Big-Big loop (384 miles) single day offroad in PNW

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Day Trippin'' started by tomasv, Aug 13, 2019.

  1. tomasv

    tomasv Check the Czech!

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2006
    Oddometer:
    1,060
    Location:
    Seattle area
    Where: WA state
    What: 384 miles (624km) day ride, about half on dirt, some challenging sections
    Time: 14.5 hours with 30 minutes lunch break and 2x 15 minutes snack / gas breaks
    Bike: Husqvarna 701 with RADE/GARAGE fairing and tank (impossible to do without it), the wind protection and comfort allow for these long trips.)

    How:

    After the last 2 Sunday rides consisting of gnarly 4x4 tracks, where I would constantly keep telling myself don't fall or you will die because there is no other idiot in the world who would ride something like this (why the 4x4 jeeps make it look so easy going slowly up a hill that I need dozen times trying to make it to the top?), walked the biked down some of the downhill sections and dropped it more times that I want to remember, I was in for something else...

    What the doctor prescribed was fast sections of open roads, where I could feel like I am on a rally, and forget all the bullshit from the office and life...

    The section of WABDR between HWY 410 and Sugarloaf Lookout offers exactly that, so let's go.

    In the AM I got up and the radar was showing heavy thunderstorms along my way but quickly moving away. So slower starts, breakfast at home leaving around 9 AM. Coming up on NF-70 there was a lot of water and fog, almost felt like April, not August. I was cold and thinking what the Naches trail will look like.

    Line of about a dozen jeeps at the entrance - I wave and go in. Fortunately had to only pass 2 of them in the deep ruts. But man, some of the puddles were knee deep, the last 2 days of storms did change the easy sections to moderate and the moderate section after Naches pass to NF70 was now hard - had to walk the bike down one steep hill that I did not feel comfortable with the wet roots and mud... So much for fast double track...

    Gas at WJ, quick coffee and energy bar, 15 minutes later up NF1701. The closed sign is still there but I verified with the ranger the fire is fully contained. As I was already east, weather got soooo much better and I converted the jacket to a west and had smiles on my face since it was exactly as I had imagined. I had the engine light come on, which made me worried for a bit (low oil, WTF?) but it seemed to be related to mud in the side stand and after few stops, it went away...

    So fast double track to Weenas, up Umtanum ridge, radio towers and down to Ellensburg. Subway for lunch and 30 minutes later time to go. Usually, that is where a day trip turns around and I go home, but I was determined to keep riding since I was so eager to forget and was enjoying myself. So up to Table Mt, Beehive, via the washout to Cashmere. Table Mt. was super cold - I almost started to shiver, the record shows 16 degrees C drop up there. Gas and Gatorade with another power bar in Cashmere. It is 5:30 PM but I don't want to ride HWY 2 home...

    I looked at the maps before going and the best option was to continue on WABDR to French Corrals and keep going on the ridge. So I went, up Nanahum Canyon Rd, Entiat Mt to Sugarloaf. The clouds I have seen sitting over the Cascades made me worried what going home will look like but to hell with it. It is about 7PM, beautiful sunset and I get to ride the most favorite part of the day - the "Golden hours". A few pictures along the way and I drop down to Fish lake. It is clear I am not going to make it back to the pavement in daylight and my high beam does not work - adventure ahead!

    Continue around Lake Wenatchee on NF6700 to Stevens pass. About 15 miles from there it is dark and it starts to rain. Convert the vest back to a full jacket, put all layers I got and let's hope it will not be that bad. Well, it was worst. I can't see shit, going 10 MPH on the dirt road, at the end I took the goggles off. Not much better but at least I can see more into distance. Pitch dark in the woods at 9:30 PM. Great - oh how I miss the R/G LED high beam. Why did I not fix the wires before going?

    I made it to Steven's pass and it is pooring. I can't see much so I am trying to stay behind a car, but they all are going too fast for me + their spray going into the helmet is a mix of water and sand. At least I don't have to stop for a dinner, got full teeth. Made it home safely around 11:30PM ....

    Relive ride recording: https://www.relive.cc/view/r10007358107

    All pictures: http://www.husky701.com/bwg_gallery/big-big-loop/

    BTW I just got email RADE/GARAGE has $168 discount on all their fairing !!!

    And few picture teasers here:

    I should bring snorkel and fins in August!!
    [​IMG]

    Eastside never disappoints - sun is out!
    [​IMG]

    I already forgot all my troubles - pure enjoyment out here
    [​IMG]

    Exactly what the doctor prescribed - fast, open roads:
    [​IMG]

    Lovely scenary:
    [​IMG]

    The clouds make me worry - I got 80 miles to get through that home:
    [​IMG]
    #1
  2. Dorian

    Dorian huge carbon footprint

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2004
    Oddometer:
    896
    Location:
    WA State
    Nice work thanks for the report and pics! Glad it went well. I'm whipped after a 400mi street ride on my 12GS :bore
    #2
  3. Car Sun Key

    Car Sun Key Pick a direction and go

    Joined:
    May 17, 2009
    Oddometer:
    423
    Location:
    Warshington
    Great photos,thats a full day for sure! Care to share gpx?
    #3
  4. tomasv

    tomasv Check the Czech!

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2006
    Oddometer:
    1,060
    Location:
    Seattle area
    Sure thing, here it is

    Attached Files:

    #4
    MtRainier and Car Sun Key like this.
  5. Dorian

    Dorian huge carbon footprint

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2004
    Oddometer:
    896
    Location:
    WA State
    Tomas- your Easton to Tacoma Pass track; you cross Cabin Creek. How was the crossing (for a 1200GSA)? I see your track stops. Did you turn around?

    Cheers, Dorian
    #5
  6. Car Sun Key

    Car Sun Key Pick a direction and go

    Joined:
    May 17, 2009
    Oddometer:
    423
    Location:
    Warshington
    If you're comfortable with the mild tank traps and very small section the trail gets thin (right before the creek crossing) then the creek crossing itself shouldnt be an issue this time of year.
    #6
  7. tomasv

    tomasv Check the Czech!

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2006
    Oddometer:
    1,060
    Location:
    Seattle area
    #7
  8. sati8d

    sati8d REALLY?? Supporter

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2011
    Oddometer:
    1,196
    Location:
    New Bern, NC
    Outstanding Ride Report!
    #8