Central Oregon has a new riding area!! Located just east of Madras, the East Hills Trail System features separate trails for horses and mountain bikes, with about 10 miles of trail available for each type of user. Hikers and trail runners are allowed on all the trails.
The equestrian trails are a set of four stacked loops you can mix and match to create the ride you want. The trails explore hills, ravines, juniper forest, and open grassland. From several vantage points, you’ll have splendid views of Mt. Jefferson, Mt. Hood, the Crooked River Grasslands, and the town of Madras.
All the trail junctions are marked, with carsonite signposts adorned with arrows pointing the way. The trails are low elevation, so they’re rideable virtually year-round. It’s a fun trail network, so give it a try!
The Central Oregon Trails Alliance (COTA), a mountain biking group, is building the trails, with help from an equestrian group called Spur of the Moment. It’s delightful to see different types of users coming together to help each other develop the trail network. When you see these volunteers out working on the trail, please give them a huge thank you (or a donation!) for their efforts.
The Madras East Hills Trails are covered in detail in Riding Central Oregon Horse Trails, by Kim McCarrel, available at www.NWHorseTrails.com.