A gorgeous fall day, great riding companions, and a wonderful bike route! Could one ask for more? Why? It was even a leisurely start. Don Boothby had sent out a notice for a Sat ride of the Three Rivers Cruise with a 8:00 AM start at the Haggen store in Arlington. Don, Thai Nguyen, Chris Heg, Mike Richeson, new RUSA member Pam Creighton, and I hit the road right at 8:00. Shan Perera got a few extra minutes of sleep and caught up with us on the road.
There was a bit of fog to start off with, but the sun was blazing through the clouds before we were able to make to Darrington. Darrington ... at 575 feet we had reached the summit of our ride ... pretty tough riding :) ... well, a good enough reason to stop and refuel. Soon we were off ... except Thai stayed to wait for Shan.
From Darrington the ride was picture perfect ... a crisp fall morning with lots of sun. The gentle downhill made for nice riding and we soon made it to Marblemount. We took the back way to Marblemount ... exploring a minor route adjustment to avoid the out & back section on 20 ... and it received favorable reviews!
Also receiving good reviews were the soups at lunch. A couple of miles west of Marblemount we stopped for lunch - soup & pie. I had chile & onions. It hit the spot.
Now for that after lunch siesta ... well, maybe next time.
The ride from Marblemount to Concrete on SR-20 was generally pretty nice. Most of the time the rumble strips were a nice addition, but there were a few instances where the construction crews must have been asleep on the machine. To the right was one example where there is no way that this could be within specifications. Arghh!
Well, once we got past Concrete the rumble strips were behind us and it was chip seal instead. It actually wasn't too bad as it was fairly old so it had been packed down. Still, the riding surface on SR-9 was a welcome change. Mike and I rode ahead of the others at this point. Towards the south end of Big Lake there was a serious accident ... two fire trucks, two aid cars, and a rescue truck were all at the scene. As we past, a police unit arrived and must have closed the road. Don, Pam, Chris, Shan, and Thai all had to backtrack and ride around the other side of the lake. Six bonus miles! Mike and I reached the end at 5 ... we had a tailgate party waiting for the others to pull in shortly after 6.
A nice day!