If you were driving between White Salmon and Trout Lake on Sunday, you probably saw some of the nearly 200 Ride Around Washington (RAW) cyclists who are participating in the Velos, Vistas & Vines Tour.
The bicycle group began its tour at the Columbia River and explores new routes from the Gorge to the Yakima Valley. RAW 2019 offers five days of great riding and a rest day in Goldendale with optional long and short loop rides.
RAW 2019 began with an overnight in Stevenson on Saturday, Aug. 3, prior to the first day of riding.
The optional bus transport from Seattle to Stevenson departs Saturday noon. We will arrive at the fairgrounds in time to check in, put up tents, head out for dinner and explore the town.
Stevenson to Trout Lake, day 1
Sunday, Aug. 4, was a great first day of riding with low mileage (48 miles) but a good amount of elevation gain (3,750 feet) for the cyclists. Leaving camp, cyclists began pedaling along the Columbia River before turning north at Cook and heading inland. The morning rest stop, at the top of the climb, offers great views of the Little White Salmon River. What goes up must come down and after the descent cyclists crossed the river at the Willard National Fish Hatchery and continued through the uplands, taking in views of Mt. Hood, the Columbia River, and the surrounding hills. They then returned to the Columbia at Underwood and crossed the White Salmon River before climbing again to lunch in Husum. After lunch, cyclists continued a gentle climb to camp at Trout Lake.
Mt. Adams loop ride, day 2
Monday, Aug. 5, was cyclists’ chance to ride through Washington wilderness and Cascade forests (50 plus miles) along lightly traveled roads that criss-cross the Pacific Crest Trail. The morning food stop was at Big Spring Creek with cyclists returning to camp in Trout Lake in time for lunch.
Trout Lake to Goldendale, day 3
On Tuesday, Aug. 6, bicyclists headed east from Trout Lake passing Conboy Lake National Wildlife Refuge on their way to Goldendale (52 miles with a total of 2,640 feet of climbing).
Rest Day or Optional Loops, day 4
Wednesday, Aug. 7, will be either a rest day for the cyclists or a chance to ride on two optional loops (24 or 68 miles with 799 or 3,354 feet of climbing). Both routes initially head south along State Route 97 for about a mile with a view of four mountains and the Columbia River valley before turning west towards Centerville, where the routes separate. The shorter route turns north and continues across the prairie before heading east back to Goldendale. The longer route continues west towards Lyle along the Columbia River. There will be lunch at the Lyle Activity Center. Once refueled, cyclists will initially follow the Klickitat River north and east as it gently climbs before turning away from the River for a final ascent to the Goldendale plateau.
Goldendale to Sunnyside, day 5
On Thursday, Aug. 8, the cyclists will travel 72 miles from Goldendale to Sunnyside, stopping for food at Rock Creek before tackling a two-mile scenic climb out of the valley followed by a gentle uphill into Bickleton. After lunch in Bickleton, it’s on to a camp in Sunnyside.
Sunnyside to Yakima, day 6
Friday, Aug. 9, is the last day of the ride, taking cyclists from Sunnyside to Yakima, traveling through Zillah. Once through Zillah, cyclists will head for the hills and cross Konnowac Pass, the lowest mountain pass in Washington State. The final ride is 45 miles with 1,700 feet of climbing.