Category Archives: Training

Hurricane Ridge and the Olympic Peninsula

Tacoma Narrow bridge 260 miles later, much more windy this time across.Tacoma Narrow bridge 260 miles later, much more windy this time across.

Olympic Discovery Trail on my way to Port Angeles and the bottom of the Hurricane Ridge climb.Olympic Discovery Trail on my way to Port Angeles and the Hurricane Ridge climb.

We are up in Tacoma, Washington visiting family for Thanksgiving, so yesterday I rode from Tacoma up through the Kitsap Peninsula onto the Olympic Peninsula, attempted to climb Hurricane Ridge but only made it halfway before running into snow and ice on the roads, and then rode all the way back to Tacoma – a 260 mile adventure that started in the dry upper 20s degF at 1am and ended 20 hours later at 9pm with the last 8 hours riding in rainy mid 30s degF. I crossed the Tacoma Narrows bridge twice, but both times at night so I still haven’t seen it in the daytime. At 1am on my way out, everything was perfectly calm and very cold. On the way back in, it was quite windy pushing my bike sideways on the bridge and very wet.

In between the beginning and the end, I made all kinds of discoveries that matched and even exceeded my expectations for riding in the Pacific Northwest. It was quite dark riding across the Tacoma Narrows bridge, north through the Kitsap Peninsula, and crossing the Canal Bridge onto the Olympic Peninsula. The roads were almost entirely deserted until I made it to WA-3, WA-104, and US-101 where I started to pick up quite a bit of truck traffic presumably heading towards Port Townsend and Port Angeles.
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Everesting Clingman’s Dome

4th time at the top of Clingman's Dome. One more to go! #everesting

A photo posted by Brian Toone (@kartoone76) on

Panoramic photo from the Clingman's Dome tower overlook panning from northwest to the southeast with Mt Leconte prominent in the center and the Gatlinburg / Pigeon Forge area to its left.Panoramic photo from the Clingman’s Dome tower panning from northwest to the southeast with Mt Leconte prominent in the center and the Gatlinburg / Pigeon Forge area to its left.

Looking back down the steep path to the Clingman's Dome parking lot at the end of my 4th repeat.Looking back down the steep path to the Clingman’s Dome parking lot on my 4th repeat.

Quick Summary

Distance: 218.6 miles
Total ascent: 29,547 feet
Moving time: 17 hours, 10 minutes
Elapsed time: 20 hours, 47 minutes
Avg temp: 34 degF
Strava segment: Little River Rd to Clingman’s Dome Tower Correct Elevation Gain

It took nearly 21 hours, over 6 hours longer than I was anticipating as a worst case scenario, but I climbed to the highest point in Tennessee five times plus a sixth partial lap to reach the elevation of Mount Everest. It was quite the adventure … read on to hear all the details!

Raised relief map zoomed to Clingman's DomeRaised relief map zoomed to Clingman’s Dome.

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