Exploring The North Cascades

The Home Run

As mentioned earlier. Leavenworth is one of my favorite locations and the route from Leavenworth to my home is something I know like the palm of my hands. Leavenworth is around 120 miles (~193 kms) from home and it started with a fuel top up at Leavenworth. The last one for this trip. The fall sun had started to set and the camera were not going to be of much use here after this. So I packed all the gear inside and after adjusting all the layers for maximum warmth, we rolled on to the US Route 2 again. It was time to endure the cold of Steven’s Pass.

I was excited to be on the home stretch. No matter how much I enjoy the time spent on the saddle, I was quite tired and places that were not supposed to hurt were starting to hurt. I could hardly wait to reach home and hit the bed at this point.

On the way up Steven’s Pass, it was surprisingly not the cold that bothered me. I was caught by a surprise bout of rain, which came just as I crossed the Steven’s pass Skiing resort. Now cold, drenched and annoyed, I stopped at the next possible lay-by to don the rain gear. It was pouring when I stopped and by the I was done wearing all the gear, it stopped raining. The sky was a beautiful purple and it looked beautiful against the snow clad mountains. But at that time I was quite annoyed to admire the beauty and decided that next stop is going to be home.

Rain caught me by surprise. Stopped to change to rain gear

The rest of the route was uneventful. It was getting dark and raining in patches and there was a little bit of traffic in between. About 50 miles (80 kms) later, I entered the town of Monroe, WA. It was a sight for tired eyes. There was still a ways to go, but now I was close to home. Now I was in my ‘bored, so let’s take the bike out’ distance from home. Against the original plan, I decided to stop for a bit. From home, Monroe is accessible via back roads where I can take it easy and ride slow. So took this opportunity to take the ear plugs off which by this time was starting to irritate my ear.

ah Monroe, you were a sight to behold for the tired eyes..

Rest of the trip was uneventful. At around 8:00 PM, I reached home. Exhausted, hungry and more importantly, feeling accomplished. I had covered 463.4 miles (~745 kms) in this trip which is till date my record for longest ride in a day.

463 miles, 745 kms.. Mission accomplished. Now you can have your rest

Closing thoughts : Will I do it again? Absolutely. I will do a reverse of the trip though. Would love to do Home > Leavenworth > Lake Chelan > Winthrop > Washington Pass > Diablo > Home. That was to be the first ride of this year as well. Also, I want do the reverse so that I can enjoy the road which I could not enjoy last time. I still feel that I rushed through the 2nd half of the ride as I was starting to get worried about sun light and did not enjoy the road as much as the first half. Maybe this is something that you as readers would have realized as well as I did not have as much stories to tell in the 2nd half as the first one.

But this is a travel diary the way I remember it and I will try to make it up for the 2nd half the next time I go on this route. And I hope that if you travel by these roads, then remember and be amused at the thought that a Lone Traveler passed by this route on his beloved NineT.

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