Thursday, May 27, 2010

The Hills Are Alive...with the sound of wheezing!

Since I still felt the need to explore a little more of Little Hanaford Rd. and the Hanaford Valley (turns out that really is it's name!), I found a route in "Bicycling the Backroads of Southwest Washington" that was called "Hanaford Valley". It is only a 38 mile loop, but going from home and picking up the route at Bucoda definately made it longer. From Bucoda I continued down 507 until I decided to take a little detour off the route and head up Flumerfelt Rd. Head UP is right! At times the road was so steep I had to shift into Super Granny Gear! I have not encountered many roads that have required me to gear down so low when not loaded down with panniers and stuff (in fact, I can think of only one other hill from the Seattle Century and, who knows, if I hadn't had the stomach flu, I may not have needed Super Granny there!). When I got to the top I thought, "Great! Now I get to go down!" Which I did...for awhile. Then it was up and down all the way back to 507. Even though it was traffic-free and quite scenic (see Zenkner Valley photo), I'm not sure I would do it again.
I continued on 507 toward Centralia and turned on Reynolds Ave. Reynolds goes under I-5 (no onramp or offramp) where I turned on Johnson Rd. and was taken into the area just west of the Outlets. As it was noon and I was hungry, I found a Subway I haven't eaten at and had lunch. From there it was a block back over to Johnson where I continued to Borst Park to use the restroom (yes, I know Subway has one, but there were a ton of people there and I didn't want to leave Stella unattended). After my potty break, I took a couple of back roads to Galvin Rd. and on to Galvin where I went up Joppish Rd. (when I was trying to get lost a few weeks ago--previous post--I had come down Joppish--I think I remembered it as Jobbish). Joppish was a very long climb (as I recall, it was VERY NICE coming down). That was okay because that meant I got to go DOWN Cooks Hill Rd. That little descent was a 14% grade. I got up to 43.9 mph (yep, exceeding the speed limit of 35)! Woo Hoo! That was fun!
I worked my way back into Centralia but only to continue through onto Salzer Valley Rd. It meanders east along Salzer Creek eventually crossing it. I actually saw two other cyclists going the other direction. Saw this one street called Proffitt Rd. I thought it was a little excessive with the "f"s and "t"s.
Eventually I came around to Little Hanaford Rd. further east than I had been before. From there I turned onto Teitzel Rd. again. This time I watched the mileage on the really rough part. Although it seemed like forever, turned out it was only about 2.5 miles.
I still had to do the two climbs on Tono Rd., but that was it since I took the trail back instead of Hwy. 99. Total miles for today: 78

A little detour from the route. Not one I would do again (at least not in that direction).
The view from Zenkner Valley Rd.
Thankfully, going down this time.

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