Monday 08.22.112: Lake Chelan State Park to Blu-Shastin RV Park and Campground.
I did a lot of riding today and it was rather a mixed bag. The route from Lake Chelan State Park immediately climbed for a mile and a half but after that it descended into this truly excellent forested valley. It was cool in there and it wad good to be riding in trees again.
Of course it didn’t last and I was back in the scrub again, still in a valley it just now had towering walls of dry grassland. I should say that the seemingly relentless shades of brown and tan shrubbery is not at all boring. The eye is captivated by the subtle complexity of the patterns formed by the variance in color, shadows and the things that stand out. There are also many interesting sounds: grasshoppers, crickets and thus rattling insect, brooks, streams and rivers, wind in the grass and shrubs, sprinklers, windmills and the rattling of metal and on and on. It is a different beauty from Western Washington but it is definitely captivating.
After a twisty descent from the canyons my route turned onto 97 Alt and into a headwind. There would be headwinds of varying strengths all day today. There was clouds again today which
again brought humidity but it definitely kept the heat down. Anyway it was slogging along on 97 until Wenatchee where I felt I needed a beer. So I fired up the Maps App and found two places. Alas I chose to go to the one that no longer exists. So I backtracked, including a section on a nice trail through a park and arrived at the Columbia Valley Brewey.
Nice place, there were only a couple of us there and the bartender, of Irish extraction was trying to deal with his car having been hit in the parking lot by an out if town couple. They had given him some podunk Michigan insurance info and he was having a hell of a time dealing with the the voicemail system. a regular helped him out by googling the area code for the insurance accident line as they place was so podunk they didn’t feel they’d need to include that info. Good times and seemed like a good bunch. I enjoyed the beer too.
I now had a bit of a conundrum: there was camping where I was in Wenatchee or about 30 miles away. It was early and I’d only ridden 30-40 miles so I went for the distance. This was a slog, back in the headwind on US 2 for a bit which was busy and not much fun. The clouds were thick now and there was actually a few drops of rain (which I relished). Eventually it was off the freeway at the small town of Cashmere (home of Aplets and Cotlets). The route took hilly backroads for a while peaking at Deadman’s Hill. This was one of the steepest climbs to date if not too long. I guess you’d expect no less from a place called Deadman’s hill. From there the road dive-bombed back into the valley and it was back on the 97 toward Blewet Pass.
This bit was tough – I was definitely burnt out, the headwind had become strong with occasional big gusts and it was uphill (mostly gently) the whole way as it is the start of a pass. It was otherwise nice, on a river and there is now greenery again that isn’t the direct result of watering. Anyway I was happy to reach this RV place I’m staying at even if it is an RV place. I’m camped right on the river and it’s soothing white noise is putting me to sleep..
Miles ridden today: 68.8
Miles ridden to-date: 501