If you are lucky enough to be in the area, Washington state offers many excellent opportunities to explore trails and roads. In this post we feature six great places to ride your bike in Washington. We have included three rides on trails, and three rides on roads.
Recommended Washington Bike Rides on Trails
Trail Ride in Washington # 1: Galbraith Mountain – Bellingham, WA
Even if you’ve already been out there, it’s likely you haven’t seen it all. Galbraith Mountain is chock full of single and double tracks, dirt roads, and a variety of terrains. The vantages are beautiful and the possibilities here are downright endless, making it one of the hottest spots for mountain biking in Washington.
Route summaries won’t make a lot of sense without a map, so picking one up in Bellingham is highly recommended (try Fanatik Bike Co.’s shop). Start by accessing Galbraith Lane Side from Bellingham: Take I-5 to exit 252 and take Samish Way until you see the dirt parking lot on your right.
Trail Ride in Washington #2: Tiger Mountain – East Tiger Summit, near Seattle, WA
This is a location with plenty of engaging single track to enjoy. If you ride along the Forest Service roads, you’ll spot the signs. The Preston RR trail comes highly recommended – if you’re ready for a 3.5-mile uphill trek. They’ve also recently opened their first downhill MTB trail, and it’s a double-black-diamond! A good bike rack for an SUV will allow you to carry multiple bikes and secure them properly until the destination.
To ride the Tiger Mountain Trail (TMT), begin at the trailhead and follow the trail along the grade of the former railroad. After about 5.3 miles, the trail will narrow along the side of Carkin’s Cliff. Continue about one mile beyond the sign of Hobart Gap until you reach a powerline; you’ll follow this powerline north-east until a sign indicates the continuance of the TMT to the left. Following the TMT from this point will take you past Paul’s Cove, Custer’s Bridge, Larry’s Crossing, and numerous other local landmarks.
Trail Ride in Washington #3: Duthie Hill Mountain Bike Park, Issaquah, WA
This 136-acre forested area includes 8 miles of trails and a well developed park that is perfect if you want to hone your skills. Bank turns, jumps, freeriding, and flowlines have all been built up for your enjoyment. If you get cold feet on the technical stuff, there’s a 6-mile single track running south to I-90, plus 2 mile of free ride trails.
To access the park from I-90 east, take Exit 18 (Highlands Drive). Stay to the left on Highlands Drive for 2.1 miles. Turn right onto Issaquah-Fall City Road and follow for 2 miles. Take a right at the Endeavor Elementary School and look for the parking lot on the left.
Recommended Washington Bike Rides on Roads
Road Bike Ride in Washington #1: Lopez Island – Lopez, WA
It’s been called “Bicyclists’ Island” for a good reason. Everywhere you swivel your head on Lopez Island, you’ll see cyclists. The island seems purpose-built for cyclists, with ample signage and local inns complete with bike storage facilities. It’s a place for a fun day of riding, photo ops, and relatively flat terrain.
The entire island is essentially a giant web of bike routes, but be mindful of motorists as you’ll be sharing the road. If you’re looking for a gentle option, riding the main road around Lopez Island itself is a good option. It’s not flat, but the hills can be conquered in a day’s ride. And if you are taking your family, it’s essential to look for a really good platform bike rack before going to a destination like this.
Road Bike Ride in Washington #2: Skagit River Delta, Padilla Bay, and Samish Valley, Mount Vernon, WA
This route is comprised of low-traffic farm roads that traverse the Skagit River delta, Padilla Bay, and Samish Valley. If you’re looking for a relatively quiet ride through flat terrain, this trek through farmland and the Skagit Wildlife Area might be just the ticket. The roads are highly-rated on this route, but be advised that some riders report intense headwinds during the second half of the long route.
Begin at the Mount Vernon Estate and Garden on 235. Head north-east on the George Washington Memorial Parkway and follow the route north along the Potomac. You’ll follow this road north, across 95, until you reach Theodore Roosevelt Island.
Road Bike Ride in Washington #3: The Daffodil Cruise – Orting, WA
This ride gives you options. Starting at the town of Orting, WA, you have your pick of short, long, and century rides. The south route is a 20-mile loop that will take you through Kapowsin; continue through to Ohop Valley and you have a 50-mile total stretch. For the longer ride, there’s a 50-mile loop north of the starting point in Orting. It’s called The Daffodil Cruise because of the acres of blooming farmland along the way, so expect plenty of flowers in the springtime! The terrain on this ride is mostly rolling hills, but there’s a steep incline on the final leg heading back into Orting.
We hope you find a great bike ride to do in Washington! If there are any others we should know about, please let us know in the comments.
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