Distance: 52 miles
Starting Location: Trout Lake, WA
Catchphrase: “Maybe, just maybe, the most awesome ride in the Gorge.”
This ride is nothing short of awesome. Really. Seriously. How can you not like blacktop forest roads with minimal traffic? How can you not like old-growth trees. And waterfalls? And babbling brooks and rushing streams? The roads usually open up mid-June, but call the Mt. Adams ranger station to see if the 23, 90, and 88 road are clear of snow and downed trees.
Some advice: bring a third water bottle, iodine tablets, and plenty to eat, because this ride takes you to the middle of nowhere. There are a couple of gravel sections, so be prepared with 2 tubes, a patch kit and a pump.
Sound intimidating? Ride this as a group ride. The Mt. Adams Country Bike Tour is the way to go. You can do this ride, the BZ-Glenwood ride, or combine them for 100 miles.
Now. The ride description. Park at the Trout Lake School, a mile or so before the town of Trout Lake, or find a spot in Trout Lake. Mileage points are from the store in Trout Lake.
Follow the main road past the store. At 1.2 miles, veer left onto Forest Road 23 toward Randle. At this point, you’ll pedal a series of rolling hills, culminating in a long, sunny climb with stellar views of Mt. Adams. That’s 2000′ of climbing out of the way.
After this, the road winds through the forest, past several streams and a very lovely waterfall. At 20.25 miles, take a left on Forest Road 90. Descend. Enjoy the pavement. You’re going to hit about 200 yards of gravel once you’re on the flats. Don’t worry. It’ll be over soon.
At 27.4 miles, take a left on Forest Road 88. Climb. Climb Climb more. Climb through a couple of short gravel sections. That’s another 1100′ of climbing.
Then you’ll hit some beautiful smooth blacktop, mostly flat, before you hit the descent to Trout Lake. Finish on 5 miles of flat road and get a huckleberry milkshake at the store.
0.0 Head north
1.2 Veer left on NF-23
20.25 Veer left onto NF-90
27.4 Turn left onto NF-88
52 Drink huckleberry milkshake