State of the John Wayne Trail

Thinking about a biking or hiking outing along a section of the John Wayne Trail or a multi-day trip from one end to the other? Here are a few things to keep in mind.

  • The John Wayne Trail is one of only two cross-state rail trails in the U.S. (the other is in Missouri), and it is the longest rail trail in the country. The trail was nearly closed to the public without public input after legislation was introduced by two state senators last year. Thankfully a typo in the legislative language has kept the trail open to public hiking, biking and horseback riding for now.
  • Detours: There are eight major detours around closed sections (due to broken trestles or active railroad sections).
  • Columbia River Crossing: Getting across the river presents a problem for cyclists who don’t have support vehicles. Cyclists must ride 10 miles north to Vantage, although there is no public transportation across the bridge. The only other bridge requires a 50-mile detour to the south. Fixing the Beverly Bridge, which was damaged by a recent wildfire, would enable safe passage over the Columbia River without the detour.
  • The fate of the long-neglected eastern portion of the state-owned John Wayne Pioneer Trail is still uncertain, but with the overwhelming support of the hundreds of citizens from every corner

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