Wednesday, February 02, 2011

The Simple Pleasure of a Bike Ride

"Nothing compares to the simple pleasure of a bike ride." ~ John F. Kennedy

Fans of epic ride reports will do well to skip this post, for there is no drama here. No adversity was overcome to bring you these words, no weather endured unless you count enduring a sunny day in February some sort of hardship. There were no close calls with cars and all canine encounters were most cordial. My machine fell victim to no mechanical maladies and I encountered no obvious injustice to make me righteously rage against the world.

I ride my bicycle and since the day is sunny and my immediate obligations are slight, I ride the long way to the city. The direct route uses the floating bridge and the clever tunnel but the long route follows the shores of lakes and rivers. What was once a native path became the rail line and now that the age of steam is mostly a rusting memory, this route is mostly trails once again.

The sky and the lake are blue, the air is crisp and my clothing is warm enough for the day.

Many of the homes along the trail have privacy fences and one home owner along the route makes and sells pictures for the fences. I always think this one would look more at home in a coffee shop.

There are hundreds of geese at Marymoor Park.

Marymoor Park is also home to a velodrome.

Much of Marymoor park is the old Willowmoor Farm site. The windmill is over one hundred years old.

I have a huge collection of "my bike next to things" pictures. Here's my bike next to the "naked woman sitting on nothing" statue.

It is still early in the ride, but I suspect this will be the oddest photograph of the day.

There is a bunch of salmon-themed art along the trail. This is the Salmon-Moon sculpture in Woodinville.

I pause to browse and grab some lunch at Third Place Books in Lake Forest Park and then continue on my way.

The Burke-Gilman Trail is in the Rail Trail Hall of Fame. On sunny days in the summer, it's packed with people. On a sunny day in February, it's not as crowded.

Despite the "it rains all the time" reputation, blue sky days are amazing in Seattle. This is Lake Washington as viewed from Matthews Beach Park.

Yet another picture of my bike next to public art. This is the UW Husky.

One of my favorite bits of home-brew public art.

Yet another view of Lake Washington, looking east towards the Cascades.

The switch-backed road leads back down to the water.

The boats at Leschi with Mount Rainier in the distance.

My favorite road sign on Lake Washington Boulevard.

Looking back at the Seattle skyline from Seward Park.

Mount Rainier as seen from the southern edge of Seward Park

I roll onward to Renton, the land of airplanes. These are some of the little ones.

The Cedar River Trail loops back towards home.

I try to be courteous on the roads and trails, but I suspect I am not the only one who may occasionally exceed this limit. I'd much rather see a sign that says "Don't ride like a jerk!"

The sun is getting low as I turn off the trail. The Cedar Grove Road leads to the Issaquah-Hobart Road which leads me home.

Just a day in the sun, on a bike. A simple day to remember the simple pleasure of a bike ride.

Keep 'em rolling,

Kent "Mountain Turtle" Peterson
Issaquah WA USA


Jesse said...

Excellent Kent! Any ride report is fun to read when you're laid up sick...especially when they feature a piece of bike art 4 blocks from home! (I live in Montlake, near the homemade hanging bike dude)

Thanks for brightening my day -


Anonymous said...

The Wolf inside me really enjoyed the photos. Brought back memories of running and hunting. Thanks!

Dan O said...

Great report and pictures.

I'll occasionally take a vacation day during the week - family locked into their routines - and escape on a similar ride.

Always fun to do. No pressure, no speed required, just ride and look around.

Drive Less Live More said...

Hi Kent! What a beautiful day! I'm jealous. How far (in terms of mileage) did you go? I am wanting to increase my mileage. Thank you for sharing your ride with us.

Bob said...

What a fun ride! Thanks for sharing, Kent. Do you know how far it is in miles? Measured in pleasure it looks just about right.


Kent Peterson said...

I don't have a computer on my Dahon, but I ran the route through Google Maps. Including the bits of wandering in Marymoor & Seward Park, it looks like it was just over 72 miles. Or, as the salmon would say, about 116 kilometers.

Bob said...

The salmon have converted to metric? I hadn't heard that, but I guess I'm kind of out of the loop.

Anonymous said...

King salmon continue to use imperial measures.

Most of the metric fanatics are chum.

Anonymous said...

Wow... i like bike trip photos... this city is very beautifull... see you

roan said...

Hey, I took that day(2/2/11) off work too. But Himalayian BB called...DANG !
Salmom gone metric...figures don't lie...28 inches/71cm...bigger is better.

Bob said...

Himalayan Basketball is great but you can only get it on cable.

Unknown said...

You should post the google map trail or post the trail somehow, would love to know which way you went from Issaquah.

Kent Peterson said...


No need for a Google Map, it's really simple. The trail out of Issaquah starts by the caboose on Gilman Blvd. Follow that north up alongside Lake Sammamish to the Marymoor connector. Through Marymoor Park to the Sammamish River Trail. North on the River Trail until it joins/becomes the Burke Gilman Trail. Follow the Burke all the way to the U-District. At the U cross the Montlake Bridge, then the signed bike route for the Lake Washington Loop to Lake Washington Blvd. South to Seward Park, loop around the Park and then south to Renton where you connect with the Cedar River Trail. Cedar River to Cedar Grove Road then Cedar Grove Road to Issaquah-Hobart Road and home.

A King County Bike Map will show you everything you need.