I never seem to sleep well in motels, I think its the soft beds – I’m used to futons. What with the fitful sleep I woke early and vowing not to repeat the sins of the past was out by 8:30. No US Open today, but did catch some NPR, which I have to say is one thing I miss on these trips. I headed back to the old town area to try one of the good looking indie coffee shops but alas they were all closed. So I rode down to the waterfront for a scenic route back to the 20 and the strip malls. In which I found a Starbucks. I got a vente drip (black) and ate an apple and my other muffin. I didn’t linger and soon headed out and up to swing by my old house before I left town. Still there, looking as good as ever. My parents had built thus house but I also found it a bit ostentatious. But still looking good. I took some back roads back to the highway then actually backtracked a bit to take scenic heights road. Good thing too as there was roadwork on the 20 eliminating the shoulder on the steep climb out of town.
Scenic Heights road is not misnamed, it us both scenic and hilly. I tend to take the roads on the western edge if the island so this was some good variety but damn if there weren’t some killer hills. Mostly rollers though and the views of the various coves and inlets us worth it. The road dead ends and you take the hwy for a mile or so then I turned onto Madrona drive. This again us a coast hugging road that wends its way to Coupeville. It passes the Captain Whidbey Inn, where I spent nine months before college as a dish dogger/prep cook. I always wanted to hit the bar there but, well 10:30 is a bit early even for me. Continuing on the road passes Penn Cove where the famous mussels are raised. Madrona trees line this route and while it is up and down its not bad at all hill wise. I passed another tourer not too far from Penn Cove, which is nice to see. Shortly I made it to Coupeville a cute little town that has managed to leverage its former sea industry into a nice tourist town. I just ride through- I wanted to get to the ferry.
I took back roads to the ferry which saved some miles and time on the highway. Also while it had a but of a hill was then all downhill to the ferry. There was quite the backup of cars but of course I just rode down to the terminal. I bought my ticket, which you can do from a vending machine now (nice!). My timing was good, it was 11:45 abs the ferry was due at noon. It arrived I boarded followed by the cars and them we were off. I put away my skivvies which had been drying on my racks and then changed into my pants. A nice crossing, takes about a half hour and it was a nice day of clouds with hints of blue. Arriving in Port Townsend we disembark and I prep my bicycle for travel. But first lunch.
Many a cyclist talks of Waterfront Pizza and the line out the door was definitely a good sign. I locked up as I planned to spend a bit of time here then got in line. It had cleared to just one person when I did so not much wait. Turned out a veggie was just coming out of the oven do I got basically a fresh pizza. They do a deal there where they make a pizza for slices with multiple styles on one pie. So I got three slices of three different veg combos. I have to say IMO Waterfront Pizza is overrated- a decent crust but not a great sauce and too much of it at that. Still not bad and three slices turned out to be way too much food. I walked around town a bit watching done folk music in the park and checking out the shops. It was thronged with people so I really just didn’t want to linger. So I went to Elevated Ice Cream and bought a local bicycle map and an espresso cone. The cone was good but it was a damn good thing I bought the cycling map, finding the trail out of town would not have happened without it.
But find it I did and I’m glad it skipped the big hill out of town.
The trail starts as gravel and runs along the water but then turns into the woods and goes uphill a bit. Toward the end the trail is paved and that is a nice section. Maybe four miles total and then it was all highways. My rear tire had the ol’ “slow leak” and knowing that there was big climbs and descents ahead I pulled off and changed it. Two tire changes in two days and down to one spare tube. Yikes. The highway hugs the coastline that is around this bay, so you go south and later north. The road out of Port Townsend had some good rollers but then this just endless climb. Not sure how long a mile or more I’d hazard, with some good steep sections. And then as it climbs steeper and curves the shoulder goes away. As if we need further proof that there is no god. After this its a two mike descent down to where it joins 101. So then of course you have to climb up the other side.
Climb it did but it wasn’t as bad grade wise but some long hills. Lots of traffic as well, fast and continuous. Huge shoulder so I just stayed to the right and rode. Not much to say snout this stretch beyond that, just rolling hills and traffic. Some good sights now and again and the dun would come and go. I stopped at the Lavender Shop for a chai and got my bottles filled. While there I did a Google search and found Sequim State Park which was just outside of Sequim and a perfect location to stop and that’s what I did.
I arrived at the campground around 5:30 got one of two remaining hiker/biker sites (US$12.00) and headed in. There was another tourist set up so I moved to the far end and unloaded my gear. I set up the tent, the first time for the Eureka Spitfire which us more complicated then my Quarter Dome but still pretty straightforward. A nice tent again Rivendell doesn’t steer me wrong. I busted out my alcohol stove and got water boiling and made the only food I had- oatmeal. I’d expected a store here I’d nearby but alas there was not. So so made do, I’ll be sure to carry some noodles from here on out. I made tea as well and capped I’d with a granola bar. I then replenished my water cleaned up then set out to see the camp.
Not really a lot here one of those campgrounds more for staying at while you do other things. Still down at the water you could see a stunning sunset with the clouds like a garish abstract reflected on the watter. I enjoyed a dram of Irish Whiskey as I perambulated around the camp- a perfect cap to end a nice day.
Miles ridden: 51