Oregon's own Mt. Scott Motorcycle Club hosts the state's first organized "Hill Climb" in decades on Sunday near Tillamook, OR with hopes to rekindle the event for years to come.
Hill climbs first emerged in the 1940s after World War II when veterans returning from an adrenaline fueled war were looking for more out of life. Motorcycle clubs formed and riders competed in flat track racing and the aforementioned hill climbs.
A hill climb is exactly that, a motorcyclist attempts to climb a very steep hill on the motorcycle of their choosing. Most don't make it. Riders bring all types of motorcycles, but usually a dirt bike is the model of choice.
"Hill climbs offer one of the most challenging obstacles a rider can tackle on a motorcycle," said Dave Keogh, secretary of the Mt. Scott MC. "It requires a unique set of skills to accomplish but most of all it's a lot of fun."
Richard Clay reaches the apex of a hill circa 1964
Hill climb competitions were commonplace in the 1960s and the Pacific Northwest included their fair share. Riders were split into classes based on ability much like Motocross is today and Richard Clay was a popular local name back in the day to have traveled across the country and win Championships in both the United States and Canada. The sport lost popularity in the 1980s as other styles of off-road racing emerged and hill climbs became a thing of the past.
The "No Wimps Hill Climb" takes place in the Tillamook forest on a 900 foot tall 65 to 70 degree sloped hill called "Back-to-Back." Riders get three minutes to make it to the top or return to the starting line. All bikes must have a current Oregon state ATV sticker, spark arrestor and ATV safety card to enter. Registration is limited to 100 riders. Winner gets a trophy and bragging rights.
"We are expecting a full house and hope to make this an annual event," Keogh said.
Written By: AndrewT