Blue River Loop

For a long time now, the 1509 road along the S Santiam/Blue River (McKenzie) divide has been one of The Logging Road Cyclist’s favorites. He has done a number of rides described here that incorporate parts of this remarkable road. An obvious route that he has delayed doing until now traverses the 1509 from beginning to end and returns on the 15, the main drag along Blue River.

This is one of the best rides in the TLRC ouvre: easy enough to actually do, yet hard enough to ennoble the rider, passing by pleasant forest and spectacular views to distant peaks and down wild drainages, not to mention passing just beneath the impressive crags of  Wolf Rock.

View down Tibits Cr. early in the ride. 1509 can be seen clinging to the opposite canyon wall.

To start this ride go past Blue River on Hwy 126 to Blue River Reservoir Rd, the start of FS 15. Proceed up past the reservoir and Mona campground to the 1509 junction, where Tidbits Cr. enters Blue R. Gear up and climb for a good long time.

Sisters from 1509 road.

Looking down one of the Southside drainages at Cougar Reservoir.


Mt Washington.

Edge of Twin Buttes, near junction with 2044.

When you hit the 2044 road, you have done the serious climbing. Note this junction for possible further use as it heads down to House Rock on the S Santiam and Gordon Lakes. As the 1509 now rolls along the divide, longer views are had.

Iron Mt, Browder Ridge, Mt Jefferson between.

The tippy-top, elevation-wise, is is just past Latiwi peak. Glide down to the 15 junction and then float dreamily down to the pretty Blue River past impressive Wolf Rock. You’ll be happy you did this one.

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