Thursday, July 14, 2011


For someone who's only possibly maybe considering riding the Mount Shasta Summit Century, I've sure been putting in a lot of upward-tilting riding behavior lately. Monday was four times up Squalicum Mountain Road with two of the repeats starting at Northshore Drive and Academy Road (15-percent grade for the first few hundred yards). Academy to Toad Lake to Squalicum Mountain is a sustained 3-mile climb that gains just about a thousand feet.

Yesterday was fat-tire climbing Cleator Road and Burnout Road with a side exploration for what seems to be the sadly departed (and ironically named) So Easy trail. Depending on where you start, the roads are good for 40- and 30-some minutes of sustained climbing. Not exactly sure, for unfortunately my beloved Garmin 500 do-hickey kinda went haywire on me. I got caught in a foggy downpour (as the above pic sorta attests) but I hope-slash-can't imagine that that was the cause of my Garmin's current spot of bother. It's certainly not the first time it's gotten wet.
Looking across the Land of the Lost toward Lake Samish and Lookout Mountain (in clouds).
Re: So Easy, known as Ender and Rockyard on Darrell Sofield's terrific Chuckanut Mountains map, I did not --as Bono sings on one of the biggest hits on "The Joshua Tree"--find what I was looking for. Or rather, I didn't find a ridable trail, just sort of a messy (ish) path (ish) that kinda continued but nothing that beckoned, This is the way! Admittedly, I went only a hundred yards or so, but carrying a mountain bike through the above tangle isn't a good idea especially when you're by yourself. So I headed north down the new logging roads across the open clear-cut (incredible views) and met up with the Dictionary Trail (called Overlander on Solfield's map) and back down toward Fragrance Lake Road and the Interurban. Before I did I snapped off a few pics.
Past the clearcut one can see Bellingham Bay and the lowland part of Lummi Island; Chuckanut Mountain (Chinscraper side) is in the foreground. The curving dirt road leads to the Dictionary trail.

Moving a few degrees to the right (east), that's Lost Lake between Chuckanut Mountain and the big ridge one needs to climb to get to the Pine and Cedar Lakes side of the world. 

On the way out, I stopped at Clayton Beach at the south end of Larrabee State Park. (Must remember not to tilt my head when taking self-photos; it don't look butch. And the upside-down glasses behavior looks dodgy as well.)
In other biking news, last Sunday Bake and I headed up to Galby for the first time in perhaps a year. Had a great time. The top Pig and then Atomic Dog (which I kept mixing up with Unemployment Line and refrerring to as Unemployment Dog) which he found great fun!

 Oh, and check out my latest story about 5 Roads to Nowhere in today's Seattle Times.   

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