Forest Park Mountain Biking
Saltzman Road - 1.6 miles
This is the easiest climb from Leif Erikson up to Springville. There is one big intersection in the middle of the park, with four trails that intersect. Starting at the river (roughly Northeast) and working clockwise, they are:
- Saltzman downhill, ends on Hwy 30 (left on image below)
- Leif Erikson, toward town (center on image below)
- Saltzman uphill, ends on Skyline (right on image below)
- Leif Erikson, toward Germantown (behind rockpile at right of image below)
Panned image of intersection - click to enlarge
The above picture is taken from Leif Erikson, heading Southwest (into town, away from Germantown). The trail on the left heads to Hwy 30, the trail in the middle is the continuation of Leif Erikson, the trail on the right is Salzman. Note how the "small" trail here is the main trail through the park (it can be deceiving)! If you're coming from Portland, you will be coming from the opposite direction - the trail in the middle of this picture - so to your right will be the downhill to Hwy 30, to your left will be Salzman, and nearly straight ahead will be the continuation of Leif Erikson.
Be careful blasting down Saltzman. There is a chance of hikers and riders, and the city crews occasionally cover this with gravel that will cause your braking to get real squirrelly. I know someone who had to get medivac'ed out because of this!
The trailhead starts about 100 meters north of Skyline on "NW Saltzman" road. There is parking for about 3 or 4 cars at the top of Saltzman, so don't count on getting a spot there on a nice weekend unless its very early or late in the day.
Firelane 3 - .9 mile
The Skyline entrance to Firelane 3 is in a neighborhood with a brick entrance, just Southeast of the Skyline Cemetary. There are (at least) three neighborhoods with brick entrances that all look the same. This one is named "Thunder Crest", and is most easily identified by the big house with the copper roof at the entrance. It is either a quick descent to Leif Erikson or a grueling climb up from Leif. It tends to stay particularly muddy in the wetter seasons, making the climb or descent rather dicey.
The bottom trailhead is easy to see going Northwest on Leif Erikson (see below), but its easy to blow past this heading toward town.
Trailhead on Leif