A ride on the Washington Iron Horse Trail and State Park

We got the thrift store fat tire bikes out last Monday and started September with a ride on the Iron Horse Trail, starting from the Rattlesnake Lake trailhead and turning around at the Alice Creek Campground, for a roughly 20 mile round trip.

The Iron Horse Trail is a Washington State Park, following the Chicago-Milwaukee-St. Paul-Pacific Railroad. Starting at Cedar Falls near North Bend, Washington, it continues for 110 miles through the Cascade mountains to the Columbia River near Vantage, Washington.

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A panorama from the trestle. I-90 is hidden in the tree below.

 

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We are standing on one of several trestles on the trail. A courteous passing cyclist offered to take our photo together.
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This is a good example of the trail surface condition and width. The gravel is a bit loose for our 32c commuter tires. It is much more comfortable and stable on the 1.5-1.9 tires on our hybrid fat-tire bikes.
The campground at Alice Creek. There are several of these small campsites along the trail with several tent pads, picnic tables and pit toilet.
The campground at Alice Creek. There are several of these small campsites along the trail with several tent pads, picnic tables and pit toilet.

We averaged 6-7 MPH on the way out. I thought it was just the fat tires and the loose gravel slowing us down, although I did notice the folk headed the other way were passing us at a good clip. It turns out we made quite a climb on the gentle slope of the old rail bed. We covered the return leg in one third the time, sailing along with little effort. We wished for long pants and more insulation– it was a little chilly on the way down.