Sunday, July 8, 2018

Go! Day One will be hard to beat

Besides being inaugural, the Day 1 schedule was unique because all riders and the three support vehicles had to make a Washington State Ferry sailing at 6:55 AM. The Mukilteo ferry terminal was a bit over 7 miles from our hotel, so we were up, fed and on the road at 6:15. The morning was cool, clear and crisp. Some might have called a bit under 60 degrees chilly but I thought it ideal - certainly no call for sleeves, jackets or leggings!

Here is a good choice for your second or third home: get a view of Puget Sound and Mount Baker.

Riding down one of the rollers on the way to the ferry:

The ferry ride gave us a chance to meet and talk to other riders.

We weren't too far into the ride before Paul observed that this group was a bit different from other groups we've ridden with. Everyone seem very relaxed with little appetite for combativeness in riding style, or worry about staying up with other riders. About half of these folks already have one or more (or 10 in one case) transcontinental rides under their belts. Its not about impressing other riders, the consensus seems to be measuring your effort for the long haul.

The ferry delivered us to Whidbey Island which I've visited in a car a few times in years past but I was unprepared for the fine riding our skillfully chosen course provided. When our route was on the main arterial we found wide clean shoulders with ample room to stay out of the way of traffic, and when we turned off on the side roads things got really beautiful. Having clear weather with great views of the Olympics to the west alternating with Mount Baker in the bed of Cascade mountains to the east made today's 97 miles fly by. 

We've heard tell of past tours getting cold, wet, low ceiling weather on their first day out, and we could imagine that would make it a whole lot less enjoyable, but thankfully we don't have to. 

The north end of Whidbey is linked to the Anacortes Peninsula by the Deception Pass bridge. Since there was no hurry to get to our lunch of leftovers from Saturday's rider meeting, we spent some time off the bike soaking in the dramatic view from the bridge.

The rising tide rips through the gap. The little white dots seen in the movie below are ducks.

We pulled into our Sedro Woolley motel around 2:30 with plenty of time to recover and do a little touring on the way to our pizza dinner. Sedro Woolley is proud of its background as a lumber town and so are we:

Art shot of the day: using the camera from a moving bike results in accidental shots and this time I got lucky:


  1. You're going to have to mount a camera to your helmet to capture some of your windy descends. Looks like a fun start!

  2. Sounds like great first day! I can tell you guys are having fun.