• The Sculpin

    That’s my favorite ride.

    The trestles! You didn’t mention the trestles.

    July 08, 2013
  • […] recently posted about their trip, and I encourage you to read the whole thing. But the takeaway for them was that the trail could be quite an attraction, helping the small […]

    July 08, 2013
  • Doug

    I live in Seattle and have ridden long portions of the Iron Horse twice now. Once to the first campsite after the tunnel and the second time as part of a five day loop through the Cascades.

    You’re right that it simply isn’t as well known as it should be, considering it is bar-none the easiest, most pleasant way across the Cascades and starts at the edge of the most populous part of the entire Pacific Northwest.

    After the big tunnel the trail is very ridable, though right now the smaller tunnels are all technically closed. Most tragic is that the section between Cle Elum and Ellensburg that runs along the Yakima in the canyon is closed. The 15 mile alternate is on paved roads and climbs up to a ridge before dropping back down. I think SR10 is a better choice, but when I tried to get through, THAT was closed for bridge construction too.

    Anyways, great ride report!

    July 08, 2013
  • piskian


    July 08, 2013
  • So what is the relation of this to the John Wayne Pioneer Trail?


    July 08, 2013
  • Paul they are one and the same but go by different names.


    July 08, 2013
  • Paul the Iron Horse State Park actually is only a portion of the John Wayne Trail. The State park goes from North Bend (Rattlesnake Lake area) to Vantage. The John Wayne trail goes farther across Eastern Washington and is not all part of the State Parks.

    July 08, 2013
  • Sean

    Any chance of posting a GXP or other map to help others plan trips?

    July 08, 2013
  • Paul Capewell

    Beautiful! Excellent write-up and the photographs really add to it. Very inspiring…

    July 09, 2013
  • Jason Ferrier

    Russ – I have had the same issues with incompatabilities putting bikes with racks onto the front bus racks.

    The best solution I have found so far is to put the bike on “backwards”, lean the bike away from the clamping rack arm to allow you to place the top of it right behind the seatpost / seat tube cluster and let it clamp down on the rack or rack stays.

    If you want to feel a bit more comfortable about this, toss a toe strap around the rear wheel to the rack to keep it tight.

    I have pictures of this somewhere on my camera. Once I post them online, I’ll send them to you.

    July 09, 2013
  • I’m planning a full-on ride across WA for 2014 with my son (Idaho border to La Push). Should take us about 10 days of riding plus a rest day.

    So far we have ridden the section from Rattlesnake Lake to Cle Elum (the old rail depot).

    I would love to meet Steve someday and pick his brain about the trail east of Cle Elum. Forward him this message, if you wish.

    July 11, 2013
  • Brad

    Doug — planning on riding JWT next weekend from Suncadia down to Ellensburg & back. Do you mean the entire trail between Cle Elum & Eburg is closed?
    Or are you referring to the closure of the tunnels in between the 2 towns? Which as I understand from reports today have now been reopened?

    Many thanks.

    July 19, 2013
  • I just rode the Ironhorse this past weekend with a friend – Paul and Betty (Retrovelo Paul and Rivendell Betty Foy). We rode from Seattle thru Woodinville and up the Snoqualmie Valley Trail to get to the trailhead at Rattlesnake. We made the entire trip to Vantage. It is an incredibly beautiful ride.
    Conditions on the other hand, deteriorate east of Easton. The trip into Ellensburg was rough gravel, east of Ellensburg was almost treacherous. We only had to walk our bikes a good park of the way between the edge of the Yakima Firing Range and the Bolyston tunnel as the trail was completely loosed up from heavy horse traffic. The trail remains very loose all the way to Vantage and at each hill cut the path was checkered with basalt boulders and rocks that have accumulated since the last trail grading.

    August 13, 2013
  • Dave

    Hey Russ how did you like the Surly Ogre. I have a Vaya which I love, but I am thinking of getting into mountain bike off road touring. I am curious about bikes like the Surly Troll, Salsa Fargo, and the Ogre. I wonder if it is slow/hard riding a heavy large tire bike like that or if it is not really an issue?


    August 16, 2013
  • @Dave – Loving the Ogre so far. There is definitely a speed difference b/w it and the Vaya. The bike is generally heavier and the tires aren’t the zippiest. Where it does shine is in rough terrain and single track. We’ve been running the tires at around 25psi and they’ve got great traction.

    Actually contemplating making mine a semi-fat bike with a wider rim and Knard tires in the front 🙂


    August 16, 2013
  • Dave

    Sounds interesting. Next chance I get I am going to try and test ride a large Ogre and a large Fargo and see how they ride. I have an old 26 inch mountain bike, but I always feel sort of slow on the 26 inch tires.


    August 18, 2013
  • Russ, what an awesome looking trip! I’ve been touring with a Karate Monkey for a few years now, and love it on the gravel roads with 47mm wide rims and 2.35 Big Apples. A Knard up front would be an interesting idea…

    Just a quick question about your rear rack: What is it? And is it stiff enough? I’ve had a hard time finding a decent stiff enough rack for my KM…

    February 17, 2014
  • Russ,
    Thanks, great writ up about the Iron Horse trail! Yes, a ” great resource is the Iron Horse Trail”. I have ridden it many times. I will ride it again on 7-25-2014 from my house in Woodinville to the Meany lodge: http://www.meanylodge.org/activities/family_weekend/family_weekend.html
    The Meany Lodge is on the east side of the 2.5 mile Snoqualmie tunnel. About a 70 mile ride from Woodinville to Meany Lodge.

    July 23, 2014

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