Trail to host 'showcase event' Saturday.Byline: The Register-Guard
The first event designed to "showcase" one of the longest recreational trails in Lane County will be held Saturday in the Westfir-Oakridge area.
The Eugene to Pacific Crest Trail The Pacific Crest Trail (also known as the Pacific Crest National Scenic Trail) is a long-distance mountain hiking and equestrian trail that runs from the United States border with Mexico to its border with Canada and follows the highest portion of the Sierra Nevada and Showcase Tour is being held in conjunction with the 2002 Cascade Fat Tire Festival, an annual two-day mountain biking mountain biking Sports medicine A sport in which participants use specialized bicycles to navigate rough, steep trails covered with unforgiving rocks Injury risk Concussions, fractures, death. See Extreme sport, Novelty seeking behavior. event based in Oakridge.
The event was organized to promote and create public awareness of the Eugene to Pacific Crest Trail and to give participants a chance to sample "our trail's natural beauty as they travel along the Willamette River Willamette River
River, northwestern Oregon, U.S. It flows north for 300 mi (485 km) into the Columbia River near Portland. Oregon's most populous cities are in its valley. The Fremont Bridge, a steel arch with a main span of 1,225 ft (373 m), crosses the river at Portland. and amongst the Willamette forest and wildlife," said Deb Harvey, coordinator of the non-profit EPCT EPCT Engineering, Procurement, Construction, Turnkey organization.
The four-mile "showcase tour" will start and end at the covered bridge in Westfir. Participants can start on the trail any time after 9 a.m., but they need to complete the course by 11:15 a.m. to be eligible for prizes to be given away by random drawing.
Day-of-event registration is $15 and includes a commemorative T-shirt. The tour is open to all ages and ability levels.
While Saturday's event was designed specifically with mountain bikers in mind, the EPCT is a hiking, biking and equestrian trail and all users are welcome, Harvey said. She said the group hopes to organize other biking, hiking and equestrian events along other sections of the trail in the future.
First proposed in 1979 by the Many Rivers Group of the Sierra Club Sierra Club, national organization in the United States dedicated to the preservation and expansion of the world's parks, wildlife, and wilderness areas. Founded (1892) in California by a group led by the Scottish-American conservationist John Muir, the Sierra Club , the trail was seen as a recreational link between Eugene, elevation 400 feet, and the Pacific Crest Trail, at 6,200 feet elevation. The trail opened, using temporary routing in some sections, in 1994.
The EPCT runs on the south side of the Willamette River between Eugene and Dexter Dam, and on the north side of the river from the dam to the confluence with the Pacific Crest Trail at Bobby Lake, just south of Waldo Lake Waldo Lake is a lake in the Cascade Mountains of the U.S. state of Oregon. It is the second largest lake in Oregon with more than 10 square miles (26 km²) of water and a maximum depth of 420 feet. . The Pacific Crest Trail, in turn, provides access south all the way to U.S.-Mexico border and north to the U.S.-Canada border.
About 85 percent of the 108-mile EPCT is now located on off-road public property, including segments through the county's Mount Pisgah Arboretum The Mount Pisgah Arboretum (85 ha / 209 acres) is a non-profit arboretum and botanical garden located within the Howard Buford Recreation Area (930 ha / 2,300 acre), between the Coast Fork of the Willamette River and the slopes of Mount Pisgah near Eugene-Springfield, Oregon, , Elijah Bristow State Park and the Willamette National Forest The Willamette National Forest is a National Forest located in the central portion of the Cascade Range of Oregon, US. It contains 1,675,407 acres (2,618 mi², 6,780 km²) making it one of the largest national forests. land north and east of Dexter Reservoir.
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers recently announced plans to build a 296-foot pedestrian footbridge over the Willamette River specifically for the EPCT.
The proposed Bristow Crossing bridge, to be located just downstream from Dexter Dam, would allow the trail to be re-routed away from a temporary section along the shoulders of busy Hwy. 58 at Dexter Reservoir.
For more information about the trail or volunteer opportunities, contact the EPCT via its Web site (www.eugenepct.com), or call (541) 937-1080.