Cle Elum snowbike ride #2

It was snowing heavily this morning in central Washington, and the starting point for my planned route along Highway 97 was snowed in. Oops. Turned around and rode the Cle Elum ridge instead, again. Two things were noteworthy:

1. On the Coal Mines trail, a couple skiers came along with their dogs, wearing bike helmets. Curious. Upon closer inspection, the guys were wearing harnesses, and their dogs had shoes on. It’s called Skijoring, and they were out doing it.

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2. With fresh new snow, it was deep, slick, and soft in places, and a lot of pushing was had. In between hiking, I got to stash food, gloves and jackets in my new frame bag from Rogue Panda Designs out of Flagstaff, AZ. I had exchanged a few emails with the owner, Nick, about how I wanted it designed. It turned out beautifully: having only sent him a picture of my bike+ruler+cooking pot, he pieced the frame bag together. Special requests for wide-tapering at the bottom and zipper locations were implemented. I completely forgot the bag while riding. The water-proof zippers in their closed position are at the seat-tube, and there are no nasty zipper covers sticking out anywhere. With 3 zippers in total (1 left, 2 right), and a velcro’ed in horizontal divider, it’s easy to keep things organized.

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Reference picture sent for frame bag dimensioning.

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Nothing sticking out to hit/scrape my knees on!20160117_131250.jpg

By the time I came back to Cle Elum, the fresh snow had been compacted by vehicles. Looked pretty.

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4 Responses to Cle Elum snowbike ride #2

  1. nice bag, looks cold with all that snow but it is probably nice sometimes.

  2. 2wheeltrails says:

    Besides cold fingers when I don’t want to stop to put big mittens on, I’ve been warm on almost all winter bike rides. Today it was just around 30 F while snowing, so a very thin baselayer and a rainshell was sufficient 90% of the time. I know it doesn’t seem like it should be enough, but it was.

  3. mujozen says:

    Nice! Can you bike on the John Wayne trail this time of year? I have a new RP bag, too. Can’t wait to get out with it. Is your seat bag also by RP?

    • 2wheeltrails says:

      The JWT / Iron Horse trail is supposed to be open to multi-use, but I haven’t been on it much this year. A couple weeks ago, I rode west of the tunnel, but the snow was deep and only rideable near the Annette Lake trail crossing for about a mile up and 1/4 mile down. Last year, there was so little snow on the east side that a fatbike wasn’t necessary, but I suspect that that is very different now. https://2wheeltrails.wordpress.com/2014/12/18/boris-meet-the-snow/

      Do let me know how trail conditions are if you go!

      My seatbag is a Revelate Designs Viscacha. The bikepacking bags are great for winter biking with minimal backpack. Enjoy!

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