Author Topic: Why does the PC route bypass Olympic Peninsula?  (Read 9248 times)

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Offline johnsondasw

Re: Why does the PC route bypass Olympic Peninsula?
« Reply #15 on: August 17, 2016, 12:21:36 pm »
i disagree with  those posters who think the peninsula is not great unless you do the side trips.

Well, I guess we agree to disagree.  ;)

I will have to say that 101 was for the most part manageable on the west side of the Olympic Peninsula (from about Port Angeles down to Aberdeen), when it came to traffic levels or grades--no real steep or high areas for the most part. But for me, I could do that style of riding (quietish riding through rolling hills with a mix of forest and clearcut) in plenty of places down here in Oregon. If I go up that way, I want to see the highlights of the peninsula--and Olympic National Park--which means for me doing side trips.

We had four days. It would be ideal to have 8 days and do it all.  Of course, you'd need an 8 day window of decent weather, which is achievable in mid summer, some years.  I did and 8 day mountaineering trip in the heart of the Olympic Mtns (Bailey Range Traverse) in early August 1993 and we had rain on only the 7th day.
May the wind be at your back!

Offline cgarch

Re: Why does the PC route bypass Olympic Peninsula?
« Reply #16 on: August 21, 2016, 06:42:53 pm »
Interesting discussion. I too have ridden both Lake Crescent (2009) and 112-113 (2014) and chipped in with comments as appropriate in this forum. We've been spending a lot of time in that area in the last 6-7 years and love riding in the area. I'm surprised to not see any mention of the Olympic Discovery Trail (olympicdiscoverytrail.com) as an alternative route. [I have issues with the ODT around Sequim but that's another matter.] Sure the two tunnels are not open yet, but when they are, avoiding Lake Crescent will be a no brainer. The west end at Lake Crescent is paved and looks pretty sweet. The stretch from PA out to Joyce is darn nice as well. It's just the gap between the two . .  As to the nature of traffic along Lake Crescent it certainly is no worse, and in my mind, a whole lot better, than riding through Sea Ranch in CA where there has been no upgrade on CA 1 since Sea Ranch was built. And yes, the clearcuts in the area suck and do detract from both routes. YMMV.

Since we've traveled to Port Townsend several times in the last three years, we've driven the stretch along Hood Canal - other than the proximity of campgrounds I wouldn't take it over the peninsula route - way more traffic (and fast) and so-so shoulders. Certainly scenic enough.

Count me in the camp that favors riding the Peninsula and taking in the side trips, if you can. The part that does rub me the wrong way is the lack of HB camping sites at both Kalaloch and Hoh (not to mention a lack of showers). Sure would like to see ACA put some pressure on the Park Service on this. Riding 18 miles one way from 101 to the Hoh to not find a camping spot is not acceptable.

Craig
Santa Rosa, CA

Addendum: see this for trail status http://www.olympicdiscoverytrail.com/planning_info/trail_status.html

Of note from that page is this:
Hwy 112 and Lake Crescent to Cooper Ranch Rd

Work is continuing along the Waterline Route, which will connect from Hwy 112, via Gossett Rd, to the East Beach trailhead on Lake Crescent. Current effort is on opening the section of old RR grade from the south end of Gossett Rd to the Waterline Road. When completed this will become the ODT route, replacing the temporary Joyce-Piedmont Rd. route. (posted July, 2015)

The Spruce RR segment construction is now complete from East Beach Trailhead to the old RR grade, except for paving. Paving will be the final step when all construction is complete, about 2018-19. The trail is open now, and users can connect through to SolDuc Rd and beyond using the old (rough) single track path through the tunnel area. This section will be closed summer 2016 for construction through the first tunnel. Specific closure dates will be posted here when available. (posted Jan 2016)

The 2 mile connecting segment, from the Hwy 101 crossing west of SolDuc Rd to the SolDuc bridge, has completed design and should be in construction summer 2016. In the meantime, use the shoulders of Hwy 101 and the 2918 Rd to connect between existing trail segments.

The trail from the 2918 Road (Sol Duc Bridge) to Cooper Ranch Rd Trailhead will be subject to temporary closures between May 12 and about Sept 1 2016, due to selective logging adjacent to the trail and some hauling on the shared (wide) section of the trail. Closures will be posted at both ends of this section and trail users can detour by using the shoulders of Hwy 101 between the FS 2918 road and Cooper Ranch Rd. There will be no closures on weekends or Federal holidays. (Posted May 2016)

Major construction work has been announced for Hwy 101 along the south shore of Lake Crescent for 2017 and 2018. We do not expect any significant widening but the shoulder paving should be repaired. There will be periods of closure of Hwy 101 with traffic rerouted to Hwy 112. These may coincide with closure of the trail on the north shore as part of the tunnel reconstruction, in which case the bike alternate will have to be Hwy 112 (there is no other way through). Closure dates for both will be posted here as they are announced. (posted May 2015)
« Last Edit: August 21, 2016, 07:31:55 pm by cgarch »

Offline adventurepdx

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Re: Why does the PC route bypass Olympic Peninsula?
« Reply #17 on: August 22, 2016, 12:28:09 pm »
As to the nature of traffic along Lake Crescent it certainly is no worse, and in my mind, a whole lot better, than riding through Sea Ranch in CA where there has been no upgrade on CA 1 since Sea Ranch was built.

That's interesting. I rode through Sea Ranch on my tour 10 years ago and don't remember anything particularly bad about it. I did do it during a weekday morning in September, though. However, I hit Lake Crescent during the worst possible time possible--a Friday night in July right after they freshly chipsealed the road (and there were no warning signs for it!) The gravel was still in thick drifts on the side of the road, so we basically had to "take the lane". Not fun.

Since we've traveled to Port Townsend several times in the last three years, we've driven the stretch along Hood Canal - other than the proximity of campgrounds I wouldn't take it over the peninsula route - way more traffic (and fast) and so-so shoulders. Certainly scenic enough.

Yeah, the inside route on 101 is a bit busier than I wanted, but yeah, scenic. Going the long way around is quieter.


Count me in the camp that favors riding the Peninsula and taking in the side trips, if you can. The part that does rub me the wrong way is the lack of HB camping sites at both Kalaloch and Hoh (not to mention a lack of showers). Sure would like to see ACA put some pressure on the Park Service on this. Riding 18 miles one way from 101 to the Hoh to not find a camping spot is not acceptable.

Agreed on the hiker/biker sites! When I did my tour it was difficult to find camping at the campgrounds. A couple nights the ranger basically plopped us on the service road since the regular campsites were full. I'm glad they were accommodating, but I'd rather camp in a real spot if I can.

Offline johnsondasw

Re: Why does the PC route bypass Olympic Peninsula?
« Reply #18 on: August 22, 2016, 01:59:31 pm »
I also don't remember any problems with the Sea Ranch area in CA.  And I rode it in mid summer--late June/early July time frame.  Also, no issues with Lake Crescent (July 12, 2004), but I would not want to do it right after chip sealing, with berms of loose gravel on the sides of the road! Most tours of any significant distance have dicey sections where you have to very alert.  It's part of touring. One of the most hairy sections I've ever been on was approaching Kalispell, MT, from the west on HWY 2 on a hot summer afternoon. You don't think of Montana as that sort of state.  Watch your mirror and stay alert, and, ergo, alive. 
May the wind be at your back!