So many times I am asked what can I do on an econversion that I couldn’t do on my bike as it is. Well there are many, but one of my favorites is just exploring and going places that you couldn’t or otherwise wouldn’t. Obstacles fall by the wayside and the trail, road and unknown open up to you with every mile. Let me tell you about my latest local excursion:
I live in the Pacific Northwest in Portland and enjoy riding here as much as I can, however I often don’t have the time to load up the bike and drive to some of the awesome spots out there in the Cascades. So I just ride out my driveway and see what I can find that I haven’t already. Yesterday was a good day for that.
First, let me tell you a little about my bike. It’s a Norco Sight that has been custom built by my my shop, Portland Electric Cycle, to a torque sensored mid-drive motor which we sell running at 52 volts. It is a powerhouse and can climb any hill and still runs at 28+mph down the road, weighing in at 49lbs unloaded as well. It’s my superbike.
That’s up on Mt. St. Helens, and not easy to get up on that trail. That bike can do it though.
But that’s not what I did yesterday evening. I just rode out on to the railroad tracks to St. Johns neighborhood in Portland.
This is the Union Pacific headquarters for the Pac. NW. It’s just across from downtown adjacent to the Mississippi neighborhood. I started up the tracks here. It's not exactly single tracking, but it's 5 minutes from my house and makes for a good beginning to this adventure.
Riding up through UPS headquarters and Daimler truck HQ got me up to the wilder part of the ride. I ended up at an ad hoc motocross track and cove for vagabond sailors.
Eventually I came across these guys flying their amazing custom built racing drones. The noise was incredible and they were flying right at and through the trees at speeds you would have to see to believe. They purposefully fly there because the drones are just too scary for regular parks.
Now there is just no way I would ride in here without the pXcycle motor system on my Norco. The tracks are just too rough with large trap rock scattered around and the climb back out is a bit steep. No problem for this bike, though.
I could ride up a mountain, and I have quite a few times actually. I might go ahead and do that this weekend, but that is a story for next week.
So as I ride up the through the woods and joined the tracks again and ended up in Cathedral park under the St. Johns bridge. A real awesome spot to reach by the tracks.
I continued up the tracks into the forbidden part of the railway, but I just had to check it out. Eventually I came upon an active train with a railroad worker heading up the rear of the very long train. He seemed to ignore my presence. I looked for a way off the tracks, so as not to have to ride next to a moving train.
This brought me up into the container yard which as like a ghost town.
Up the tracks a way and more cars lit by the fading sun and coming moonlight with a touch of high intensity arc light
This brought me all the way back to the bike trail up through the ill-fated former Vanport complex. This neighborhood of 10,000+ built during the second world war was totally flooded and had to be abandoned after the dikes broke under the tracks. It is one the worst flash floods in American history .
It’s a golf course and the Portland International Raceway now.
Well that brought me back to the street I live on and a 3 mile ride home. I just cranked it up to turbo level and blasted home at 28mph. So, this whole ride took about 2 hours and covered from the Overlook neighborhood all the way to the end of the peninsula in St. Johns. Now you might not like riding the rails , it’s and acquired taste, but with this system you can ride wherever you want without busting a lung. Give one a try some time! More to come soon. See ya,