The first day of the new year requires something a little special. And while snowbike trips are nothing new, it’s the exploring and views that I look for.
The weather forecast, interestingly enough, was for cold and clear-ish in the NW of the state. Usually, that’s reserved for the eastern Cascades. Looks like Mt. Baker is it! I hadn’t been to this volcano yet, and the more southerly of the two SnoParks is almost west of Mt. Baker, and should have decent light conditions around noon.
The drive to Glacier, WA, was interesting – quite a few cars were in the ditch along the Interstate, and driving the snow and slush-covered byways in early morning felt a bit like a daze. That is, until 4 idiots in pickup trucks came careening towards me at high speed.
Sunrise was pretty.
The ride started with a short warmup on a snowed-in dirt road, before turning into a snowmobile trail. The trail is mostly in the woods.
After the first 4 miles it gets a bit steep at 10% grade. The snow was fairly well packed, though.
After about mile 6, it was all pushing. It didn’t help that I am riding on a 80mm rim in the back since my big one broke – it definitely feels less stable and has less traction.
A group of snowmobilers came to a stop and gave me the thumbs up. One of them writes for an outdoor magazine and wanted to know *why* I do this: for the downhill, or for the snow adventure? He said that I am nearing at a very nice view point, maybe 1.5 miles more.
Never listen to directions from people with engines. Pushing for 1.5 hours, I arrived at the fabled viewpoint.
If I only knew where Mt. Baker is!
I decided to push a bit higher in hopes of less tree coverage. Always remember to look back:
And I hit the jackpoint – at least for how much energy I was going to spend today.