Cycling and bicycle discussion forums. 
   Click here to join our community Log in to access your Control Panel  


Go Back   > > >

Pacific Northwest Idaho | Oregon | Washington | Alaska

User Tag List

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 01-12-09, 07:07 PM   #1
Mt_Top
Richly Poor!
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: NW USA
Bikes: ICE
Posts: 26
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
WA - low traffic ride (question might be 30 years late?)

I may be a few years too late with this question, but I'm wondering if there are any low traffic areas to ride in. General requirements:
1) WA state
2) 2 to 4 hour ride time
3) 20 to 60 mile ride length
4) mostly on road (paved and/or unpaved)
5) more interesting than riding the same 1 mile backroad multiple times to get the mileage
6) low traffic being maybe 1 motor vehicle every 10 minutes

Personally, I can't think of anywhere in the state with rideable roads and little to no traffic.

Thanks for riding along......
Mt_Top is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-12-09, 08:38 PM   #2
Mtn Mike
Super Biker
 
Mtn Mike's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: Spokane WA
Bikes: 2008 Lapierre X-Lite, 2006 Serotta Coeur d’Acier, 2005 Independent Fabrication Steel Delux, 2003 Surly 1x1, 2003 Surly Cross Check, 1986 Schwin Worldsport SS commuter, 1980's Mongoose Supergoose
Posts: 1,183
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mt_Top View Post
I may be a few years too late with this question, but I'm wondering if there are any low traffic areas to ride in. General requirements:
1) WA state
2) 2 to 4 hour ride time
3) 20 to 60 mile ride length
4) mostly on road (paved and/or unpaved)
5) more interesting than riding the same 1 mile backroad multiple times to get the mileage
6) low traffic being maybe 1 motor vehicle every 10 minutes

Personally, I can't think of anywhere in the state with rideable roads and little to no traffic.

Thanks for riding along......
Check out the east side of the state

/thread
Mtn Mike is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-12-09, 09:50 PM   #3
norsehabanero
Just a student
 
norsehabanero's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Yakima, wa
Bikes: Cannondale, schiwin old road bike fuji a unicycle
Posts: 277
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
there are a few roads like that around yakima
norsehabanero is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-12-09, 10:18 PM   #4
aRoudy1
Senior Member
 
aRoudy1's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Cle Elum, WA
Bikes: Rans Stratus LE, Terra Trike Sport
Posts: 248
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
There are roads all around Cle Elum that would qualify during the week; during the weekend, not so much--there may be a couple of cars every 10 minutes.
aRoudy1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-12-09, 10:32 PM   #5
Mr. Markets
Who has a good sense of humor for going along with my little April Fool Gag (The Admin)
 
Mr. Markets's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: on my laptop
Bikes: Longbikes Slipstream
Posts: 4,066
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 307 Post(s)
during the daytime hours you can do Mercer Island (15 miles round) on pavement. Go clockwise and
you get shoulder for a good part of the ride as well.
__________________
Sometimes I wonder whether the world is being run by smart people who are putting us on or by imbeciles who really mean it.

Laurence J. Peter (1919-1990), educator and “hierarchiologist,” The Peter Principle (1969)
Mr. Markets is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-12-09, 10:55 PM   #6
northbend 
Senior Member
 
northbend's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: North Bend, Washington State
Bikes: 1937 Hobbs; 1977 Bruce Gordon; Merckx MX Leader (Campy 10); Schwinn Paramount (Fixed gear); Fat City Yo Eddy (MTB), Alex Singer (allrounder)
Posts: 1,558
Mentioned: 10 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 17 Post(s)
Try the north cascades hwy from winthrop to washington pass.
northbend is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-12-09, 10:58 PM   #7
BengeBoy 
Senior Member
 
BengeBoy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Seattle, Washington, USA
Bikes: 2014 Pivot Mach 5.7 MTB, 2009 Chris Boedeker custom, 1988 Tommasini Prestige, 2007 Bill Davidson custom; 1988 Specialized Stumpjumper
Posts: 6,941
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I'm assuming you already have thought about the Burke Gilman trail? If you rode it from Ballard to Kenmore, and then took the Sammamish River portion all the way to Redmond it's a pretty long ride, and no car traffic except for intersections.

On the road:

I did this ride last year on a Saturday. Parts of it were pretty quiet; nice scenery:

http://www.seattlebiketours.org/memb...ck_diamond.pdf

I also found the route of the Skagit Spring Classic quite enjoyable. Check out the sections of this map on the east side of I5, which is south of Lake Whatcom. Nice roads, little traffic.

http://www.skagitbicycleclub.org/pdf/62_100_map.pdf
BengeBoy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-12-09, 11:01 PM   #8
scozim 
Ellensburg, WA
 
scozim's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Ellensburg, WA
Bikes: See my signature
Posts: 2,786
Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5 Post(s)
I grew up in Whitman County (Pullman, etc) and there are a lot of roads there that would qualify. The busiest time of the year on some of them is during the wheat harvest. My dad's been riding over there for 25 yrs with little trouble - hwy 195 is the busiest road he's on but it's got a nice 6 foot shoulder.

Some of the other counties in southeast Washington would also qualify - pretty rural.
__________________
1984 Gitane Sprint; 1984 Gitane Tour de France;1982 Trek 610; 1980's Univega Supra Sport (fixie); 1975 Teledyne Titan; 1968 Peugeot PL8; ;1982 Nishiki Marina 12; 1972 Peugeot PX-10; 1987 Trek 800 Antelope (touring/commuting set up); 1981 Trek 510; 1993 Trek 950 mtb; 1996 Klein Pulse II mtb; 1997 Klein Pulse Comp mtb; 1989 Peugeot Limestone hybrid (for touring); 1989 Spectrum Titanium
scozim is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-12-09, 11:16 PM   #9
unixpro
Laid back bent rider
 
unixpro's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Burien, WA
Bikes: Bacchetta Giro 20
Posts: 1,134
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
The BG trail is good, although often crowded so you'll to watch your speed.

There's also the Interurban/Green River trail. You can pick up the Interurban at its start near South Park and ride it through Tukwilla, over to the start of the GR trail at SouthCenter, and then follow that down past Auburn. A nice long ride usually without heavy congestion that passes through some very nice scenery. It's also pretty much flat.

Doing a circuit around Lake Washington is also a good distance ride, although you'll have to deal with signigicant sections where you'll share the road with cars.

Check out the Seatthe Bicycle Touring Club maps library at http://www.seattlebiketours.org/members/library.html. Lots of good rides there.
unixpro is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-12-09, 11:50 PM   #10
lakay
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Marysville, Wa
Bikes: 2007 Specialized Transition
Posts: 56
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Take Marine View drive on the weekend, from Marysville to Stanwood or you can start at Stanwood take pioneer to La Conner. Try Centennial Trail, 35 miles of paved blacktop and no traffic at all.
lakay is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-13-09, 02:46 PM   #11
rnorris
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Flagstaff, AZ
Bikes: Marin Pt. Reyes, Gary Fisher HiFi Pro, Easy Racers Gold Rush recumbent, Cannondale F600
Posts: 976
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
6) low traffic being maybe 1 motor vehicle every 10 minutes
This one's going to be tough to satisfy on any road that's likely to be an enjoyable ride anywhere in the central Puget Sound area, unless you can ride at night or early on Sunday morning. Even sticking to mostly residential streets I can't cut out enough traffic to meet this standard during the day. Lots more rides open up if you can tolerate more like 1 car every 2 to 3 minutes.

For the 10 minutes per vehicle average, I'd try going over to rural areas of eastern Washington like the posters above have suggested- or the back roads of southwestern Washington, or rural Skagit and Whatcom counties. Or try the MUPS that they've mentioned.

One road like this that I really enjoyed riding last summer was the Rock Island Grade road, which starts off SR 28 about 8 miles SE of Wenatchee. It's a great workout climb with nice views at the top, and I think I was passed by maybe a dozen cars during my whole ride of 2 hours. It's unpaved, but doable on a road bike with wide tires.

Last edited by rnorris; 01-13-09 at 02:52 PM.
rnorris is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-13-09, 03:26 PM   #12
mattm
**** that
 
mattm's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: CALI
Bikes:
Posts: 13,733
Mentioned: 15 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 105 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by lakay View Post
Take Marine View drive on the weekend, from Marysville to Stanwood or you can start at Stanwood take pioneer to La Conner. Try Centennial Trail, 35 miles of paved blacktop and no traffic at all.
yes, i was gonna say the same! i actually did part of that route this weekend, it's quite nice. (although having 10 signs about drunk driving in 10 miles wasn't very reassuring..)

also, isn't there a side road next to I-90 (near Vantage) that can be ridden? it always looks way empty, and i've seen a few cyclists on it.

another spot is cougar mtn - climbing it takes about 20-25 minutes (for me), and there aren't many cars there.. maybe not what you're after tho.
__________________
cat 1.

blog
mattm is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-13-09, 03:26 PM   #13
mattm
**** that
 
mattm's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: CALI
Bikes:
Posts: 13,733
Mentioned: 15 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 105 Post(s)
also, Vashon island was quite scenic and had pretty low traffic (off the major roads).
__________________
cat 1.

blog
mattm is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-13-09, 04:09 PM   #14
BengeBoy 
Senior Member
 
BengeBoy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Seattle, Washington, USA
Bikes: 2014 Pivot Mach 5.7 MTB, 2009 Chris Boedeker custom, 1988 Tommasini Prestige, 2007 Bill Davidson custom; 1988 Specialized Stumpjumper
Posts: 6,941
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by mattm View Post
also, Vashon island was quite scenic and had pretty low traffic (off the major roads).
Good idea.

For that matter, you can ride the Chilly Hilly route (Bainbridge Island) any time of year - it's pretty nice on a Sunday morning in the summer.
BengeBoy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-13-09, 04:38 PM   #15
rnorris
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Flagstaff, AZ
Bikes: Marin Pt. Reyes, Gary Fisher HiFi Pro, Easy Racers Gold Rush recumbent, Cannondale F600
Posts: 976
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
also, isn't there a side road next to I-90 (near Vantage) that can be ridden? it always looks way empty, and i've seen a few cyclists on it.
Yes, that's SR10 and you can ride it all the way from Vantage to Cle Elum. I've ridden parts of it. It has very little traffic east of Ellensburg and can be a nice ride; as with all rides in the Kittitas Valley, though, it can be wickedly windy. Really pretty between E'burg and Cle Elum as it follows the Yakima River. There are some good climbs on it, especially westbound out of Vantage.
rnorris is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-13-09, 05:19 PM   #16
scozim 
Ellensburg, WA
 
scozim's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Ellensburg, WA
Bikes: See my signature
Posts: 2,786
Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by rnorris View Post
Yes, that's SR10 and you can ride it all the way from Vantage to Cle Elum. I've ridden parts of it. It has very little traffic east of Ellensburg and can be a nice ride; as with all rides in the Kittitas Valley, though, it can be wickedly windy. Really pretty between E'burg and Cle Elum as it follows the Yakima River. There are some good climbs on it, especially westbound out of Vantage.
Definitely head east - the tailwind is great in Kittitas County. Just have someone pick you up at the other end of the county. That bit of Hwy 10 between Cle Elum and Ellensburg is part of the course for the Manastash Metric Century in October. East of Ellensburg there's a fair amount of traffic until you get about 10 miles out.
__________________
1984 Gitane Sprint; 1984 Gitane Tour de France;1982 Trek 610; 1980's Univega Supra Sport (fixie); 1975 Teledyne Titan; 1968 Peugeot PL8; ;1982 Nishiki Marina 12; 1972 Peugeot PX-10; 1987 Trek 800 Antelope (touring/commuting set up); 1981 Trek 510; 1993 Trek 950 mtb; 1996 Klein Pulse II mtb; 1997 Klein Pulse Comp mtb; 1989 Peugeot Limestone hybrid (for touring); 1989 Spectrum Titanium
scozim is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-13-09, 05:46 PM   #17
mattm
**** that
 
mattm's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: CALI
Bikes:
Posts: 13,733
Mentioned: 15 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 105 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by rnorris View Post
Yes, that's SR10 and you can ride it all the way from Vantage to Cle Elum. I've ridden parts of it. It has very little traffic east of Ellensburg and can be a nice ride; as with all rides in the Kittitas Valley, though, it can be wickedly windy. Really pretty between E'burg and Cle Elum as it follows the Yakima River. There are some good climbs on it, especially westbound out of Vantage.
thx for the info!

also, this summer SIR did a ride up to Windy Ridge (as did the Cascade High Pass Challenge), and most of that was closed to autos due to roads falling apart. not sure how long it'll be like that, but we didn't see cars for hours!!
__________________
cat 1.

blog
mattm is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-14-09, 11:43 AM   #18
Mt_Top
Richly Poor!
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: NW USA
Bikes: ICE
Posts: 26
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Thank you all for the input. I never would have thought of Mercer Island for low traffic riding.

Any more ideas for Eastern WA? Thanks again....
Mt_Top is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-14-09, 12:33 PM   #19
gregstandt
Senior Member
 
gregstandt's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Eastern Washington
Bikes:
Posts: 167
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
The Centennial Trail has about 35 miles in Washington of paved trail, some road sharing, and into Idaho for another 20+ miles also with some sharing.
I know you said Washington but a few miles into Idaho will get you the Trail of the Coeur d' Alenes a 72 mile paved railbed between Plummer and Mullan, with many trailheads inbetween.
gregstandt is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-14-09, 12:38 PM   #20
BengeBoy 
Senior Member
 
BengeBoy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Seattle, Washington, USA
Bikes: 2014 Pivot Mach 5.7 MTB, 2009 Chris Boedeker custom, 1988 Tommasini Prestige, 2007 Bill Davidson custom; 1988 Specialized Stumpjumper
Posts: 6,941
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mt_Top View Post
Thank you all for the input. I never would have thought of Mercer Island for low traffic riding..
In the summer, the city of Seattle closes the traffic along Lake Washington Drive (from I90 down to Seward Park) on several Sundays. That means you can do the entire lap around the Southern end of Lake Washington with little to no car traffic:

- the east side of Lake Washington is mostly bike lanes
- a bit of traffic as you wind through Renton and get around the airport (though not much traffic on a Sunday morning)
- you have a bike lane along Rainier avenue at the south end of lake
- then you come up the west side of Lake Washington on a car-free Sunday, no traffic.

If you throw in a loop around Mercer Island plus a loop around Seward Park, you've got somewhere around 35 miles of light- to no-traffic riding.
BengeBoy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-14-09, 03:25 PM   #21
rnorris
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Flagstaff, AZ
Bikes: Marin Pt. Reyes, Gary Fisher HiFi Pro, Easy Racers Gold Rush recumbent, Cannondale F600
Posts: 976
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Any more ideas for Eastern WA? Thanks again....
These roads are snowed in right now, but....

If your bike can handle gravel roads and you like a good climb, try the roads in the canyons on the south flank of Table Mountain out of Kittitas. The Colockum Pass road is good, but rough; I usually ride the roads up Coleman Canyon or Cooke Canyon. These do get some traffic on weekends, particularly during hunting season, but rarely more than a car every few minutes. I particularly choose these when the banshee west winds are screaming in the valley; you often then get tailwinds for these climbs, and the complex topography tends to calm them quite a bit. Another option is USFS road 35; it's paved for the first few miles and has superb views of the valley, but it's a very grueling climb and gets lots of traffic in the summer. Sometime when I'm in a masochistic mood I want to ride it up to Lion Rock; it would be something like a 4000' elevation gain.

Last edited by rnorris; 01-14-09 at 03:37 PM.
rnorris is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-15-09, 12:16 AM   #22
Mtn Mike
Super Biker
 
Mtn Mike's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: Spokane WA
Bikes: 2008 Lapierre X-Lite, 2006 Serotta Coeur d’Acier, 2005 Independent Fabrication Steel Delux, 2003 Surly 1x1, 2003 Surly Cross Check, 1986 Schwin Worldsport SS commuter, 1980's Mongoose Supergoose
Posts: 1,183
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mt_Top View Post
Thank you all for the input. I never would have thought of Mercer Island for low traffic riding.

Any more ideas for Eastern WA? Thanks again....
Really there are too many rides to even describe in eastern washington. Check out our clubs website and forums for some ride maps, but these are only a small sample. What distance do you consider an ideal ride?

http://www.spokanerocketvelo.com/favoriteridemaps
Mtn Mike is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-15-09, 07:18 PM   #23
Mt_Top
Richly Poor!
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: NW USA
Bikes: ICE
Posts: 26
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Thanks everyone.

Mtn Mike - Good info on the web site there, having the road names is a big plus. Rides of 30 to 50 miles would work well. A few hours of riding time but not enough to over do it!

rnorris - Those rides sound intriguing also.
Mt_Top is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-17-09, 11:33 PM   #24
challaday
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Just this side of insanity.
Bikes: Too many
Posts: 574
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Fort Lewis has some nice roads, and little to no traffic. You can create a bunch of different routes that are in the 20-40 mile range.

You need picture ID to get through the gates.
challaday is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-18-09, 02:05 AM   #25
moleman76
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: western Washington
Bikes: Stella
Posts: 604
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Put some 35mm wide (70-75 psi) tires on and ride the South (side) Skagit road from Hwy 9, just south of Burlington, to Concrete (and back). Wide, soft tires recommended due to the large gravel they used for the chipseal repaving.

Rockport to Darrington, or Concrete-across Skagit river-to Darrington.

That 10-minute interval between cars is a tough one.
moleman76 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off



All times are GMT -6. The time now is 01:15 AM.