Essential Portland City Tour Video

The city we see on the Portland City Tour
Portland as seen from Marquam Hill

Here at Cycle Portland, the Essential Portland City Tour is our most popular tourist activity, especially during the summer months. With stops for photos and information along the waterfront, PSU’s campus and in the Pearl District, this tour helps orient riders in our beautiful city. You’ll walk away with a better idea of Portland’s layout, as well as an overview of the city’s history. From a sailors’ respite in the 1800’s to one of the most popular arts destinations on the West Coast, Portland’s history is written in its streets. Come explore and learn with our knowledgeable tour guides. Rain or shine, you’re in for a good time!

If you’re curious about the sights this tour has to offer, check out this footage from a tour this fall:

Tips and Tricks for Biking in the Snow in PDX!

A cyclist is riding down a snow covered road
Riding in the snow, slow and easy.

Biking in the snow can be a blast or a bit of a trial depending on road conditions, preparation, and confidence. Regardless of your experience level, here are a few tips & tricks to getting through your afternoon commute in the snow.

  1. Take It Slow– Even if you’re feeling confident about your own ability to stay vertical, don’t forget that there will be drivers & riders on the road that might be a bit less reliable than usual, so a slow, defensive ride is going to be safest. There’s no worse feeling than not being able to stop when you want to, so brake early, and tap your breaks frequently to eliminate any buildup of snow or ice on your rims.
  2. Lower Your Tire Pressure– By letting out a little air, you create more surface area in contact with the ground, which can help you maintain good grip with the ground.
  3. Follow Tracks– If there have been other riders through your path, it’s a good idea to stick to the compacted tracks they leave. This will save you some energy in blazing your own trail, as well as helping to alert you to where other riders might have had trouble.
  4. Layer Up– Layering for snow can be tricky, there’s nothing worse than sweating under your rain shell because you’re too warm. A good rule of thumb is to keep rain pants, a rain jacket and warm gloves in your panniers for the whole of the winter. Underneath your rain gear, keep your layers breathable and warm, and take the time to shed or add layers if you need to. It’s easy to get your core temperature out of whack when you’re sweating in sub-freezing temperatures, so pay attention to your comfort, and adjust as necessary.
  5. Cold or Clean– One potential winter storage hazard is the possibility of freezing your gears or brake lines in place, which actually becomes more likely if you’re bringing your bike indoors for storage. Any thawed moisture left on your bike when you bring it back out into sub-freezing temperatures has the potential to become icy and hazardous. Therefore, some people recommend leaving your winter commuter bike in a cold garage overnight. If you’re not willing to saddle up a cold bike in the morning, the other solution is to be more vigilant about your daily wipedown, making sure everything is dry before you get outside. Click here to see our blog post on wiping down your ride.

With these tips in mind, have a safe commute, and we’ll see you on the roads!

Lovingly Maintained Used Bikes For Sale

It is rare that we have used bikes for sale, but this winter we are retiring a few of our handsome Multi-Speed rental bikes which means they’re officially up for adoption! These Breezers are amazingly reliable and have been well-maintained throughout their tenure in our fleet.  If you’re looking for a gem of a commuter cycle, any one of these just might be your new best friend!

We’ve got a few multi-speeds for sale, all internally geared, giving you more flexibility in shifting at red lights etc. They’re also equipped with equipment for easy connection of Dynamo rear lights, an easy way to avoid changing batteries on your pedal-powered steed. Each bike is sold as-is, complete with a bell and a rear rack, should panniers or a milk crate for cargo be in your future.

The frame sizes on the bikes for sale range from 19″ through 23.5″, feel free to stop by or give us a ring if you have any questions about the bikes or would like to take a Breezer out for a test ride!

We have them listed on Craigslist as well as on display in out shop in Old Town.  Here are links to the listing which will be updated as the bikes sell:

Medium Breezer Uptown 7

Medium Breezer Uptown 8

K2 Mach 2.0- SOLD !

Hybrid 8 speed used bikes for sale Hybrid 8 speed used bikes for sale Hybrid 8 speed used bikes for sale Hybrid 8 speed used bikes for sale Hybrid 8 speed used bikes for sale Hybrid 8 speed used bikes for sale Hybrid 8 speed used bikes for sale used bikes for sale road bike detail 2 used bikes for sale road bike detail 1 used bikes for sale road bike

Holiday Sale!

Attention Cycle Portland Customers! For the entire month of December, almost our entire store will be 20% off! We’re having a year-end clearance deal on all parts, accessories, components and gifts. This includes our sweet Portland-specific jerseys and other apparel like Cycle PDX teeshirts and our entire collection of “Sock It To Me” brand socks. For the bike commuters in your life, we’ve also got all of our lights, locks, fenders, saddles and more on sale. There are also a few super-sales happening, including our stock of now-discontinued Nutcase helmets (designed here in PDX!) and some of our bike light stock.

What can we say? We’re in the holiday spirit already! Come in soon to get the early bird privilege of first picks, stock will be moving quickly!

The discount doesn’t apply to service, rentals or tours, and can’t be combined with other discounts like our year-round local business discount.

Portland Art Museum presents: Andy Warhol

The Portland Art Museum (or PAM), situated along the scenic South Park Blocks in South-West is one of our favorite rainy-day activity recommendations for Portland visitors and residents alike. Founded in 1892, the PAM is one of the oldest art institutions in the western United States. Both buildings of the museum are visible as we roll through the park blocks on our Essential Portland city tours, and participants can get a quick glance into the sculpture garden that sits between them, a quiet haven of art on the edge of the downtown business and financial district.pdxart1

From now through January 1st, they’re hosting an exhibit of some of Warhol’s iconic work. “Andy Warhol: Prints from the Collections of Jordan D. Schnitzer and His Family Foundation” is an exhibit of work spanning the artists’ career from book illustration to the screenprinting that he is best known for. Arranged chronologically, the exhibit is a great introduction to the artists’ purpose for new viewers, and a new look into the process behind some of his most iconic work for fans. Featuring prints of Marilyn, Mao and a Campbell’s Soup can, the collection is not lacking the flare of Warhol’s most famous work.

Andy Warhol (American, 1928–1987). Mao (II.91), 1972. Screenprint. 36 x 36 in. Courtesy of Jordan D. Schnitzer and His Family Foundation. © 2016 The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, Inc. / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

Unlike many museums around the States, access to the Warhol exhibit is included with admission to the museum. An adult ticket on an average day costs $19.99, however the museum frequently runs promotions with discounted tickets for special occasions throughout the month. We recommend the museum as a good way to escape the weather this holiday season, and it makes a nice compliment of a half-day trip with our Essential Portland city tour, which will help to orient you in both the geography and history of the South Park Blocks.

Brew Cruise Guest Post: Richard Hall of Baerlic Brewing

“What the hell is a Baerlic?

Say bear-lick…like a bear licking the foam off a frosty mug. Etymologically, it’s an old-english adjective meaning “of barley.” As in there’s beer and then there’s baerlic beer! But feel free to use it whenever you want to describe something that you can’t get enough of. As in: “These waffles are baerlic!”
Born out of an undying passion for the perfect pint of beer, Baerlic Brewing Company is a collaborative entity created by us, Ben Parsons and Richard Hall. After years of brewing on the small scale in a basement and winning numerous awards in amateur competitions all over the region, we decided that we should finally give in to the voices in our heads and move toward a small scale production brewery and taproom.
When we say The Beer Here Is Near And Dear, we mean it. We strive to work in as close a proximity as possible for all our ingredients, materials, vendors, supplies, and suppliers. And that allows us to absolutely love the beer that we brew.”
– Richard Hall
The fruits of our Brew Cruise
Cheers!

So there you have it! Straight from the horse’s (bear’s?) mouth! Of Barley! Who knew?

We’re proud to partner with the folks at Baerlic during our frequent Brew Cruise tours. Participants get a chance to stop at their beautiful space, located just west of the historic Ladd’s Addition neighborhood. Though they’re possibly known best for their Cavalier Classic cream ale, it’s easy to find something tasty in their ever-rotating, 10-tap selection. They’re constantly experimenting and bringing in seasonal flavors and ingredients to capture a bit of the dynamic tradition of beer. With well over 80 breweries in PDX, the Brew Cruise has no shortage of options, but Baerlic has been a favorite of ours since it opened in 2014. We were pleased when just a year later, Thrillist Magazine named it among their top breweries in Portland in 2015. Come along to visit their lovely, mellow taproom, always full of natural light and great music.

On the Brew Cruise, we take participants to two local breweries, where they can sample Portland’s flavors at their own discretion, then come back to the shop for a final microbrew pint on the house. Aside from this liquid tourism, our guides offer local and historic insight into the neighborhoods we pass through, along with trivia on the city’s brewery culture.

Next time you’re in town, book a brew cruise to find out what all the fuss is about!

Happy Endings: Stolen Bike Recovered!

Last Wednesday was an exciting day for us in the shop– we helped recover a stolen bike! Thanks to Bike Index tweeting photos of the bike’s distinctive features, one of our employees recognized the bike when it walked through the door, and we were able to return it to its owner. Abra came in later that day for the happy reunion.  Bike Index tweeted us this photograph afterwards. We were thrilled to return this sweet ride to its owner.

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Like most big cities in the states, bike theft has become an unfortunate reality of Portland life. The National Bike Registry reports that bike theft has climbed around 10% in the US the last year. Bike theft is a notoriously difficult crime to both trace and prosecute. The best tool in the game, prevention-wise is a pair of anti-theft skewers on both wheels in combination with a sturdy U-Lock. The mini Kryptonite Evolution is our favorite for this purpose– it’s sturdy, and small enough that it’s tough to pry open with a car jack, which we’ve been seeing with increasing frequency around the city.

Should the worst happen, Bike Index is our best friend for stolen bike recovery. It’s also important to file a police report as soon as you are aware that your bike is missing. By registering your bike through bike index and reporting to PPD, you provide proof of ownership to shops like ourselves. The folks over at Bike Index are also experts at getting the word out to the community, which translates to more eyes out for your bike. We’re fortunate to live in a community that takes bike theft seriously, and when a bike is reported missing, shops all around the city keep our eyes open on your behalf. Most recoveries that we hear about on a day-to-day basis are the result of these community watch strategies. Happy endings like Abra’s are rare in circumstances without adequate documentation or verifiable information, so we’re in the practice of keeping a few photos and current info on all of our bikes just in case.

Meanwhile, we hope you can ride with confidence, knowing what you can do to prevent theft, and knowing that we’ve got your back when things go wrong!