Kim came over this morning to ride with me as far as Yelm. She was kind enough to take this photo so I didn't have to roust one of my sons out of bed.
Whoa...this is heavy! I'm surprised I was able to stand upright with only one foot on the ground.
As I suspected, the going was slow. Mama Cass and Johnny P were definitely at their heaviest. It takes a bit of riding to get used to the way they handle.
We made it to Yelm without incident.See the water? That's the river. See the logging road? That's on the other side of the river!
Goodbye Kim! See you in a couple months!
On my own, I made it through the rest of Yelm, and to McKenna. As I turned on Hwy 702, I could see up ahead what looked like another touring cyclist. Since there was no way I could hammer the pedals, I hoped the person would stop at some point and I could catch up. 702 is a little rolling with an upward trend (not unlike my entire day today). Soon I realized I was getting closer. Then I could see there were actually two cyclists. The one I had not been able to see was on a recumbent. Before long I caught up to them. We started chatting while we were still rolling. They were Kelly and her dad Joe. They had started in Copalis. Kelly would be finishing in Indiana, but Joe was going to Florida. They said they were going to go over White Pass, but they were going to Morton. I recommended continuing to Skate Creek Rd, as I was doing, then coming into Packwood, and heading up White Pass from there. They didn't have the most detailed map (something I am quite familiar with!). I tried to explain that Packwood was closer to White Pass, and they could scoot over to Ohanapecosh and camp so as to start White Pass in the morning (after staying at Big Creek Campground like I was doing). Not sure if I convinced them.
Kelly and Joe
We exchanged blog cards, and I headed on up the road. I was going faster than they were (even MC is faster up the hills than a loaded recumbent).
At Hwy 7, I took a right. I had checked, and it was shorter to stay on the Mountain Hwy than to go through Eatonville. Plus, beyond the Ohop Valley was new riding territory for me (until the other turnoff to Eatonville anyway). It was quite hilly, and although I didn't employ Super Granny Gear, I was darn close!
It was coming up on noon, and I was ready to stop for some lunch. I saw the entrance to the UofW Pack Forest, and there was a building there that had a porch. Perfect!
Lunch of bagel with Nutella and peanut butter.
I talked to a couple who had pulled off at the view point and told them how I had been over there, trying to get to Hwy 7 before. Now I knew better.
Before long, I was going by Alder Lake. It is really frightening how little water there is for mid-June.
Lots of stumps!
After Alder Lake, I went through Elbe, then Ashford. I was tempted to stop at that cafe in Ashford (where we've started rides up to Paradise) and get some ice cream. But...I told Kim I'd try to lose 10 pounds on this trip since she has to lose 10 while I'm gone. So, no ice cream today...*sigh* (really though, how long do you think that's going to last?).
Longer than I thought after Ashford, was the turn to end up on Skate Creek Rd., and Big Creek Campground. Once I made the turn, it was only 2 more miles to the campground. I'm in a nice little spot. I can hear the creek, but can't see it. Oh, I finally got to try out my new laundry system, The Scrubba. It seemed to work just fine. No shower tonight, but I took one this morning (and, of course, I didn't sweat at all today!)
Total Miles: 56.4
Average speed: 9.2 (not bad since there was far more uphill than down)