I am heading south to Mexico following, at the moment the Sierra Cascades Route designed by Adventure cycling. After Cheryl Strayed wrote her book “Wild”, they decided to create a bike route that would follow the Pacific Crest Trail, but on road.
So on August 31st I headed out to visit my son Jonathan in Victoria, having left all my worldly goods in storage with a friend in Royston. Then I took the ferry to Anacortes and up to Bellingham to get a new rain jacket (which has performed marvelously so far). I stayed with Warmshowers hosts- Jeanie and Mike and met their friends Sue and Paul at dinner that night.
After Bellingham I camped in Sedro-Woolley at the city park – nice grass sites for $10 a night with showers. Along came Robert, a homeless person, who asked if he could share the site and give me $5. We had a chat. He had been laid off his job and was just starting to collect UI. So he was choosing to be homeless for a while like me. He is thinking of heading up to Alaska to work and then kayaking back. Of course being the dreamer that I am, I encouraged him to follow his dream. That night was the first rain for the whole Summer and on green grass to boot.
From there I followed the Cascades Trail (40 km’s on a beautiful rail trail) to Rasar SP. All the Washington State Parks have hiker/biker sites for $12 a night. They also have a policy to never turn away a hiker or biker, unlike BC Parks.
The next 2 nights we had heavy rain resulting in splashback on my new Hilleberg Anjan tent. So I contacted the American Alpine Institute. They took it back and I got the Namattj 2 Hillebrand 4 season tent. It had been recommended by different reviewers, if you could only have 1 tent to do it all this is it. It was the tent Hillebrand recommended – lesson learned.
The next adventure with the new tent was a night of rain (nice and dry) and then a long 30 mile climb up to Washngton Pass at 1 mile high. It was cold and took over 8 hours of riding. Arriving in Winthrop, I stayed with Mary Ellen and Rob. I had met her in a park earlier bike touring and she had invited me to stay with her and her husband. Winthrop is a small town with 200 km’s of cross country ski trails. It has produced 4 members of the US Olympic team – 2 gold medalists. Great mountain biking in summer.
After a great visit with them I had a nice ride to Pateros and camped in City Park beside the Columbia River. Many towns have a city park for camping at a very reasonable rate and include showers. For the past few days the route has been following the river. Parts are beautiful and parts are downright ugly.
I am staying 2 nights in Confluence SP and enjoying the beautiful city of Wenatchee with a 10 mile loop trail that crosses over the river twice and a beautiful market complex with coffee, restaurants and a local micro brewery. I’ll head out tomorrow for a 2 day ride to Ellensburg and camp for the first time in a US Forestry Site. Basic and usually free.
Not a lot of photo opportunities so far, but here are a few starters:
Flickr Link: https://flic.kr/s/aHsmiTezdf
Spot Messenger: see where I am and have been for last 7 days: