Tuesday, 24 July 2012

Mille Bornes - The Olympic Peninsula Ride Part 2

View from Port Townsend Ferry
The Coupeville - Port Townsend ferry is a nice ferry - not too small, not too long, not too expensive - in fact it was only $5.50 for me and my scoot. On board there were plenty of maps and brochures, comfortable seating, and a small cafeteria, although it was closed by the time I got there. I wandered around the boat, checking out all of the different levels and went outside a few times. The crossing was a bit more than half an hour and the weather was nice as we made our way into Port Townsend.

The Great Big Sea

After I arrived in Port Townsend, I drove around the main area by the water, looking for a place to eat. I was impressed by the town - it has a nice feel to it - a bit touristy but still friendly - and is very pleasing to the eye.

Water Street, Port Townsend
After parking (in a motorcycle specific spot, no less) I wandered around, looking for a place for lunch. I ended up stopping at the Water Street Creêerie, hoping to find a nice savoury crepe. I was not disappointed. I ordered the California crêpe which had turkey, cheese, avocado and lots of vegetables. After the friendly waiter delivered my meal, I sat outside, in the sun, and marvelled at the finished product. It was a massive thing, and I was a bit intimidated by its size but managed to finish it all off!

A tasty California  crêpe - but very big!
Left Port Townsend - 1pm 195 km

Troll Haven Castle
After my meal, I gassed up and headed out along the northern part of the Olympic Peninsula. After the last bit of SR20, I hit highway 101 which was nice to ride as it went by both trees and sea. My first stop was Troll Haven in Gardiner, A little off the road, it is a group of rental homes but the one that is interesting is the castle at the entrance.

Next stop was my first - and as it turned out, my last - casino. For quite a while, I used to stop at every casino I was, dropped $5 in a slot machine, and stay until I either doubled my money or lost the $5. I thought I would reinstate the practice but it didn't turn out that well. For starters, I didn't have a $5 so I ended up putting $10 in the machine. I got ahead about $2 at the beginning and then started the slow spiral down to nothingness.

Fancy scooter in the casino
It was a lot like being in Vegas because you could smoke in the casino. I was also offered a drink by a cute waitress but declined as I still had a long ride ahead. On the way out, I noticed the non-smoking slots of which there were four or five huddled around the entrance in the lobby. Also on the way out I saw this beautiful motorcycle (not sure about the details, just know it looks nice) and then headed out on highway 101.

They were both nice stops to make and I would have made more similar stops if I didn't have such a large amount of distance to cover. It had taken me almost 5 hours to go 195 km. Little did I realize that I when I left Port Townsend, that I had about 250 km still to go!

I was able to get some pictures near the water as I continued on. The weather, unfortunately turned form sunny and warm to misty and cool. The top half of the peninsula was fairly good, weather wise, but things started to decline as soon as I headed south. By the time I got to Forks, with its turn off for Rialto Beach, I was in no mood to take a half an hour side trip. Bah, I told myself, I've seen enough virgin beaches to last me a lifetime! Bah!

Forks - 4:15pm   - 365 km

The last two hours were moist and cool. Luckily, I had brought a long sleeved shirt as it was cooler than I thought it would be. It wasn't exactly raining but you could feel water permeate everything. I even zipped up my side zippers on my Corazzo jacket.

A little comic relief was offered as I passed the teeny place called Humptulips.  According to Wikipedia:
The name Humptulips may have come from a local Native American language, meaning 'hard to pole', referring to the difficulty local Native Americans had poling their canoes along the Humptulips River.According to other sources the word means 'chilly region' Another possibility is that Humptulips was the name of a band of the Chehalis tribe.

I finally made it into Aberdeen at 6:15pm. I hate to be negative but the fact that Kurt Cobain was born here and started 'grunge music' became very clear as the town seemed rather, well, grungy. Maybe that's just because my hotel was cheap and I only saw along the highway. I hope so.

I checked into the Olympic Hotel ($60) and, after a nice hot shower, went to Safeway and picked up some Chinese food and a bottle of wine. I stuffed myself on the tasty food ($4.99 for two types of dished, rice and an egg roll that tasted like fish) and had two glasses of wine before I staggered to bed (from exhaustion, mind you, not the two glasses of wine).

I made it!

Aberdeen    6:15pm (10 hours riding)   537 km


30 Days In Europe said...

atta boy dave! enjoying the blog, keep writing.

Circle Blue said...

I've never been to a Casino and suspect I never will, but I must say you sound like you have a great plan for enjoying what it has to offer.

I'm spoiled by there being no smoking nearly everywhere I go. It would be a surprise, nearly a shock, to be in a smoking area again.

Great photos and thanks for taking me to Humptulips.

David Masse said...

Dave you and Bob are very lucky to have the chance to roam like that. Those of us without the luxury are lucky you take us with you. Great trip, great posts, nice life lesson for your students. The best way to teach is to lead by example.