Published: August 6th 2012August 6th 2012
It seems that I need to make an apology to Mr Ryan Giggs in last weeks blog, as I was mistaken as to his extra marital activitys, in that he did not sleep with his team mate’s wife, that was Mr John Terry. Mr Giggs slept with his brother’s wife. Glad I cleared that up, I would not like to slander anyone.
Well the summer is definitely back with us in a big way, the temperature is up in the high 80s, but there is a little humidity with it. We took the river road west and the smaller winding roads of Idaho’s panhandle. Here its farming that dominates the countryside, and generally the crop is spuds, and this must be something that the Idahoans take very seriously because unlike some other states that opt for more dramatic mission statements on their licence plates, such as Montana’s “Big sky State”, Alaska’s “The Last Frontier”, or Minnesota’s “Land of 10,000 Lakes,” the powers to be in Idaho have decided on “Famous Potatoes” eh?, this state is very beautiful and in our opinion deserves a little better. We entered Washington State but as we have already been to this
one it does not count again, the scenery stayed much the same, very pretty but with no potatoes. We got the last room in a motel in the small town of Kettle Falls, apparently there was a fishing contest on at the local lake, well when I say lake it must have been the size of Hampshire, given the size of the out board motors on the boats, 300hp on a 20 foot boat come on I know they say there’s no substitute for horse power here, but do they use rods or just run the fish down. Day 119……29/07/2012
Still a little ahead of time so we will stay put another day to rest and relax. We checked out the organic farm shop opposite to see what GM free goodies where on offer, but there was nothing much to get the taste buds jumping, apart from a little tofu risotto number but that needed an oven to make it anywhere near edible. So its burger and chips at the local diner tonight then. “Is there anything to do here” we asked he lady at the motel reception, “you’re in luck “ she said, “there will be the
grand weigh in of the fish caught today down by the lake at three this afternoon, or an eleven mile walk to the dam and back” she seemed genuinely excited to at least be able to offer a choice this time, but a walk in 90 plus temperatures was just not tempting enough. Day 120……30/07/2012
Fully refreshed but feeling just a little guilty for doing absolutely nothing yesterday, we set off West again for the town of Omak, more great scenery, but in this part of Washington State it was returning to more of a high desert type of landscape, with the tall pine trees being replaced by sage and low scrub. The heat was on the increase as well, and by lunchtime it was well over ninety degrees. We arrived in the town of Omak mid afternoon by which time we were roasting, so we got settled into the hotel room very quickly and had the air con on full blast. As the late afternoon sun cooled just enough we took a walk to the nearby Dairy Queen, one of our more favoured corporate fast food outlets, but only for their ice cream. This came
in a myriad of flavours and in sizes to suit everyone, from small which would do for two people, up to large that would feed most of Wyoming. Suitably sustained with ice cream we made our way to the local Walmart, which always gives us a laugh, now wearing no clothes is not an option in the State of Washington, but as with most Walmart’s what they do wear is most entertaining.
A thing that I had wondered about was where you would go to buy ammunition for the hundreds of millions of guns that are here in the US, well one place is Walmart, I’ll take some banana’s, eggs, cereal, oh and two boxes of .44s, at least the cabinet is locked to stop the kids playing with them. Day 121……31/07/2012
Today we will make the final short push back to Bellingham on the Washington coast, this will see us make the complete loop back to where we started our Alaskan adventure. Although this will not be until we cross the magnificent Northern Cascade Mountains. Our first stop was in the old mining town of Winthrop, a definite tourist trap that attracts its
fair share at this time of the year. From there we made our way through the winding foothills and then began the climb up into the Cascade Mountains, once again I have run out of words to describe, and also not repeat myself when it comes to just what we saw. This range of mountains are definitely on the map but thankfully the Northern Cascade Highway is not as well known as you would think, which means that you are not blighted by hundreds of RVs and massive camping trailers. The road is usually closed from November until March because of snow, but today it was well and truly open in all its glory.
We arrived at the storage facility where Lynne’s trike has been for the last three weeks around mid afternoon, the beast started first time and we were off again in our own little convoy. We had booked the nights stop at the same motel in Bellingham that we had used before leaving for Alaska, so with the ten mile journey to it complete we had completed the 3700 mile loop of the Alaskan section of our adventure Day 122……01/08/2012
Exactly one hundred miles
would see us in Seattle this morning, at the pre-booked hotel near
to the airport where we will wait for the arrival of our friends from back home, Andy and Lyn. Christine needed an oil change, so that was quickly sorted in the car park outside the I 90 motorsports in Seattle, thanks to them for taking my old oil. The rest of the day we spent rearranging the kit back onto the two bikes after it all having been crammed onto mine. That evening we walked the mile or so to the nearby restaurants, well I suppose come to think of it not that near really, where we dined on Pot roast and BBQ chicken at the local Denny’s Day 123……02/08/2012
There is not a lot to say today really, we lazed around a bit took a ride into Seattle, and then waited until that evening when our friends flight came in.
OK our friends flight arrived bang on time and we were there waiting in their hotel the Holiday Inn to greet them, and before you think it no of course we could not afford to stay there. With the greetings made we took a walk
out to get some food, which to us was our evening meal, but to Andy and Lyn was a meal at 3am in the morning British time. Day 124……03/08/2012
The first order of the day was to collect the Harley Davidson rental from the local Eagle riders outlet in Seattle, this went without a hitch and we were soon back at the hotel loading the limited kit that two people and one motorcycle are afforded. Within a very short time we were off and it was straight in at the deep end for Andy with the morning Seattle traffic, which was to say the least very busy. The route for our first day would take us north on interstate 5 for fifty miles, and then what for Lynne and I would be the start of our long journey east, and our final farewell to the west coast. For Andy and Lyn it was just the start of what we all hoped would be a memorable two weeks exploring this beautiful part of the American North West. So it was very fitting that we made the crossing back over the Northern Cascade Mountains on their first
day, it is a ride that we made two days ago from East to West, and now we were lucky enough to see it from the other direction. A fantastic 200 mile ride ended at a really nice hotel deep in the Washington woods, just about as perfect as any biking day could be, and then finished off with a great meal on the veranda watching the humming birds. I love this country.
There are more photos below