An Olympic Bike Tour I have good friends in Bellingham, WA and Newberg, OR. These seemed like good endpoints to a bike tour. In late August, 2011, I flew up to Bellingham, WA and spent 4 days sightseeing and hanging out with Larry and Melissa. Then, I rode off south toward Newberg, OR and Dennis and Charlene for another long weekend of wine tasting, tennis watching, and more sightseeing.

The Adventure Cycling Association has two routes that go north - south in Washington State. The Pacific Coast route, which starts in Vancouver, BC, goes through Bellingham, WA, through the San Juan Islands, and then south along Interstate 5. The Washington Parks route is a loop whose western half goes around the Olympic Peninsula.

After some research, I decided not to take either of these routes. Instead, I opted to ride on Hwy 101 along the Hood Canal down the east side of the Olympic Peninsula. I joined the Pacific Coast route near Shelton, WA but only followed it to Elma, a day's ride west. The ACA route heads inland at Elma and follows I5 south.

I decided to ride out to and south along the coast. But, instead of dealing with the long bridge over the Columbia River at Astoria, I decided to cross the river at Cathlamet, the next place east where that is possible. Thus, instead of riding out to the coast on 101 and then south, I took Hwy 4 south to Cathlamet.

I originally planned to ride east from Westport (the Oregon side of the ferry from Cathlamet, WA) but didn't as the place I had planned to stay was closed due to an electricity outage. Instead, I rode a busy Hwy 30 to Astoria and rejoined the ACA route there. I followed the ACA route all the way south to Tillimook, where I headed inland on Hwy 6 and on to Newberg.

I kept the details of all my plans for this tour on the Tour Planning section of this website.

I also used Track My Tour on my iPhone to track waypoints of my tour. You can see the resulting map on that site.

       
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Words and Images Copyright © 2011 by Ray Swartz
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