Author Topic: seattle to portland  (Read 1844 times)

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Offline dvanwyk@gmail.com

seattle to portland
« on: March 30, 2011, 04:32:20 pm »
does anyone have a good low traffic route from seattle to portland for late summer bike touring?

Offline jeff s

Re: seattle to portland
« Reply #1 on: March 30, 2011, 08:13:30 pm »
Does it have to be direct?  If not, from Olympia you can head west to Aberdeen/Gray's Harbor on low-traffic roads paralleling hwy. 8, then down the coast and over the bridge to Astoria.  From there, there's a really quiet & beautiful route (hwy 202) to Vernonia, and from there on the Bank-Vernonia trail, to the outskirts of Portland.

here's the Washington State bike map:
http://www.wsdot.wa.gov/bike/statemap.htm

for Astoria to Portland, and other NW Oregon routes:
http://www.portlandonline.com/transportation/index.cfm?c=34809

From Seattle to Olympia i know nothing. You might check the Seattle-to-Porltand website (an annual 2 day ride) to see if they post their route.

Offline johnsondasw

Re: seattle to portland
« Reply #2 on: March 30, 2011, 08:17:20 pm »
I like the STP route a lot.  It is a group ride held every July and uses a route that works well.  Go the cascade.org site. There are other less direct routes one could make up with maps.
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Offline waynemyer

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Re: seattle to portland
« Reply #3 on: March 31, 2011, 11:47:51 am »
The STP route is pretty much the most commonly accepted course if you are just transiting between Seattle and Portland.  While not the most interesting course, it's proven and useful, with only a couple spots that are less than perfect, such as the Lewis and Clark bridge between WA and OR.
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Offline EnduroDoug

Re: seattle to portland
« Reply #4 on: March 31, 2011, 04:17:09 pm »
STP course was definitely low on traffic, but also low on scenery and low on flavor. I really believe the best parts of the STP course are the first 15 miles inside Seattle, near the lake.

That is until you hit the bridge into Oregon. Then there's tons of traffic, negative scenery, and lots of roadside flavor you might want to do without.

My bet would be to angle a bit further east towards Rainier and St. helens, or head further west towards the coast.

Offline adventurepdx

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Re: seattle to portland
« Reply #5 on: April 03, 2011, 06:12:20 pm »
That is until you hit the bridge into Oregon. Then there's tons of traffic, negative scenery, and lots of roadside flavor you might want to do without.

Well I wouldn't go as far as to say negative scenery, but I do agree about the tons o' traffic on the STP route once you cross the Lewis and Clark (Longview), as the route follows busy US 30.

There is an alternate route into Portland that connects to the STP route at Kelso/Longview, which is on the Washington side of the Lewis and Clark bridge:
http://www.bikely.com/maps/bike-path/Vancouver-to-Longview-WA
This route stays on the Washington side of the Columbia and crosses into Portland at Vancouver (Interstate Bridge). 
I've ridden this route once, and it is pretty nice, except for one big exception: the hill just south of Kalama.  It is an intense, "I hate my life" type of hill.  If you wanted to experience "Appalachian Grade" hills on the West Coast, here's your chance.  The only way to detour it is by hopping on the shoulder of I-5 (yep, the freeway) for about 5 miles.

And here's a routing for the STP:
http://www.bikely.com/maps/bike-path/Seattle-to-Portland

I'm planning on biking up to Seattle soon and use most of the STP route, but want to detour at Tacoma and take the ferry over to Vashon Island.  Has anyone done that route before?

Offline PeteJack

Re: seattle to portland
« Reply #6 on: April 13, 2011, 06:45:03 pm »
I ride Vashon Island frequently. When you get to the ferry terminal at the north end of the island. You can catch another ferry to Southworth on the Peninsula. From there it's a flat coastal ride to Bremerton via Port Orchard. From Bremerton there's a nice ferry ride to Seattle. this last ride is free because you only pay for ferries on the mainland side! If you take the Vashon ferry direct to Seattle it lands at Fauntleroy, from there it's urban and heavy traffic to downtown. The Bremerton ferry lands you at the downtown Seattle waterfront, yards from Pioneer Square. While there try Cafe Umbria it's a delight.

Offline adventurepdx

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Re: seattle to portland
« Reply #7 on: April 14, 2011, 07:24:18 pm »
PeteJack, thanks for the tip!  Didn't think of the ferry hop from Vashon to Bremerton to Seattle.  I'll have to look into that!