|Lawn mower races!|
Tuesday, August 27, 2013
Sand Point, Idaho to Mead, Washington ( a northern suburb of Spokane) Aug 24
70 miles in 5:25. August 24 -----(Aug. 23 isn't missing, we just didn't do ANYTHING. It was a total veggie day, as we sat around while they finished working on the slide seal on RV. We did see a guy have a medical emergency while we were having a beer at the Laughing Dog Brewery, which closed at 8 pm on a Friday night, by the way.) We were drinking Huckleberry Cream Ale!
Okay---the ride out of Sand Point started sort of late, because I was still sleeping off my 100 mile ride from two days before. I had mentioned in a previous post that Idaho was not a bike friendly place, but as I rode out of Sand Point on US 2, I picked up a bike trail that went about ten miles to the next town, and it kept me off of a road without shoulders. As soon as the trail ended, US 2 became very nice, with wide shoulders, and it followed the Pend Oreille ( pronounced Pondoray) River, until it met the Priest River, pretty close to the state line. Both of these rivers were lined with lake side properties, boat docks, and recreational facilities. There was yet another small dam right before the state line, the Albeni Falls dam. I took a little time and checked that out. All this takes me back to the other day when I mentioned about the undeveloped riverfront property that I was riding near. It seems that there is just so much riverfront property around here that there is not enough people to inhabit it, therefore, it stays undeveloped. I think that is great. I also learned recently that Idaho has more miles of river and lakefront than any other state of the union. Who would have guessed that!
After I went through the town of Priest River, I soon hit the Washington state line near the town of Newport. I didn't see a sign welcoming me to Washington, which was disappointing, but I was distracted by a large crowd in a strip mall parking lot, and I heard a loud speaker. It turned out to be lawn mower races in the parking lot of the Ben Franklin store. I couldn't resist, so I pulled into the parking lot and watched the fun for a while. Once I left Newport, US 2 basically turned very interstate-like. It became very sterile and unscenic, except for one nice area around Diamond Lake. I spent as much time watching for broken glass and tire retread blowouts as I did looking around. There was plenty of traffic on US 2, but absolutely no truck traffic on a Saturday. The shoulders were eight feet wide almost all the way to our campground, where the northern suburbs really start. I dropped quite a bit of elevation and had a cooperative wind, so I made good time on this trip, and my legs felt really good. Seventy miles flew by, and I wasn't really ready to stop when it was time, but it was getting to be Saturday evening, and I don't like riding during times when people are more likely to have had drinks.