Not What I Intended

So, I had a whole logging road route planned out for today, it had the potential to be quite epic.  HOWEVER, I screwed up and didn’t write down the name of one of the roads I wanted to turn onto from Scoggins Valley Road.  I knew all the logging roads, wrote down the mileage to key points for some turns, and should have been all set.  Too bad I turned about 3/4 of a mile early and end up on Nelson Rd and not Stepien Rd.  Total amateur mistake.  Especially considering how much map browsing I did this past week.  Grrrrrrrr.

RLT once again

Anyways, the ride proved to  be very fun and difficult.  I had some stellar views of the Cascades and have now been able to add another ride to the repertoire.

It was very foggy when I left home.  It definitely amazes me sometimes how thick it can be here in the valley, and how long it can stick around too.  As soon as I got onto Old Route 47, and out towards Plum Hill Winery though, things really started to clear up.

Just past Plum Hill Winery

As I was going counterclockwise around Hagg Lake, I had in my head that the road I wanted to take wasn’t too far in.  I passed Herr, which I knew wasn’t it, and I got to Nelson, followed it up until a timber gate and second guessed myself.  I went back down to the main paved road, to Tanner Creek Rd, and totally knew that this was wrong.  Had I gone about 1/2 mile more, I would have hit the correct road, but I was just thinking “Nelson has to be it”.

I headed back up Nelson and continued on past the logging gate.  Climbed up a very steep road and into a clearing.  The fog was still very much in the valley too. Though Mt. Hood was RIGHT there in your face.

Mt Hood from Nelson Rd.

At this point I knew I wasn’t on the original planned route, but after studying the map all week, I knew this was going to be a good choice and had a rough idea where it would pop me out anyways.  So with the decision made, I just kept going.

Lots of gravel today

The timber companies really  build some pretty sweet roads.  I also appreciate the chance to use them when they are not actively logging.  No cars, no stop lights, no worries!

Trifecta! Rainier, St. Helens and Adams

I came to a cell tower about 5 miles in, but still had a crap signal so couldn’t really double check myself with google maps or anything.  all the side logging roads were titled NL and a #.  For Nelson.  Just beyond the cell tower was a sign for Roderick Rd which is the road I wanted.

I am very glad I did not come up this road!  In less than 6 minutes, I dropped almost 1600′.  From about 1900′ to 325′, in 2.5 miles.  Several nice tight switchbacks thrown in for good measure too.  Nice test of the brakes!

This popped me out onto Route 8 which is also known as Gales Creek Rd.  So while I didn’t come out where I had originally intended, I still came out on the road I needed.  From here it was a slog back home.  The legs protesting at every little rise.  Needless to say, I was glad to get home and get some food, take a shower and sit on the couch for a bit.

I’ll be back out and hit the correct road.  I need to get in this particular route I had planned.  Just has to be another day now.

Thanks for reading,


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