Ride Overview

Embark on an Adventure in the Old Cascade Crest

Discover the rugged beauty and remote trails of the Old Cascade Crest, nestled in the Northern Sector of the Willamette National Forest, just an hour from Bend, Oregon. This iconic 42-mile backcountry lollipop ride offers an unparalleled mountain biking experience, combining breathtaking scenery with challenging terrain.

Ride Overview:

Trans-Cascadia Legacy: Immerse yourself in the legacy of the Trans-Cascadia MTB race, as we embark on a two-day adventure riding the Old Cascade Crest South on Saturday and Old Cascade Crest North on Sunday. These two days promise the best combination of riding in the area, showcasing stunning landscapes and thrilling descents.

South Crescent Trailhead: Our journey begins at the S. Crescent Trailhead with a stout climb to the top of Crescent, offering panoramic views and an incredible descent. Traverse through forests and patches of thick rhododendron, descending to a low point with a refreshing creek crossing before regrouping for lunch.

Three Pyramids Exploration: For those seeking a challenge, continue towards the 3 pyramids, navigating undulating terrain and punchy climbs. Ascend the S. Pyramid Trail, experiencing steep and technical sections amidst breathtaking scenery. Reach the high point, and prepare for the coveted descent of N Pyramid, renowned as one of the best in the Old Cascade Crest.

Historical Insights: Explore the rich history of the Old Cascade Crest, once the crest of the Old Cascades around a million years ago. Learn about the trail system’s construction by the CCC and USFS between 1930 and 1950, originally serving as a transportation network between fire towers, for animal grazing, and gold mining.

Trip Details:

Duration: All Day Adventure

Trail Difficulty: Intermediate to advanced.

Recommended for: Adventurous riders seeking a unique mountain biking experience in the Old Cascades Crest in the Willamette National Forest. Explore this remote and rugged terrain and immerse yourself in the beauty of Oregon’s backcountry.

1 Day Guided Trip


Per Person / Per Day


(per day)

Ascent: 4,553’
Decent: 6,010’
Estimated Mileage: 18 Miles

Day Trip Includes:

  • Professional Guides
  • Shuttles/Transportation
  • A Mountain Bike Adventure

Meeting Spot 

Lava Lake Snow Park
Shuttle Departure : 9:30 AM
Please arrive 15 minutes early.

Ride Description

The Old Cascade Crest is one of Oregon’s most remote and raw places to Mountain Bike, located in the Northern Sector of the Willamette National Forest.  Nestled right next to the Middle Santiam Wilderness, the OCC in total is a 42 mile backcountry lollipop just an hour from Bend Oregon.  This area was site of the 2017 Trans-Cascadia MTB race, split in half, we ride the Old Cascades Crest South on Saturday and Old Cascades Crest North on Sunday.  These two days are the best combination of riding in this area.

We begin by our day on bike from the S. Crescent Trailhead.  It’s a stout climb to the top of Crescent, but we’ll take it slow as we have two big climbs on the day.  This can take up to 1.5 hours and as little as 1hr to the top.  There is a great lookout and in front of us, and incredible descent.  We’ll snack up and then hop on our bikes. The North Crescent descent is long and playful.  Not many people ride here so the trail quality is high, lots of duff and the perfect soil.  We’ll make our way down, crossing through forest, then through patches of thick rhododendron and back through old growth forest.  We’ll eventually hit our low point with a creek crossing and a short pedal to our van and our lunch.

We can take the time we need to relax and enjoy the day, for some, this halfway point may be enough and we have the opportunity for a mid point return to the car.  For those who push on, we’ll hop on bikes from the van and continue on trail towards the 3 pyramids.  The trail to get to the beginning of our climb up S. Pyramid is fun and undulating, bouts of fun descending and some punchy climbs.  We’ll make our way to S Pyramid Trail and head up.  This is our second big climb, we have another 1-1.5 hours of bike/hike a bike.  We ascend adjacent to a glacial cirque  and up a radical old trail.  It’s steep and technical, but its beautiful and raw, and in the spring flower bloom, the place to be in Oregon.  We’ll make our way to our high point, high five, and get ready for N Pyramid.  Maybe the most coveted of the descents in the Old Cascades Crest, certainly one of best.  It’s a long decent down perfect PNW backcountry trail with some fun switchbacks, long stretches of hold er open and on trail features you can jib and jump off.  At the bottom, we’ll cross a lower creek and then a short climb back to the shuttle van and a 25 minute ride back to our cars.  End of day, and how about that ride!  Come on out and explore Oregons Backcountry at the Old Cascades Crest!

Old Cascades Crest

82° Humidity:31% Clouds:100% Wind (SSW):41mph overcast clouds
Wednesday, 05/22 85°FThursday, 05/23 53°FFriday, 05/24 69°FSaturday, 05/25 74°FSunday, 05/26 55°F