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  1. #1
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    Willamette Valley - Buena Vista Ferry

    I rode a 50 mile loop around Oregon's middle Willamette Valley today, including a crossing of the Willamette River on the Buena Vista Ferry. I started by leaving Albany and heading north on Spring Hill Road, and then catching Buena Vista Road to the ferry. Pics:

    1. The state of Oregon has designated this area as part of an official Willamette Valley bicycle route. Buena Vista Road is a nice ramble, but Spring Hill Road from here to Albany has moderate 55mph traffic and no shoulder. It can be scary.

    2-3. Buena Vista Road has very little traffic and a nice mix of scenery as it passes through woodlands and farmland.

    4. I make a self portrait attempt.

    5. Buena Vista Road offers views of the Coast Range along the western edge of the Willamette Valley. Camp Adair (which I have photographed previously) is in the lowlands near the back of this photo.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Willamette Valley - Buena Vista Ferry-bv0607_01.jpg   Willamette Valley - Buena Vista Ferry-bv0607_02.jpg   Willamette Valley - Buena Vista Ferry-bv0607_03.jpg   Willamette Valley - Buena Vista Ferry-bv0607_04.jpg   Willamette Valley - Buena Vista Ferry-bv0607_05.jpg  


  2. #2
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    The Buena Vista Ferry operates Spring through Fall and offers bicyclists free crossing over the Willamette River.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Willamette Valley - Buena Vista Ferry-bv0607_06.jpg   Willamette Valley - Buena Vista Ferry-bv0607_07.jpg   Willamette Valley - Buena Vista Ferry-bv0607_08.jpg  

  3. #3
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    1. On the east side of the river, Talbot Road passes through the small farming community of Talbot and past grass seed fields.

    2. Talbot Road crosses I-5, the west coast's main north-south artery.

    3. In Jefferson I stopped for a picnic lunch.

    4. East of Jefferson, boaters enjoy a float on the North Santiam River.

    5. My route passed many abandoned farms like this one.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Willamette Valley - Buena Vista Ferry-bv0607_09.jpg   Willamette Valley - Buena Vista Ferry-bv0607_10.jpg   Willamette Valley - Buena Vista Ferry-bv0607_11.jpg   Willamette Valley - Buena Vista Ferry-bv0607_12.jpg   Willamette Valley - Buena Vista Ferry-bv0607_13.jpg  


  4. #4
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    1. Thankfully not all of the farms I passed were abandoned.

    2. Cosmopolitan Crabtree consists of a post office, a fire department, some empty buildings, and a tavern. The Cascade Mountains loom in the background, marking the eastern edge of the Willamette Valley.

    3. Heading back west towards Albany I crossed the South Santiam River, source of my town's drinking water. It flows clear, thankfully!

    4. My last stop was the Cottonwoods store for a snack. This store located on US-20 between Albany and Lebanon sits near the location of the former Cottonwoods Ballroom, a popular concert and dance hall from the 1930s to the 1960s. During World War 2 it entertained soldiers from Camp Adair, and over the years became a draw for such national acts as Nat King Cole and Duke Ellington. All that remains of the Cottonwoods Ballroom today is a decrepit, rusting sign at a bend in the highway.

    The end.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Willamette Valley - Buena Vista Ferry-bv0607_15.jpg   Willamette Valley - Buena Vista Ferry-bv0607_16.jpg   Willamette Valley - Buena Vista Ferry-bv0607_17.jpg   Willamette Valley - Buena Vista Ferry-bv0607_18.jpg  

  5. #5
    MB1
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    A free ferry ride and tubing in the river plus all them empty roads.

    We gotta get up there this year.
    Quote Originally Posted by the_dude
    these are better than i was expecting, and my expectations were already rather high.

  6. #6
    Mess O'Potamist
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    nicely done. that ferry is pretty sweet.

  7. #7
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    Thanks! There are a lot of nice loops in the area that can incorporate the Buena Vista Ferry. It happened that I had the ferry to myself on my crossing, but I saw many other cyclists in the area. I imagine that a lot of Salem-area riders loop down through Buena Vista. Another Willamette River ferry is the Wheatland Ferry just north of Salem.

  8. #8
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    Looks like a nice loop.

    I've never incorporated a ferry into a ride before.

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