25th Anniversary Tour - Day 52

08/07/2006 04:21:41 by Administrator

From: New Port, Washington
To: Ione, Washington
Mileage: 53

Our ride today paralleled route 20 on the other side of the Pend Oreille River on North LeClerc Road. Yet another stellar ride, we know we keep writing that sentence, but it is just . . . true. Quiet road, ospreys, turkeys, golden AND bald eagles, Selkirk Mountains, Pend Oreille River and for added enjoyment, a herd of bison!

We met a fellow northern tier cyclist, Fred, a couple of days back on Route 37, and he had warned us about road construction around Newport. Keeping this in mind, we had breakfast downtown then proceeded to the information center in Newport. The gentleman at the center was very nice, and told us of road construction on Route 20 from Usk to Cusick. After showing him the Adventure Cycling map, which showed our route on LeClerc road. He assured us that there was NO construction that way.

You are guessing correctly, 5 miles into our ride on LeClerc road we encountered road construction. While waiting for the "follow truck", we had a great conversation with the two flag women. They had seen a number of cyclist going both east to west and west to east and actually told us the major stops that we will be making and have taken on this section of the Adventure Cycling map. After about 15 minutes, the follow truck showed up, and SeeMore bravely followed behind through 1.5 miles of road construction. One section had pretty soft sand (this is SeeMore's number one fear!), but we made it through and really enjoyed the rest of today's journey.

We stopped at Manresa Grotto for a rest break (the two photo today are of Manresa Grotto), it is a couple of caves carved out of the rock when the river was at this level. We then had a picnic lunch at the Panhandle Campground (USFS), yet another campground with water front sites.

Today was not all wine and roses. Noel had his first sick day of the trip. He had a pretty bad headache, and not sure if it was caused by allergies, smoke (there are multiple forest fires burning in Washington state), or some bad food. His headache finally cleared about 10 miles from Ione, and thankfully so because it reached 94 degrees at 3:00.

We spent the afternoon out of the sun, and will investigate Ione once the sun gives us a break.