Looking for a great day trip that will allow you to see some of the most beautiful scenery in the Pacific Northwest? Well do I have a ride for you…Regardless of where you are coming from, this is a “must do” ride for you.
Get to the 410…
Regardless of your starting location, find your way to Hwy 410 which begins where State Highway 512, State Highway 167 cross right between Sumner Washington and Puyallup Washington. Once you find the 512, head East through Sumner and up the hill to Bonney Lake. As recently as 1965, Bonney Lake only had a population of just under 1300 people…boy have the times changed, Bonney Lake now has a population of over 17,000 and continues to grow. That’s more people than we want to see when we are going for a ride to escape the crowds, so keep moving East towards Buckley. We discussed the highlights of Buckley in a previous article about riding from Puyallup to Cumberland. If your interested, you can read it here.
Continue through Buckley and then on through Enumclaw. Just as you are leaving town you will be passing the Enumclaw golf course on the right. If you have found a way to carry your clubs with you while you’re out for a ride; first, share that secret with me and second feel free to stop and play a round of golf!
Finally, some scenic riding…
Once you get past the golf course, the scenery begins to change. You are leaving behind the buildings, stop lights, and most of the dangerous drivers in their cages. You will be riding through areas owned by Weyerhauser, and the beauty of that is they are a lumber company, they don’t have a bunch of buildings polluting your views. What you have in front of you now is about 40 miles of lush greenery and two lane road.
For much of this ride you will be next to the White River. As the river comes in and out of view along the roadway you will notice the temperature changes that occur, the closer you are, the cooler it gets. During the hot summer this is a welcomed perk of taking this scenic ride.
If you are in need of some gas or maybe you just want to stretch out your legs for a few, the Greenwater General Store will be a welcomed site. You can grab some fuel for you and your bike at the same time.
A short distance up the road you will see the Mount Rainer View Point…DO NOT waste your time. There are no bathrooms and certainly no views! The trees have long since grown up and blocked the view from this vantage point, but fear not, you will see the beauty of Mount Rainer very soon.
It’s time to head up to Skookum Falls and check out the views! This is one of the most stunning things you will find along Highway 410. This is a great place to stop and look up at the beautiful waterfall and take in all of the incredible sights and sounds that Skookum Falls has to offer. Unlike the Mount Rainier View Point, this is an amazing pull off that is certainly worth stopping for.
Continuing up the road towards Mount Rainier you will pass various campgrounds and pullouts that you may want to stop at. Many of these locations present wonderful photo opportunities if you would like to get a few pictures in along the way. I’m not getting any younger so I can only speak for myself when i say that pictures help me to remember the specifics of the day.
If you are feeling ambitious, you can stop and hike the Crystal Peak Trail-head. If you make it up, you will be rewarded with spectacular views of Mount Rainier.
Just up the road from the Crystal Peak Trail-head the road will fork. Stay to the right and you are almost there. Continue to ride through the heavily forested roads and take in all of the spender that you can, you just can’t get this type of beauty in the city! As you progress on Sunrise park road you will pass the rangers station, but very little else.
The road begins to have a few more twists and turns that you have seen in a while. Again, if you feel like taking a hike, Owyhigh lakes trail and Summerland Trail will be on the left. As for me, i’m ready to see what i came for by this point!
Through a few more twists and turns and you will be crossing over the White River Bridge. This is an incredible stone bridge built in 1929. It is as beautiful today as it was back then.
Through a couple of hairpin turns and you are there. Stop and take in all of the splendor of this incredible world we live in.
Have you done this ride? Do you have a ride suggestion? I would love to hear from you, please leave a comment below.
Until next time, keep the shiny side up!