4 Wheel Bob – the movie

I once hiked with 4 Wheel Bob. His ascent of 14,252-foot (4344m) White Mountain Peak, California.

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Bob’s smiling here. But let me confirm that trip was bloody tough. I could never possibly have made it in his chair.

The documentary about Bob is finally coming out.

Click PLAY or watch the trailer on YouTube.

He and filmmaker Tal Skloot have been working on it for 5 years.

Follow Bob Fourwheelbob Coomber on Facebook for updates on that project.

cycle hiking San Juan island

Cycle hiking the Islands – trip report by site editor Rick McCharles

Due to ferry schedules I arrived Friday Harbor late in the day. The town’s name originates from Joseph Poalie Friday, a native Hawaiian.

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I purchased food for dinner and headed out to find a place to camp.

Next morning early I was back at the Bean Cafe. These free wifi spots are my longest breaks during each day.

Tourist information told me the south was more scenic than the north, so I headed towards American Camp.

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There are a number of trails. I opted to start towards Grandma’s Cove and made my own loop back.

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It’s very popular.

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American Camp is a legacy of the Pig War, a confrontation in 1859 between the United States and Great Britain over the Canada-U.S. border. Over a pig. Not kidding.

This was my first really hot, sunny day on the bike.

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At times I wished I’d rented one of Susie’s Scootcars instead.:-)

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Nearby is Cattle Point Lighthouse.

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Jakle’s Lagoon is the trailhead for several interesting looking hikes. Hot and nearly out of water, I gave them a miss. This time.

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After lunch I headed north to Roche Harbor with it’s weird sculpture garden.

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The resort is cluttered. Too near the airport for my liking. But I did like the colour scheme.

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Next stop – English Camp.

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Much quieter than American Camp.

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It was late in the day when I finally reached Lime Kiln Park State Park.

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A highlight of the day was spotting Orcas.

GRANITE GEAR – VIRGA 2 backpack

I bought the Virga 2, my 3rd Virga since seeing it recommended by gearjunkie in 2007. It is  lightweight at 1lb 3oz. But not all that durable.

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

You can  buy directly from Granite Gear or Backcountry Gear.

Granite Gear does not seem to want to know me unless I live in the United States. In the end I bought from Amazon.com and had it shipped to an address in the States.

REI lists this pack, but does not have it in stock in many stores.😦

Granite Gear truly does have crappy distribution.

 

cycle hiking Orcas Island

Cycle hiking the Islands – trip report by site editor Rick McCharles

I crossed the amazing bridge between Whidbey and Hidalgo worried about my front tire.

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After the third time pumping more air I inquired at a general store as to the nearest cycle shop. A gentleman there offered to drive me the 8 miles to Skagit Cycle in Anacortes.

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I don’t trust myself to fix a tire correctly.😦

Waiting on the next ferry, I cycled up to the Little Cranberry Lake area.

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Nice, but from the little I saw, NOT impressed with Anacortes. Too big. Too much traffic. Not much to write home about. But there is a Jack in the Box.:-)

During the summer it’s a busy ferry over to Orcas.

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Hydration is important.:-)

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As is keeping your paniers locked to your bike.

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I’d been looking forward to Orcas and – as it turned out – it was my favourite island, so far.

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I cycled directly to Eastsound. That’s the main town.

I checked the hostel. It cost US$50 for a dorm bed. I don’t think I’ve ever paid more than $30.

So I cycled on to Moran State Park. Wild camped near the campground.

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Stinging nettle was my only gripe. There are a few mosquitoes too.

Moran encompasses over 5,000 acres of various terrain including forests, wetlands, bogs, hills, and lakes. It is the largest public recreation area in the San Juan Islands and the fourth largest state park in the state. …

The park offers 38 miles of hiking trails …

If you go to Orcas for hiking, be sure to find a copy of the free brochure.

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Next morning I climbed out of the tent and walked directly on to the Twin Lakes trail via Mountain Lake.

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A crew was doing trail construction at Twin Lakes. I had lunch and watched them. Good work.

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Returning via a series of cascades, I resolved to return one day to bike these trails. After Sept 15th they are all open to mountain bikes.

Back to the tent to relax. Then on to my next adventure. Cycling to the summit of Mt Constitution.

… the highest point in the San Juan Islands. A stone observation tower patterned after a medieval watch tower stands at the summit. …

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I resolved to only go as high as I could make it without getting off the saddle. It’s 5 miles at an average 8 degree slope. Turned out I made it to the top.:-) Beautiful vista.

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After a steep and fast ride back down the 5 miles I headed on to lovely Doe Bay resort.

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I could definitely stay here for a few days.:-)

But I wanted to stay near Eastsound that evening. I ended up wild camping in an excellent city park called Crescent Beach Preserve. It was close to a superb coffee shop – Enzo’s.

I rode next to Westsound. En route I hiked Turtleback Mountain.

I started at the north trailhead and hiked up to Waldron overlook. The trail is better for mountain biking than hiking, I’d say.

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On the return I stopped at North Valley Overlook, a tranquil, rural scene.

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And finally all the way to Deer Harbor.

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Time to celebrate.

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cycle hiking Whidbey Island

Cycle hiking the Islands – trip report by site editor Rick McCharles

I caught the ferry from Port Townsend. Immediately cycled to Ebey’s Landing for the Bluff-Ridge Trail.

I started from the trailhead at the end of Ebey’s Landing Road. Here’s the view looking back to the start.

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Ebey Map

minimum 3.7 mile loop

This hike is ALL GOOD. The best I’ve found in the islands, so far.

There’s a prairie section leading to the bluff.

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Plenty of interesting things to see along the way.

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Almost everyone starts along the bluff, returns via the beach trail. But I enjoyed the breeze and vistas so much I decided to stay on the high road both there and back.:-)

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To celebrate the great hike, I stopped in next at Kapaws Iskreme on Front Street in Coupeville.

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Coupeville is a nice little tourist town.

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Though I’d heard nothing about it I decided to stop in at Dugualla Bay State Park.

Turns out I could have cycled the trail, but instead I hiked it down to the ocean.

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The famous State park is Deception Pass. I decided to camp there. Next morning I’d cycle across the bridge to Hidalgo Island.

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It was a good spot. I slept in until 7:30am. Enjoyed a pot of coffee. And decided to explore the trails of Deception Pass by bike and on foot.

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Unfortunately I’d somehow acquired a slow leak. Adding air only worked for short bursts.

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I opted to head for the nearest bike shop. Save Deception Pass for future adventures.

Turns out it’s the most-visited park in Washington with over 2 million visitors / year. I’ll plan to stay for a couple of days next time.

related trip report – Whidbey Island – Ebey’s Landing