Few may have experienced the feelings you’ll have on Dooley Mountain Highway/OR Route 245, otherwise known as Little Dragon. From its tight turns to its winding roadways, this wide-open stretch located in eastern Oregon is the perfect blend of thrill and reflection. As you take on the 200 corners in this 14-mile route, you’ll quickly realize that Little Dragon is one of the most iconic rides in the west, nestled among sleepy towns, massive mountains, and breathtaking valleys. If you’re in the mood for a ride that’s unlike the rest, open up your Thirsty Biker apps, and let’s start exploring the lay of the land. In episode 28 of the Thirsty Biker Chronicles, prepare for a rush of adrenaline through Oregon’s Little Dragon.
You’ll want to start your epic journey in the small town of Unity, where you’ll then head north on US-26 until you reach OR-245. You’ll then follow OR-245 for 37 miles north and east, past the Unity Reservoir, where you’ll travel north to Stices Gulch. Meeting with Sumpter Stage Highway/Route 7, heading east toward Baker City or west toward Phillips Lake. When you’re ready to take a load off and refuel, we recommend Ole’s Tavern in Weiser, Idaho, for cold beer, plus loads of ways to let off some steam. Ole’s is where to stop by and settle in for some laid-back local charm, from darts to pool, a jukebox, and an arcade machine.
Once you’re ready to move on, head to Bert’s Growler Garage in Ontario, Oregon, for over 38 beverages on tap, including a rotating selection of craft beers, sangria, and more. If you’ve worked up an appetite, their menu won’t disappoint, with everything from Greek gyros to tacos and salads to beef brisket. Perhaps the most remarkable find is all the classic cars on the property, courtesy of Bert’s Motors. So, if you’re into old cars and want to see a bit of history up close and personal, Bert’s is the place to go. We end our trip at the Sundance Saloon in Payette, Idaho, for some of the coldest, most refreshing drinks in town, delectable food, and tons of live music. At the end of this iconic journey, you deserve a place to sit back and take in the area to the fullest, which is exactly what you’ll be able to do here.
You can expect a quiet ride through Little Dragon as you carefully navigate the territory and its lush landscaping. With the smell of wheatgrass in the air and a feeling of euphoria settling around you, maneuvering through the area’s vast array of twists and turns will be easy as you focus on your ride and nothing else. Take note that these tight turns are rated between 10-25 mph, so accommodating these intricate curves is a must; however, the road is in good condition, so you’ll enjoy smooth riding throughout the area. Little Dragon will deliver that to you and then some if you want the perfect blend of euphoria mixed with tranquility. So, Thirsty Bikers, are you ready for a wild ride in the west? Then, let’s fire up those apps and get rolling…dragon-style.