couple benches and epic views of Mount Hood, Mount Adams, Mount Jefferson, Mount Rainier near Seattle and Mount St. Helens.

Notes from the field :

- Even on a warm day the descent from Larch can be really cold! On this particular day it was in the 60's and I was freezing on my way down with a wind vest and arm warmers. - Two energy bars was plenty for me on the five hour ride. There is a couple places to grab some snacks on the Historical Columbia River Highway so food shouldn't be a problem unless your doing the ride really really early in the morning. - You can fill up your bottles at the Portland Women's Forum. I am unaware of any water source on Larch Mountain so don't take the risk and make sure to fill up. - Be careful on the decent. The roads are littered with potholes and wet spots. Its easy to misjudge your speed. I toped off at 55 mph without even trying.

My Strava route is below also for more great routes near and around Portland make sure to check out Rubber to the Road.

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