Left early and wound my way through some lovely farmland on the 99 that parallel's the I-5.
It was a pretty short day, not too hot....and let's talk about that for a minute. It's it always about the gear. True, when adventure riders get together, the conversation seems to always start with tires but I'd say for me, choosing the right gear is the hardest part. Since I was going to Alaska...and AKDuc warned me incessantly about the rain and cold, it was a pretty clear choice to wear my BMW winter gear lined with Gore-Tex. I wasn't going to get caught in terrible, wet, cold weather again. In general, my choice proved to be the right one but there were some days that I was in my own personal Gore-Tex sauna hell.
Came into one small town and obeyed the speed signs...good thing too, patrol car was hiding behind this big equipment.
Arrived in Portland and visited with a classmate Brooke, from USF a decade earlier. We figured out her son was pretty excited about being on my bike...this is the only photo out of 6 that he paid attention to us.
My comfy bed for the night.
My dinner....blackened snapper and veggies. It felt good to cook. I, for one, can only tolerate so much restaurant food.
Had a great night of sleep and another short day of riding ahead of me....since I got some help from hvman that the 25 North was still closed.
He met me at a gas station off of the I-5 and helped me plan my route for that day....I-5 N> 12 East > 7 North > 706 East
But not before some jet fuel.
Off the 706 I found a special place....Dan Klennert workshop
I met this nice lady (his wife) and heard their life story of travelling the world finally to settle right back in WA where they were from, in the shadow of the Mt Rainier.
Even the chairs were cool!
And this is to help you see the scale of these things.
And this one for my boyfriend who loves dogs
Shortly after that I arrived at the park entrance...where I went 35 mph as I was supposed to do with some idiot pushing me from behind constantly.
(this photo was taken mere seconds before the area before was swarmed by Asian tourists) See me taking the photo in my side mirror?
The clouds parted and the angels started to sing and I saw Mt Rainier.
Pulled into Paradise and decided to have lunch at the fancy restaurant.
After I choked on the prices, I opted for some wings. Boy were they terrible.
When I came back I struck up a conversation with a group of 4 riders travelling together. I asked them where they were headed and when they said "Carson"....I thought, carson, carson...I know that. Oh! That's at the end of the 25. "Hey guys, the 25 is closed."
Turns out later when I ran into Aaron on the ferry to Victoria that the gang decided I didn't know what I was talking about and headed that way anyway, only to turn back. Now what Aaron said later when we rode Victoria together was that he said to the group that I had a GPS, a map, a spot tracker and a plan....if I didn't know whether or not a road was closed he'd eat his helmet. Well that's the story anyway.
So I started heading East to catch the 410 N and when I found these ladies, I asked, how far to the next gas station. (I had plenty of fuel, just wanted to know) and this nice lady insisted I take some of her gas from her can.
Well I made it to Seattle right around rush hour, fortunately for me I was going against the flow (into downtown). I arrived at my friend's place near the water in a swanky condo on the 16th floor. My room.
And took the knots out in the Jacuzzi.
The view from my room.
My boyfriend is a Seahawks fan so I went to their store and got this beanie and posed in front of the needle.
I had a day to run around and stock up on things I forgot and since the door to the room was literally falling off the hinges, and being the good "son" that I am to a father that was an electrician and fixed everything around the house himself, I fixed it.
That door is never coming down. Used thicker, longer wood screws and epoxy glued the hinges on to the door and the frame. Never coming off.
Had a great time with friends
Then went for very expensive steak with a view.
What was tricky about this part of my trip was that it was the last point of contact with people I knew. The next morning the real adventure would start. Knowing I had an invitation to stay with Yatman in Victoria was a great comfort to me but getting up that morning to catch the bainbridge ferry (one of many to come) was unnerving.