Need a great ride and a tasty burger? The right combination for you might just be a quick ride over to Yakima. This ride will give you the opportunity to see some of the most beautiful scenery that the Pacific Northwest has to offer and you will conclude at Miner Burger in Yakima, Washington where they have some giant hamburgers and great tasting milkshakes.
On the road again…
As usual, we will be departing from Puyallup, Washington which means i have to ride through PURGATORY again…for those that are unaware, that is the real name of Meridian (the 161) as far as i am concerned! But no worries, soon we are out of that mess and on our way to see some incredible scenery and enjoy a great hamburger.
I must warn you, there are a lot of things to see along the way and you can easily lose track of time. If you have a tight time frame to follow, skip the sights and just grab the burger!!
Northwest Trek is a wildlife park located just outside of Graham. This place could take up an entire day on it’s own, so if you stop, be aware of the time.
You can walk through the park and observe the animals much like a zoo or you can ride the tram. The tram ride will take you through acres of woodlands and wetlands where you will get the opportunity to see a variety of animals including buffalo, moose, and big horn sheep.
While this is probably something that you would want to set an entire day aside for, it was worth mentioning.
Onward we go…
As we continue down the 161 we are now headed towards Elbe. First we will be passing through Eatonville and then we hit the gentle twists and turns in the road as we ride through the rural roads enjoying the natural beauty. The road will come to a “T” at Alder Lake, this might be a good time to stop and take a couple of pictures of this amazing body of water.
Now that we are done with the pictures, we will hang a left and continue riding next to this incredible lake into the tiny little town of Elbe.
Here we can grab some gas and check out the old rail cars or swing into the Railroad museum. Some of the decommissioned rail cars have been converted into a restaurant and others into a motel. Other than that, not much to see in Elbe, let’s keep moving!
Let’s go to Morton!
Just as you leave Elbe, you will need to hang a right to stay on Highway 7 and cross the Nisqually River. Sit back, relax, and enjoy this scenic ride. While there is not a lot to call out as fun things to stop and do, the views speak for themselves as you wind your way through the country setting.
As you come into Morton, be sure to follow the speed limit…they enjoy writing tickets there! Highway 7 will “T” at Highway 12. You should probably gas up here before we continue up to Packwood.
Now that we have full tanks, we will hang a left on Highway 12 and continue on our way.
Up the road a ways is Packwood, Washington. Their claim to fame is a city wide yard sale that is held 2 times a year. On both Memorial Day and Labor Day weekends, there are thousands of yard sales throughout the little town. Most people will have their stuff for sale right along Highway 12 as you are coming into town.
There are some good deals to be had if you have the time to walk around and do some haggling. This is something else that I like to set aside the entire day for, so mark the calendar for Packwood on Labor Day!
My stomach is starting to growl…
As we pull out of Packwood and continue to climb in elevation, it might get a little chilly depending on the time of year. Hopefully you brought all the gear with you so that you can stay warm in the colder moments of this ride. That said, as we come down the mountain into Yakima, it will be getting hot really fast so be prepared to pull over and shed some clothing!
You will again hit a “T” in the road when the 12 meets the 410. Take a right and follow it through Naches and into Yakima. When the road again “T’s”, take a left onto Washington Ave and a right onto south 1st Street in just a couple of miles. Miners Burger will be on the Left.
Order yourself a burger and some fries, have a seat outside, and think back on the incredible ride that you just took to get here.
Now that you have a full belly, you have to think about how you want to get back home… I would suggest that you take the 410 back, but i’ll save that for another day…
Have you done this ride? Do you have a ride suggestion? I would love to hear from you, please leave a comment below.
Until then, enjoy the ride and keep the shiny side up!