My first motorcycle ride of the season was an overnight trip to Seaside, Oregon. I headed to the coast on May 9th to enjoy some sun and warm temperatures at my favorite “local” beach town.
This riding season began almost three weeks later than last year when I stopped in Seaside on Day 1 of my 2018 Western Vistas Tour. I’ve been waiting for a break in the weather and two consecutive warm days at the coast. My patience was finally rewarded.
Total trip distance: 375 miles
In choosing a route, I decided to begin and end the trip to the coast with a ferry ride to (and from) Bremerton, WA. This allowed me to skip I-5 where there is currently a good deal of road construction in Tacoma.
The ride started by catching the 7:35am ferry. I was pulling up to the front of the line for priority boarding when I was given permission to board. I never even put my feet down until I was parked on the boat. Good timing!
I headed to Belfair from Bremerton, following Hwy 3, where I stopped for a latte at Brewed Awakening. Good coffee!
For the trip down, I chose to take Hwy 106 along the bottom of Hood Canal.
Heading southwest along Hwy 106, you’re riding along the water’s edge. You’ll pass through a few small residential communities and the speed limit is more limited, but it is less congested and more scenic than other options.
Great suggestion, Carson!
I stopped in Raymond, WA for a quick breakfast sandwich before continuing south along Hwy 101.
In South Bend, just a few minutes further south, I noticed a fish and chips food vendor along the side of the road. The place seemed packed! The timing on my return visit would be better so I put it on my bucket list.
In the meantime, the temperatures were already in the mid-70s and the beach was calling, so I continued south. I chose to take Hwy 4 and Hwy 104 into Astoria.
I would stay on Hwy 101 on the return trip. It is the more scenic route.
I arrived at 1pm and my room was ready. I called the day before to request an early check-in and they were able to accommodate me.
It was 82 at the beach! Lot’s of people were out enjoying the day.
There was a puppeteer along the Promenade,
father’s out pushing baby strollers,
and people enjoying the beautiful day.
I bounced back and forth between the hotel’s pool, spa and sauna, and the beach throughout the day and into the evening.
I grabbed a burrito and some beans and rice for dinner at the Guadalajara Taco Shop across the street from the hotel on North Holladay.
It was still warm during sunset, but I had one additional layer on. The wind was calmer but the air a bit hazy.
Many readers may know that I moved to Seattle from Santa Cruz, CA. It is a beach town, as well. I really find my motorcycle adventures to Seaside to have a “coming home” component to them. I encourage that by staying at the same hotel and often stopping into the same shops for food, and such.
After breakfast and another swim in the pool, I packed up the bike and was ready to leave by 10am.
On my return home, I chose Hwy 101 through the Willapa National Wildlife Refuge. This route is very much more interesting for motorcycles than Hwy 104 and Hwy 4. Take it for sure if you’re only visiting the area once!
I stopped shortly before noon in South Bend, WA to try the fish and chips.
It was a little early to have a big lunch, so Linda, the owner of Linda’s Fish and Chips, made me a three piece cod lunch with just a few fries and some coleslaw and charged me less. That was the perfect solution and the fish was very good.
On my return to Bremerton, I would take Hwy 3 instead of Hwy 106. It too is scenic, but a little more congested than Hwy 106, especially in and near Shelton.
I stopped again in Belfair at the Brewed Awakening, this time for an espresso soft-serve – just right for a hot afternoon. They get great reviews and I recommend it. Shout out to Jessica!
I caught the 3pm ferry back to Seattle and was home shortly after 4pm.
My next motorcycle adventure will begin in a few weeks when I head north to Vancouver Island and Desolation Sound.
I’m living vicariously ! How many miles on your bike now ?
Hey Mark, hope things are going well. I have over 75K miles on the bike. It’s been a great travel companion.
Looks absolutely wonderful! Thanks for sharing. Let me know when I can host you on any of your trips. Thanks for your hospitality when I was visiting. Blessings to you!
Enjoyed following along on the trip through maps, photos and short descriptions.
Sounds like a great prelude to your trip north.