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Springwater Corridor / Eastbank Esplanade
Springwater Corridor - Eastbank Esplanade is one of my favorite Portland recreational bicycle rides. Even for a short break in the day, a loop around the Esplanade is a refreshing easy loop around the Hawthorne and Steel Bridge.
One great thing about the Esplanade / Springwater trail is that you are primarily off road on a bike path where bikes still need to share the road but mostly with other bicyclists, hikers, runners, strollers, and dogs. This trail is also great for bicycle commuting!
These rides are all connected but can be done in different segments offering a lot of variety for completely enjoyable bike rides on paved off road paths. The segments of these trails provide a lot of miles of off street bike paths and make handy shortcuts for bike commuting around Portland.
The Springwater trail 40 mile loop is a hard surface path about twelve feet wide. There are a few street connections through quieter streets, and a few busy street crossings.
The Springwater Corridor is basically connected to the Eastbank Esplanade, but technically starts just south of OMSI where the path goes under the official entrance sign for the Springwater Corridor which is the start of a 40 mile loop segment which ends out in Gresham.
Powell Butte Nature Park has an entrance right from the Springwater trail about 11 miles from the start of the Springwater trail in SE Portland. Powell Butte offers lots of fun mountain bike trails and some great vistas and can make for a very full long day of cycling.
The Eastbank Esplanade basically starts around OMSI or about the Hawthorne Bridge in SE Portland - same path essentially though if you catch it on the SW side of the river and ride it around. This is a great bike commuter stretch with easy hop-off points to NE, Rose Quarter, Hawthorne, Morrison or Burnside Bridge, or cross the Steel Bridge and make easy connections into SW or NW Portland. The city of Portland has made the esplanade beautiful with sculpture and docks that make river watching very enjoyable along here. The loop on the water from Hawthorne Bridge to the Steel Bridge is a beautiful year round ride for a short break.