Jeremy Kampp on the Snoqualmie River

You get the sense that Washington State alone contains a lifetime of riding. Road. Trail. Everything in between. Thousands and thousands of miles of it. Here, Seven Ambassador Jeremy Kampp shares another little slice of his home state with us:

Seven months and over forty inches of rain might have been a dream as I awake to a spectacular 5:20am sunrise in May.  A weather window with the temperature in the 70’s leaves me thinking about an adventure combining riding and fishing rather than riding and layering against the dampness.

Have I told you about the enormous brown trout that I hooked but got away? Oh yeah, that fishing story has been told before.  This story involves my Mudhoney SL bike and tenkara fly rod to explore along the middle fork of the Snoqualmie River and the fishing holes yet unseen.

Scattered white cumulus clouds sail above the snowy peaks. Deciduous trees reach for space between the towering evergreens with their apical buds of light green yielding little.  At the trailhead I can hear the river rapids running over the cobbles before I can see the green flow.  Water, food and rod on my back I accelerate up the road on my bike, ecstatic to be riding in the sun.  The thrill of riding is timeless and the freedom to roam is cherished.

Through the forest on a trail and over a suspension bridge reveals a swollen snowmelt river.  Sandbars to fish from won’t be available for two more months.   I fish eddies on the main river, make a note of holes that will be prime for trout in 1-2 months, and then seek smaller tributary creeks to fish.

Riding a winding singletrack trail with blue butterflies flitting near the drying mud I cross several streams along the way.  Rock hopping is easy. Wading is cold and sometimes necessary.  In the end the fish swim free, I am energized by the day of exploration and the dream of the next trip forms as I ride down the long tree shaded road towards home.

 

 

Jeremy Kampp in the Sol Duc Valley

Jeremy Kampp lives and rides in the Pacific Northwest. He rides an Evergreen S adventure bike and a Mudhoney SL race bike. This is the first of what we hope will be many of his shared adventures.

Fog swirls through the cedar trees in the fading light of dusk as frogs croak somewhere near the flowing river in the darkness beyond.  I’m in Olympic National Park nestled in the Sol Duc valley anticipating the next days mixed terrain ride. An early spring adventure to mark the return of soft light giving way to vibrant sunshine that had retreated to the South for the winter.

Warmed against the 34F morning with eggs, bagel and coffee I pedal over a bridge spanning the Sol Duc river.  A sleepy two-lane road winds along the river descending under the canopy of moss and trees of the temperate rainforest.  Although I’m vaguely aware that this thrilling winding and rolling descent will be a climb on my return I laugh it off with a whoop and pedal harder.

Black tarmac with a double yellow stripe yields to brown squishy soil littered with decayed leaves, yellow green lichen and derailleur grabbing broken branches.   I pedal on the shoulder of Lake Crescent.  With a 40c tire on my Evergreen S the varied terrain is a great match. Only the creek crossings, downed trees, and a rock slide prompt me to hike.

Time passes on the trail among ancient trees and flowing waters. Salt crystals on my cheeks remind me of the summer rides to come.  For now the gentle spring rain begins to needle down upon my helmet and drip off the brim of my hat.  My ride is complete except for the rest I take falling back into the soft moss bed below a tree in the forest.