Hit the Road: Mountain Biking and Camping in Oregon
evoCollective athlete Matthew Slaven, hailing from Portland, knows how to create the perfect Oregon mountain bike getaway. With his background as a professional mountain biker riding for Devinci, Smith, Dakine, and Bell, he has done his fair share of exploring Oregon’s trail systems. One of the best ways to access some of these trails is to set up camp in mountains, creating a home away from home that allows him to spend all day riding with minimal commute.
Where’s your favorite place to bike and camp in Oregon?
I love to camp up on the flanks of Mount Hood right as the high country trails are starting to melt out.
What’s the riding like there?
There are a mix of trail types in the area. Some are well maintained and see heavy use, while others are a bit more backcountry and primitive. There are a few trails you can shuttle easily but the most fun is to put together a big day that starts from camp and then you get picked up 5 hours later at the bottom of a sweet decent! I typically have to drive to ride my mtb, so riding from camp is a must!
How would you describe the camping?
We call our camp site the “Secret Spot” for a reason. It’s primitive and off the beaten path with a great view of Mount Hood. If you know where the “Secret Spot” is then you are probably friends of mine and you are welcome to join us! If not there are plenty of campgrounds and pullouts near the Kneeble Springs/ Eightmile Creek area.
Is there anything specific that you bring with you?
I’m usually there for a week or long weekend, so I bring a lot of stuff. I like to bring two bikes and spare tires for sure. A week of shredding can take a toll on your bike, so you need to be prepared to keep them running….otherwise you will be the shuttle driver…Ha!
What brings you back to this spot all the time?
This spot is so special because it feels like it’s ours. We go every year for Memorial Day weekend and we escape the crowds. All our friends come out with their kids, dogs, music, etc and we just relax , shred, party…repeat! There are too many stories to tell here but hit me up sometime over a beer or maybe two….
Is there anything else to see nearby?
It’s really just all about the trails and taking in the views of Mt Hood, Mt St Helens, and Adams.
Favorite camp meal?
I love to cook with the camp fire while I’m out there. Bacon and eggs cooked in a cast iron skillet with coffee is a great start to the day. Late night Bratwurst sessions around the fire are always a good way to end the day as well.