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Thread: A brief return to the PNW.... :) :)

              
   
   
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
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    Default A brief return to the PNW.... :) :)

    Hi gang - long time, no post......

    A week of work will have me back in my proper locale, wonderful Western Washington.... I'm taking a week of vacation on the backside of the trip, and planning a couple of overnight jaunts.

    One idea is a trip around the Olympic Peninsula. That one's pretty easy to figure out.

    The other idea is to wander up and over the North Cascades highway. In looking at Google Maps this evening, I found a road called Mountain Loop Highway. Looks like I could avoid some I-5 driving, and still work my way up to SR20.....

    A couple questions.
    1) Is that road of any interest from a scenery / picture taking perspective?
    2) Would I missing anything notable on SR20 between I-5 and Rockport?

    With only a week to play, I may just do the North Cascades trip, and extend it a couple days so I'm not too rushed.

    Anyway, if anyone has some perspectives in that area, I'd love to hear about them!

    Grimmwit

  2. #2
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    First of all, when are you scheduled to be here?

    Next, I only drove the Mountain Loop once, and that was last Fall on a cloudy day. My goal was shoot fall colors and there was plenty of that. (see http://www.stevebisig.com/portfolio/...shington-2015/ ).

    I know there were mountains there, but the clouds were too low to see them that day.

    Steve
    Steve

    K9PNW | Exploring the Pacific Northwest in my 1992 Toyota FJ80 Land Cruiser

    Pacific Northwest Backroad Adventures - Pacific Northwest Outdoor Adventure Forums

    Steve G. Bisig Photography
    - Pacific Northwest Photography: Nature, Landscapes, Rural, Urban

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve View Post
    First of all, when are you scheduled to be here?

    Next, I only drove the Mountain Loop once, and that was last Fall on a cloudy day. My goal was shoot fall colors and there was plenty of that. (see http://www.stevebisig.com/portfolio/...shington-2015/ ).

    I know there were mountains there, but the clouds were too low to see them that day.

    Steve
    Hi Steve,

    I'll check out your pics later today. I'll be flying out 7/4, working 7/5-8, then vacation from there. Still working out the logistics. I'll be working in Ellensburg for two days, and Yelm for two days. Was going to go to Ellensburg first, but may flip the work visits. Could then launch from Ellensburg towards North Cascades. Was going to do the loop clockwise, but would reverse direction if I started in E-burg.

    Did some more searches on that road after posting. Looks encouraging if the weather is nice.

  4. #4
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    Jun 2007
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    Yakima, WA
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    Hey, long time, no hear. Welcome back! YES, take the Mountain Loop Highway for sure. It is very scenic, offers a few points of interest and is usually in really good condition. Hwy 20 is okay, but the Mtn Loop is much more scenic. The Mtn Loop is good in either direction, but I personally like it better from south to north (Granite Falls to Darrington). Sure hope you have a good trip.
    Jerry
    Reading and Riding Northwest Backroads
    K7PNW

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by grimmwit View Post
    Hi Steve,

    I'll check out your pics later today. I'll be flying out 7/4, working 7/5-8, then vacation from there. Still working out the logistics. I'll be working in Ellensburg for two days, and Yelm for two days. Was going to go to Ellensburg first, but may flip the work visits. Could then launch from Ellensburg towards North Cascades. Was going to do the loop clockwise, but would reverse direction if I started in E-burg.

    Did some more searches on that road after posting. Looks encouraging if the weather is nice.
    I might be able to meet up on one of your vacation days. Have to check to see if family made plans for me.
    Steve

    K9PNW | Exploring the Pacific Northwest in my 1992 Toyota FJ80 Land Cruiser

    Pacific Northwest Backroad Adventures - Pacific Northwest Outdoor Adventure Forums

    Steve G. Bisig Photography
    - Pacific Northwest Photography: Nature, Landscapes, Rural, Urban

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve View Post
    I might be able to meet up on one of your vacation days. Have to check to see if family made plans for me.
    Hi Steve - that'd be awesome. Here's the way things look to be penciling out.

    It looks like I'll be heading up towards North Cascades Sunday July 9. Will be looking to stay overnight somewhere up there, maybe Winthrop. Interim days TBD depending on weather and such. I'd kind of like to make it to Grand Coulee while I'm up that way.

    Looking at maps, from Marblemount, I see a road labeled Cascade River Road. Looks like it hugs a river for some distance. Anyone been down that way?

    My return day from Eastern Washington will likely be via Chinook Pass. From there a drive up to Sunrise, then over to Paradise. Dinner at Copper Creek Inn (a MUST), then back to my brothers place.

  7. #7
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    Cascade River Road is a very special drive in late spring, before the snow melts. Fantastic mountain view at end of road, two or three big glaciers come together. Well worth the drive. Can't say what it looks like this year after so many warm days, otherwise excellent. If you have the time I highly recommend the drive.
    Jerry
    Reading and Riding Northwest Backroads
    K7PNW

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry View Post
    Cascade River Road is a very special drive in late spring, before the snow melts. Fantastic mountain view at end of road, two or three big glaciers come together. Well worth the drive. Can't say what it looks like this year after so many warm days, otherwise excellent. If you have the time I highly recommend the drive.
    Thanks Jerry!

    I finalized my itinerary overnight

    Day 1 - Lake Tapps --> Winthrop via North Cascades Highway and assorted side roads
    Day 2 - Winthrop --> Grand Coulee via Tonasket, Republic, Kettle Falls (I've never been in this area, and wanted to get to Grand Coulee. I like desolation too.
    Day 3 - Grand Coulee --> Chelan --> Ferry to Stehekin. Overnight in Stehekin
    Day 4 - Chelan back to base camp at my brother's place on Lake Tapps.

    Wish I could start tomorrow.

  9. #9
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    Do you have a date set for "Day 1"?

    Camping or hoteling at night?

    Steve
    Steve

    K9PNW | Exploring the Pacific Northwest in my 1992 Toyota FJ80 Land Cruiser

    Pacific Northwest Backroad Adventures - Pacific Northwest Outdoor Adventure Forums

    Steve G. Bisig Photography
    - Pacific Northwest Photography: Nature, Landscapes, Rural, Urban

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve View Post
    Do you have a date set for "Day 1"?

    Camping or hoteling at night?

    Steve
    Hi Steve - yea - Sunday July 10, staying at Hotel Rio Vista. Up early, speed run north to Mountain Loop Highway, then follow the road(s) wherever they take me while heading in the general direction of Winthrop.

    Kelly

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