Author Archives: Bill Gobie

Permanent Route Updates

Route 01234 Wayne’s Choice is reinstated with new routing on the Snoqualmie Valley Trail in place of the closed bridge on Fish Hatchery Rd.

Longing for warm dry weather? Try the new Death Valley routes (be careful what you wish for!). Both start in Furnace Creek 180 ft below sea level:

Closures

Middle Fork Rd is closed due to a slide. No other information is available at present.

The usual roads are flooded in the Duvall-Carnation-Fall City area. https://gismaps.kingcounty.gov/mycommute/

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Permanent Route Updates

Catching up on newly added & reactivated routes

Mitch Ishihara reactivated 02577 Sultan Sandy Coffee Run, 129 km. Many of us have already ridden this route as the 125-149 km Rouleur series route.

Geoff Swarts contributed three new routes:

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2022 February 5 Winter 200 km Pre-Ride Report

Pre-riders: Mitch Ishihara, John Nguyen

RUSA Brevet #2134 Redmond, Lakes, Falls, and Trails – features Peet’s Coffee, Granite Falls (multiple bakery, food, and coffee options), Postdoc Brewing Company

The route features low elevation (below 240 meters/790 feet) on rural roads. 

From the start in Redmond, make a gradual climb up to Echo Lake passing through a short gravel/dirt trail. Descend down to Tualco Valley and Monroe. Climb up rolling hills to Lake Chaplain. Follow it up with a rolling climb up to Lake Roesiger. Continue with a rolling descent down to Granite Falls with multiple food options (roughly the half-way point). Make a net descent across additional rolling hills out to Arlington. Take a short out and back to Bryant followed by the gradual railroad trail grades on the Centennial Trail to Snohomish. Make one more lumpy climb before finishing on the Sammamish River Trail back to Postdoc Brewing Company in Redmond. All of this packed in against a few scenic peeks of mountains in the distance.

The Route

Ride with GPS: https://ridewithgps.com/routes/22218260 

Plenty of lumpy rolling hills before gradual 1-2% railroad grades on the Centennial Trail and flat Sammamish River Trail.

Parking

There’s parking near the finish at Postdoc Brewing Company on NE 65th Street in Redmond.

And parking near the start at Peet’s Coffee at Lake Sammamish Trail Parking off of NE 70th Street in Redmond.

Start location @ Peet’s Coffee

We’ll gather in front of Peet’s Coffee.

Compact Gravel/Dirt Trail to Echo Lake

Entrance to trail – do not go through the arch on the left.

Fresh composting foliage covers the trail.

We removed the small fallen tree.

But that’s about all we would do…

Hello Mr. Ed

Oh deer!

Info Control – Echo Lake and Aspen Way

11.4 miles / 18.3 km

Monroe

23.2 miles / 36.5 km 

Water and restroom at Lewis Street Park on right. 7-11 on Main Street.

Lake Chaplain Service Road

During a temperature inversion, go higher to get out of the cold lowland fog!

Info Control – Lake Chaplain

34.9 miles / 56.1 km

Fog billows over mountain peaks

Our last glimpse of warm sunshine for the day

Back down into the fog

Info Control – Lake Roesiger Park

48.9 miles / 78.6 km

The fog cleared briefly as we climbed up to the park.

Lake Roesiger Store

50.0 miles / 80.4 km

Last services until Granite Falls.

Granite Falls

58.1 miles / 93.5 km – almost half-way!

The place formerly known as Hanky Pies

First course…

Second course…

Centennial Trail to Bryant

Info Control – Bryant

75.7 miles / 121.8 km

“Uhm. John, we’re going to need a new info control.” Talked to the friendly new owners.

Arlington

79.4 miles / 127.8 km

Legion Memorial Park

Water and Restrooms on right

Who’s idea was this to ride in the fog?🥶

Machias Station Park

96.3 miles / 155.0 km

Water and Restrooms (dusk to dawn)

…on Broadway

They say there’s always magic in the air

Finish – Postdoc Brewing Company

125.0 miles / 201 km

Hazy IPA for a hazy day!

Was bone chilling!

Your weather forecast

In Redmond

Epic Ride Weather

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2022 January 29 Rouleur 150-199 km Ride Report: Snohomish – La Conner Out & Back 159K

Advance scouting: Mitch Ishihara, John Nguyen, Andy Sapuntzakis, Kevin Smith

Pre-Riders: Mark Thomas, Jan Acuff

RUSA Brevet #2887 Snohomish – La Conner Out & Back – features Looking Glass Coffee (closed for remodel) outside Spada Farmhouse Brewery, La Conner (multiple bakery and coffee options), Spada Farmhouse Brewery

The route features low elevation (below 110 meters/360 feet), gradual railroad trail grades with flat farm pastures, on rural roads against a scenic backdrop of the Cascade foothills and maybe a peek of Mt. Baker.

From the start in Snohomish, make a gentle climb on the Centennial Trail until passing under the HWY 9 overpass. Descend down into Arlington for a restroom pit stop, coffee (off-route one block), or baked goods. Make another gradual climb past Lake McMurray before descending down HWY 534 to Conway. Meander across the flats out to La Conner, with a chance to see Bald Eagles perched in trees. Grab some baked goods (or breakfast/lunch) at La Conner (multiple options). Return back to Snohomish for a finish at Spada Farmhouse Brewery.

The Route

Ride with GPS: https://ridewithgps.com/routes/38225344 

Long, gradual 1-2% railroad grades on the Centennial Trail itself and Skagit flats.

Start location @ Spada Farmhouse Brewery

We’ll try to gather in front, on the sidewalk/adjacent lot. There’s also an empty field of green grass across the street (Snohomish Farmers Market) in case we need a larger space.

Centennial Trail

Frequently featured in SIR routes and well-traveled, Centennial Trail provides a shared-use refuge for cyclists and pedestrians. Make note of the bollards though.

Arlington

Restrooms at Legion Memorial Park at around 22 miles / 36 km

The Lounge at Moe’s is off-route one block on Olympic Ave. Take West 5th Street from the Centennial Trail and turn right onto Olympic Ave.

Skagit Flats

Up in the trees and on power poles, you may see Bald Eagles.

Down low in the fields flocks of geese honk.

Out far across the Skagit flats, snow capped mountains hide behind clouds.

La Conner

48.9 miles / 78.7 km – about half-way there!

Wikipedia

Gilkey Square – La Conner Info Control

49.3 miles / 79.4 km at the end of Morris Street, you’ll arrive at Gilkey Square where the info control can be found. Mark read my mind on a reasonable landmark question. HINT: we won’t be asking you to find a yellow fire hydrant with numbers on it but the actual sign with the info control question will be nearby.

Soak in the view of the Swinomish Channel.

Refuel & Rest

After the info control, there are numerous options in La Conner to refuel, caffeinate, and grab a pint if you like.

Search on Google Maps: 

Highlighting a few…

North: 

  • The Scone Lady Bakery, 109 N 1st St, La Conner, WA 98257

South:

  • La Conner Coffee Company, 602 1st St, La Conner, WA 98257
  • Calico Cupboard Old Town Cafe, 720 1st St, La Conner, WA 98257

East: 

  • Public Restrooms, 302 Morris St, La Conner, WA 98257
  • NW Fuel Cafe, 313 Morris St #4, La Conner, WA 98257
  • Pioneer Market, 416 Morris St, La Conner, WA 98257
  • Stompin Grounds Coffee Co, 603 Morris St, La Conner, WA 98257

And back…

Kevin stashed and encouraged us to Lake McMurray with a hand pie on the return!

CAUTION: Arlington, Centennial Trail is on the sidewalk along 67th AVE NE against the flow of traffic. Automobiles cross trail from side streets. Take note of stop signs. Drivers may not see you.

Weather Forecast

For Snohomish

For La Conner

Epic Ride Weather

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2022 January 22 Rouleur 125-149 km Pre-Ride Report

Pre-riders: Mitch Ishihara and John Nguyen

Distance: 130K (0.1 km gravel), 81 miles
[The finishing time of 8h 40m is based on the official distance of 130 km. Detours may make the actual route longer. You will still have to finish in 8h 40m.]

Elevation (max / accumulative): 173 m / 1090 m, 567 feet / 3576 feet

Brevet #: 2876 

Name: Sultan Bakery Sandy Coffee Sumerian Beer

Route: https://ridewithgps.com/routes/38225020
[The route may be updated Thursday night/Friday morning depending on the status of flooded roads.]

Features: Sultan Bakery, Sandy’s Espresso, Sumerian Brewing Company

SIR Event Listing

There is a perpetually flooded road through a wetland. Detour required.

These people did not make it through.

Tualco Valley had barns and farm stubble.

There were water-over-roadway signs (but not closed).

Automobiles successfully crossed.

So did we. Too much fun.

Snow decorated the mountain backdrops.

Snow decorated the side of the road too… but melting.

We ate lunch at a bakery.

There were a enough tough hills.

More roads were closed. Detours required.

Rivers ran full.

Sandy’s Espresso was open.

We climbed up Tolt Hill Road above the flooded River Road.

There were nice views from up high.

We rode through a fancy neighborhood.

We saw blue skies and sunsets.

We drank beer.

Good times!

The weather forecast for January 22nd looks promising.

For Woodinville, WA

And for the route…

Aerial view of the route with some photos on Relive.

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January 15 Rouleur 100-125k Pre-Ride Report

Preriders: Bill Gobie and Bradley Hawkins

SIR Event Listing

There was a landslide.

There were flooded roads. Curiously there were more flooded roads the higher we went.

There was snow. The route is “low elevation (below 300 meters/1000 feet)” they said.

We had a good time.

Conditions should be much better on the 15th.

It will be fun!

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Summer 300 km Brevet – Three Volcanoes 2.0

Mt Adams from road 2329

Update 5/6/22: The new owners of Hotel Packwood intend to begin taking bookings in June. We will attempt to reserve a block of rooms for riders.


Preliminary route: https://ridewithgps.com/routes/30755658

It has been a long decade since the Three Volcanoes route was last run. (Four Volcanoes is best left unmentioned.) Road washouts and then a plague scrubbed the route. With some luck things will go well enough in 2022 for us to revisit the wild country between Mts Rainier, Adams, and St Helens.

The route has been altered in several places from the old version of Three Volcanoes. We will spend less time on road 23, which carries most of the auto traffic between Randle and Trout Lake. The route visits spectacular Takhlakh Lake beneath Mt Adams. To keep the distance to a manageable 314 km the southern side of the route uses road 30.

In all there are four gravel segments totaling 37 km. Historically the route has been manageable on 28 mm tires. Road 30 has not been evaluated yet.

The ride is based in Packwood, WA. The start will be at dawn, 0500, July 23.

In the past Hotel Packwood has offered economical accommodations. The hotel is being renovated and no one is answering the telephone. We will attempt to reserve a block of rooms but at present riders should make their own overnight reservations elsewhere.

Mt Adams outside Trout Lake

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Bridge News

West Seattle Low Bridge Closures

The Spokane St bridge aka the West Seattle Low Bridge will have planned maintenance closures tomorrow, Dec 19, and on four Sundays in January. Closures may last up to 30 minutes. Planned times are around 9AM, 1PM, and 5PM. In January closures will be on January 9, 16, 23, and 30. SDOT project page.

Tukwila Bridge is (almost) falling down

Image
Tukwila Police Dept

The 42nd Ave S bridge was hit by a truck. Currently it is closed pending evaluation. While we have no routes that cross the bridge, the Green River Trail passes under the bridge. Presently the trail remains open.

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Permanent Route Updates

End of the Carbon River Rd, Dec 15, 2021

The Carbon River permanents (2144 MI-Carbon River and 2100 Sumner-Carbon River) are reinstated. The road is closed about 100 yards before the old turnaround point, so even with slight shortening both still qualify as 200 and 100 km routes, respectively. Access is not permitted beyond the closure. The Park Service is exploring building a temporary trail on the adjacent private land. Long-term the Park Service intends to rebuild the road to reopen access to the trails.

Note the snow in the photo! A person might not expect snow at 1800 feet. In winter it pays to check snow conditions for the higher-elevation lowland routes. The Carbon River Rd has a couple of bridges that were entirely iced over on the 15th.

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Permanent Route Updates

Frenchman Coulee

04291 Basin’s Edge, 202 km, was created from the popular Basin’s Edge 200k brevet.

Suspended Routes

02100 Sumner-Carbon River and 02214 Mercer Island-Carbon River have been suspended due to flood damage on the Carbon River entrance road.

01234 Wayne’s Choice has been suspended due to permanent removal of a small bridge on Fish Hatchery Rd. Alternative routings are being considered.

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