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Old 10-16-2011, 10:48 PM   #1
slugsmasher OP
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Joined: May 2011
Location: Whidbey Island, WA
Oddometer: 72
Whidbey to Mt Loop Highway, dirt noob day trip

The weather is holding out here in the PNW amazingly well for this time of year. Another excellent weekend to enjoy out doors. I still can't ride my bicycle due to other injury but the motorcycle is good to go. So took off Saturday for a great ride out and about my local area for a couple hundred miles of fun. Here is the general route:



Right away on the run to Conway, the views started coming. Mt Baker across the Skagit Flats. I blast by here a lot but rarely stop and look around, it is a nice region that is inundated by tourists during the Tulip festival in April. Nobody out this time of year.



Did the Lake Cavanagh to Deer Creek road to Oso option first. I am a total noob on dirt and gravel so I thought this would be a good option to work on some skills. Little sketchy on the gravel at first but got used to it fairly quickly. Just stay on the throttle and don't be stupid with the front brake is what I learned. Got a couple good photos of Whitehorse and Three Fingers mountains from the roadside. Nice views up there.



Stopped in Darrington and was going to take the north side of the Sauk River road but it was closed. Ended up doing the standard route to Barlow Pass with about 15 miles of dirt road which was good practice. Stopped for a few photos along the way.













The Mt Loop Highway follows the contours of the Sauk River to Barlow Pass. Barlow Pass is where the trailhead to Monte Cristo is at. Monte Cristo is an old ore mining town that had a railroad running to it and well worth the 4 mile hike to get to the townsite. Interesting history in this area.

The road conditions were pretty good and not much loose stuff or big potholes. Just rode it out and enjoyed the surroundings.











Rode out through to Arlington and north on the always fun Hwy 9 to Mt. Vernon and home. Great ride and made it home in time to cook some steaks on the BBQ with the ol' lady. I love this place this time of year when the weather is good, no tourists and everything is yours to take in.
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Old 02-03-2012, 01:52 PM   #2
Gramp-Z
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Joined: May 2009
Location: Maple Valley , WA , USA
Oddometer: 766
Slugmasher ; looks like a nice ride . I remember getting used to my WeeStrom in gravel , sure didn't take long . I may have to run up that way when it stays warm for a little bit . Some very nice pictures you have there . Seems like 8 out of 10 times I go out , the sun hides away behind clouds . Up in the woods it makes for bad pictures on overcast days . My short rides are usually up toward Green Water or the Carbon River . Anything to stay out of traffic and 6 lane roads .
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