BQ Un-Meeting: September 26 in Cle Elum WAJan Heine
It’s less than two weeks to the Bicycle Quarterly Un-Meeting! What’s unique about our approach is that it is not a set, planned route, but rather the opportunity to loosely gather and explore together. Last year’s meeting near Mount Rainier was great fun (above). This year we will meet on September 26 and 27 in Cle Elum, Washington.
The idea is to get together to ride bikes and talk in an informal setting. We really don’t need much more organization, fees, or prepared services. We are setting up a time and place and hope you’ll meet us there if you’d like to ride with like-minded cyclists. You’ll be able to figure out how to get there and where to stay.
Hahn did a recon trip up to Cle Elum and scouted the accommodations. For those who want to camp, we’ll be at the Whispering Pines RV Park in a nice, secluded area by the pond. There are showers, bathrooms and a propane grill. There is a burn ban as of today, so we won’t be able to talk around a campfire, but I’m sure we’ll figure out a way to hang out at night near our campsites. Cle Elum also has a number of inns and motels.
The Bicycle Quarterly crew will arrive on Friday night. Saturday’s ride will start at 8 in the morning at the campground. At 8:15, we’ll stop at the Cle Elum bakery (E 1st and NE Peoh Ave) for supplies. You can meet us there, too.
From there, we’ll head into the mountains. Most of us probably will explore a gravel loop, possibly the old road from Liberty to Swauk Pass. If you prefer to stay on pavement, you can head up the highway over Swauk Pass and then return via the old road on Old Blewett Pass. Or you can just go up to Old Blewett Pass and back. There are many options… The rides will probably be between 60 and 80 miles (100-135 km), but you can shorten the rides by turning around early. We plan to be back in Cle Elum for dinner.
On Sunday, we’ll ride back to Seattle via the John Wayne Trail – again on gravel, avoiding the highways except for a short section around Snoqualmie Falls.
Please note that no services will be provided, so make sure that you and your bike are in shape to do these rides (ie: there will be no sag wagons!) Bringing a map of the area is a good idea, too. (We recommend the Delorme Washington State Atlas & Gazetteer, where we cut out the sheets we need for a given ride.)
Last year’s Un-Meeting was great fun, and I am sure this year’s will be great, too. See you there!