Orting, Wa. Rails to trails...
Results 1 to 9 of 9
  1. #1
    Fat guy in little coat.
    Reputation: Geddy5's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Posts
    80

    Orting, Wa. Rails to trails...

    I am new to road biking - just bought a 2005 Cannondale R900. For my first longish ride (remember, I'm new) was the 20 mile (round trip) paved Rails To Trails path in Orting, Wa. I went early in the morning (the weather has been spectacular) and only saw maybe 6 people the whole time. The trail follows the Carbon river for most of the way, and on some parts of it you get a real sense that you are in the middle of the forest - a coyote passed in front of me at one point. At the trail head, just before the city of Orting, there is a place where you can park your car and there are bathrooms and water. Traveling into Orting is somewhat inconvenient with several stop signs to impede your progress, but it isn't that bad since the town itself is pretty quaint and park like (though it's growing.) Just before you leave the city there is a bike shop (oddly enough), and then it's nothing but pedaling heaven - smooth, new cement and trees and foliage. Don't get me wrong there are roads near by, but at that time of day there was next to no traffic noise and it was very peacefull. The trail for right now ends at the South Prairie trail head, which had bathrooms but frustratingly no water that I could find, and construction is now underway to connect to the Buckley (North East). The ultimate goal, as I understand it, is to pave a way from Puyallup to Mt. Raineer National Park. I don't know how long of a ride what will be, but I can't wait to try it! The main downside to this path is the speed limit of 10mph, but at 9am on a weekday morning - with so few people around, I didn't keep it; I averaged 16mph for the entire ride, and reached a top speed of 26mph when I saw a couple with an unleashed dog at the bottom of a small hill. It was only when I passed them that I noticed that the dog only had three legs. I might be new and out of shape... but really ;)
    At the end of a most excellent ride - back at the Orting Trail Head, I met another cyclist who was about to begin the loop that I'd just finished. We exchanged pleasantries, and I told him about the coyote and the three legged dog and how wonderful my ride had been. He eyed my new bike and said, "Wow, that's a sweet ride. Has that got Campy stuff on it?" I nodded in the affirmitive, gazing fondly at my biggest purchase in years. "Ah," he said, laughingly, "One of those Campy Snobs!" Me, having no earthly idea what he was talking about, just laughed along with him and told him that the 20 mile ride that I had just completed accounted for over half the total miles on the bike.
    I plan to ride this trail alot while I get used to my new bike, and I can't wait until it expands all the way to Mt. Raineer.

    Anyone else ridden this trail? Thoughts?

  2. #2
    Roll Out Jeremy
    Reputation: Fordy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Posts
    1,785

    Wink Sounds like a great time...

    You'll know you graduated when you reach Paradise on your way around the mountain.

  3. #3

    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Posts
    253
    I've been on this trail quite a few times. You will also know that you really made it when you are confident enough to step outside your front door and ride to wherever you want to go by using the local roads. If you do a google search, the Vancouver, WA Cycling Club has a good link to rules of the road for cyclists.

    I would highly recommend you link up with the Tacoma Wheelmen for group rides when you are ready. They usually ride to some appointed lunch stop and then return. Their website is http://www.twbc.org There is a link on the website for at least 5-8 rides a week this time of year.

    Good luck and ride safe.

  4. #4
    Fat guy in little coat.
    Reputation: Geddy5's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Posts
    80

    Cool

    I've driven several times to and around Paradise, and right now I can't imagine Graduating to something of that magnitude. Trail or no trail, that would be one heck of a climb! But in all honesty...I would try it after I got used to my bike and used to riding for hours at a time.
    I'm planning on going on some club rides eventually, and the lbs where I bought my bike also recommended the Tacoma Wheelmen for group rides. I would really feel a lot better riding with a large herd of people when going on longer street rides, as it would be a lot easier for the cars to see us. The main reason I don't use my bike for my commute to work (it's only 26 miles round trip) is that I'm pretty hesitant to ride the direct route that's available to me. It's a road (West Valley Highway) that parallels the freeway (167), which isn't too congested when I'm going to work (9:30 pm), but is pretty bad when I'm leaving work (6:00 am.) Not to mention I'm pretty tired after working 8 hours. But, I know when the wheather starts getting really nice, when it's completely light out when I leave work, I'll be tempted.
    Thanks for the links, Spinnerman, I'll definitely check out the tips for safe street riding. Right now I'm still getting use to the clipless pedals, and have made a couple of embarrassing fumbles when trying to stop at a light...with plenty of spectators of course!
    So, I'm glad that the trail is there in Orting; it's a safe place for me to practice with my pedals and get my lungs and legs up to snuff until I'm comfortable enough to join my bretheren on the open road. I plan to complete a Century sometime this summer...even if it's just doing the Orting loop 5 times; just to say I did it.
    If you're ever riding the loop and you see a guy with a bright red and silver Cannondale - a guy who wears shorts over his bibs (they're so reavealing!) - give me a holler!

  5. #5

    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Posts
    253
    Quote Originally Posted by Geddy5
    I've driven several times to and around Paradise, and right now I can't imagine Graduating to something of that magnitude. Trail or no trail, that would be one heck of a climb! But in all honesty...I would try it after I got used to my bike and used to riding for hours at a time.
    I'm planning on going on some club rides eventually, and the lbs where I bought my bike also recommended the Tacoma Wheelmen for group rides. I would really feel a lot better riding with a large herd of people when going on longer street rides, as it would be a lot easier for the cars to see us. The main reason I don't use my bike for my commute to work (it's only 26 miles round trip) is that I'm pretty hesitant to ride the direct route that's available to me. It's a road (West Valley Highway) that parallels the freeway (167), which isn't too congested when I'm going to work (9:30 pm), but is pretty bad when I'm leaving work (6:00 am.) Not to mention I'm pretty tired after working 8 hours. But, I know when the wheather starts getting really nice, when it's completely light out when I leave work, I'll be tempted.
    Thanks for the links, Spinnerman, I'll definitely check out the tips for safe street riding. Right now I'm still getting use to the clipless pedals, and have made a couple of embarrassing fumbles when trying to stop at a light...with plenty of spectators of course!
    So, I'm glad that the trail is there in Orting; it's a safe place for me to practice with my pedals and get my lungs and legs up to snuff until I'm comfortable enough to join my bretheren on the open road. I plan to complete a Century sometime this summer...even if it's just doing the Orting loop 5 times; just to say I did it.
    If you're ever riding the loop and you see a guy with a bright red and silver Cannondale - a guy who wears shorts over his bibs (they're so reavealing!) - give me a holler!
    It is good news to me that another cyclist is out riding. As your skills improve so will your confidence about venturing out into traffic. Statistics show that bike paths are approximately 2.5 times more dangerous than riding on the roads. Even when riding by yourself as long as you know the rules of the road and ride a little defensively around traffic.

    Check the route goimg out East Main from Puyaalup past the Sumner Library and then cross the river at the first bridge to your left. Sorry, don't know the name of the road, but I do know the route. Follow the road and take a left again and you will be riding north on the East Side of 167 on 4 lane smooth road with a divider. The road will eventually curve to your left, follow it over the railroad tracks and take the next right and this road will take you north into Algona. I don't know how far north you work, but there isn't a lot of traffic. Try it sometime.

    What I would recommend is you try Pt. Defiance park on Saturday when half of the five mile drive is closed to traffic to get a feel for road riding. You can park just after you enter the park from Pearl Street and ride the five mile loop as many times as you desire and if you need a shot of coffee, you can ride up the Antique and refuel and turn back into the park. There is a bathroom in the park by the first children's play area and tucked away to your left by Fort Nisqually. And yes you can ride your bike past the closed gate. Just give ashout out well in advance of passing pedestrians by loudly saying 'on your left when passing.' That way if you startle them, they will have time to see you and settle down well before you pass them. I usually let them know I am comming about 50 yards away or more depending on my speed.

    You would probably be more likely to see me at Pt Defiance unless the group I ride with goes out your way toward orting or Mt. Rainier. Once you have your climbing legs, the climb to Paradise is something that is very rewarding and not that difficult if you learn to ride within your own abilties.

    If at some point in the future you are out for a ride with the Tacoma Wheelmen and decide you want something a little faster, there are about three fast recreational riding groups that racers often show up to with Old Town in the winter (probably where you purchased your Cannondale), Spoke and Sprocket in University Place (all year long on Saturday and Phil's in Federal Way.

    After that, there is racing ....maybe you'll see me at one of those too...

    Good Luck, Ride Safe and see you out there on the road.

  6. #6
    Fat guy in little coat.
    Reputation: Geddy5's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Posts
    80

    Wow, thanks...

    Quote Originally Posted by Spinnerman
    It is good news to me that another cyclist is out riding. As your skills improve so will your confidence about venturing out into traffic. Statistics show that bike paths are approximately 2.5 times more dangerous than riding on the roads. Even when riding by yourself as long as you know the rules of the road and ride a little defensively around traffic.

    Check the route goimg out East Main from Puyaalup past the Sumner Library and then cross the river at the first bridge to your left. Sorry, don't know the name of the road, but I do know the route. Follow the road and take a left again and you will be riding north on the East Side of 167 on 4 lane smooth road with a divider. The road will eventually curve to your left, follow it over the railroad tracks and take the next right and this road will take you north into Algona. I don't know how far north you work, but there isn't a lot of traffic. Try it sometime.

    What I would recommend is you try Pt. Defiance park on Saturday when half of the five mile drive is closed to traffic to get a feel for road riding. You can park just after you enter the park from Pearl Street and ride the five mile loop as many times as you desire and if you need a shot of coffee, you can ride up the Antique and refuel and turn back into the park. There is a bathroom in the park by the first children's play area and tucked away to your left by Fort Nisqually. And yes you can ride your bike past the closed gate. Just give ashout out well in advance of passing pedestrians by loudly saying 'on your left when passing.' That way if you startle them, they will have time to see you and settle down well before you pass them. I usually let them know I am comming about 50 yards away or more depending on my speed.

    You would probably be more likely to see me at Pt Defiance unless the group I ride with goes out your way toward orting or Mt. Rainier. Once you have your climbing legs, the climb to Paradise is something that is very rewarding and not that difficult if you learn to ride within your own abilties.

    If at some point in the future you are out for a ride with the Tacoma Wheelmen and decide you want something a little faster, there are about three fast recreational riding groups that racers often show up to with Old Town in the winter (probably where you purchased your Cannondale), Spoke and Sprocket in University Place (all year long on Saturday and Phil's in Federal Way.

    After that, there is racing ....maybe you'll see me at one of those too...

    Good Luck, Ride Safe and see you out there on the road.

    Thanks alot for all the information. For the life of me I can't understand why bike paths are more dangerous than roads...maybe because most people let there guard down knowing there's no cars, only to hit a pedestrian?

    I know where you are talking about going out from East Main towards Sumner - I live only about half a mile from where East Main Starts. But even more interesting is the Five Mile Loop. I didn't know they closed some of it on Saturdays. I will surely try it.

    As for my progress, I'm coming along better than I thought I would (I guess enthusiasm for the sport makes a big difference.) My first time riding the Orting path, I averaged 14mph. Five days later, I concentrated on going faster and I averaged 18. You have to keep in mind that for the first mile of this path, there are a lot of stops involved due to several intersecting city streets, and you can't really get going until you get out of Orting (and even then there are some stops along the way.). There was one point - coming up to a "hill", that I decided to use the Grade % on my computer ( something that I had thought was more of a "gee whiz" type of thing before I realized its training potential.) The hill was only about 50 yards long before leveling out (thus the above parenthesis on hill), and I didn't dip below 20mph. My computer indicated that the hill was an 8% grade. While I realize that this isn't all that fast for most of folks on this site, I was pretty happy. My year of mountain biking illustrated my potential as a good climber (it was the descents on rocky ground that scared me), so I think that once my aerobic capacity improves I'll be able to ride the Paradise route.

    You are right, I did buy my bike at Old Town, and I was very happy with the quality of service that I recieved there. Good guys. The fitting that they performed on me was more than I expected, it took quite awhile. However, having riden the bike a little bit, I'm thinking that the stem might be a little too long for me. During the fitting, the guy had me in the drops and said that I shouldn't be able to see the front wheel hub, and I didn't. But since I've been riding these last few weeks, I've noticed that I can see the hub behind the handle bars, and that my neck and back hurt a little bit after riding 20 miles. Since I've just began riding, I'm a little apprehensive about buying a shorter one, it could be that I'm just not used to the postition that my body's in while riding and I'll get used to it the more I ride.

    As for seeing you at the races...I have to admit that I've thougth about it! But I'm so new that I don't know anything about it. Do they actually close down the streets to traffic? Do you have to be on a team to race? The whole Crit thing sounds scary, not to mention hearing on this site, "don't race anything you can't afford to crash." Not happy words to say the least.

    Anyway, thanks for the info and the words of encouragment. I can't wait for the weather to get better!

  7. #7

    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Posts
    253
    Quote Originally Posted by Geddy5
    Thanks alot for all the information. For the life of me I can't understand why bike paths are more dangerous than roads...maybe because most people let there guard down knowing there's no cars, only to hit a pedestrian?

    I know where you are talking about going out from East Main towards Sumner - I live only about half a mile from where East Main Starts. But even more interesting is the Five Mile Loop. I didn't know they closed some of it on Saturdays. I will surely try it.

    As for my progress, I'm coming along better than I thought I would (I guess enthusiasm for the sport makes a big difference.) My first time riding the Orting path, I averaged 14mph. Five days later, I concentrated on going faster and I averaged 18. You have to keep in mind that for the first mile of this path, there are a lot of stops involved due to several intersecting city streets, and you can't really get going until you get out of Orting (and even then there are some stops along the way.). There was one point - coming up to a "hill", that I decided to use the Grade % on my computer ( something that I had thought was more of a "gee whiz" type of thing before I realized its training potential.) The hill was only about 50 yards long before leveling out (thus the above parenthesis on hill), and I didn't dip below 20mph. My computer indicated that the hill was an 8% grade. While I realize that this isn't all that fast for most of folks on this site, I was pretty happy. My year of mountain biking illustrated my potential as a good climber (it was the descents on rocky ground that scared me), so I think that once my aerobic capacity improves I'll be able to ride the Paradise route.

    You are right, I did buy my bike at Old Town, and I was very happy with the quality of service that I recieved there. Good guys. The fitting that they performed on me was more than I expected, it took quite awhile. However, having riden the bike a little bit, I'm thinking that the stem might be a little too long for me. During the fitting, the guy had me in the drops and said that I shouldn't be able to see the front wheel hub, and I didn't. But since I've been riding these last few weeks, I've noticed that I can see the hub behind the handle bars, and that my neck and back hurt a little bit after riding 20 miles. Since I've just began riding, I'm a little apprehensive about buying a shorter one, it could be that I'm just not used to the postition that my body's in while riding and I'll get used to it the more I ride.

    As for seeing you at the races...I have to admit that I've thougth about it! But I'm so new that I don't know anything about it. Do they actually close down the streets to traffic? Do you have to be on a team to race? The whole Crit thing sounds scary, not to mention hearing on this site, "don't race anything you can't afford to crash." Not happy words to say the least.

    Anyway, thanks for the info and the words of encouragment. I can't wait for the weather to get better!
    Sounds to me like you are plenty fast enough to get out with the Tacoma Wheelmen and ride. Stay at the back and about a bike length from your nearest rider as you start out. Look ahead of the person in front of you and don't use your breaks unless you are coming to a stop, and if you must, just feather them while keeping the pedals going.

    As far as bike fit, it sounds to me like a classic case of your body adjusting to riding. I wouldn't make any changes to the fit until you've got at least a good 3 months of riding and unless something is absolutely killing you. The only exception to this might be the saddle. People can usually tell pretty fast if a saddle is comfortable or if it is not. The more you ride, usually the firmer the saddle you will need.

    As far as crits go, yes they usually close the road or in places temporarily stop traffic as the racers come through. I don't race crits myself. I prefer road races and TT. Maybe in a year or two I will feel mentally ready for crits.

    Just to give you an idea, I race and I don't think I can recall the last time I ever did a ride by myself that averaged 18 mph (with starting and stopping etc). I probably average 25% hard (which could be a race, group ride or training ride with a couple of friends) 25% tempo and 50% easy. My easy pace on the rolling to flat roads where I live is about 15 mph. My tempo work is a steady 17 mph to 22 mph depending on terrain, wind and the course I choose for the day. Fast group rides, crusing along in the pace line I am not usually looking at the computer because I am paying attention to everything around and in front of me, but usually 20 to low 20's when it is my turn to pull (in the cold winter it might go down to 18 mph) when we are just doing easier mileage and the air is dense. We can kick it up to the mid to upper 20's when people are feeling frisky and it is not too uncommon that I have noticed when a Cat 1 or 2 guy is taking a strong pull that we were going along in the low 30's. Each day is diffferent. If it is a highly or a route filled with steep rollers, we will take it easy on the flats to recover and then it is everyone for themselves on the uphills as we go all out. Racing is all about pack riding skills and being able to sustain really hard fast efforts for short periods of time. I noticed in my last race with the Masters group that we were going 14mph into a head wind on some rollers because one team was blocking in a dangerous way. (But that is another thread) Next thing I knew we were clipping along in the high 30's and the pack was getting strung out and some guys at the back were getting dropped.

    The wheelmen are usually very social rides and it will gradually give you the ability to ride in groups, give you time to slowly decrease the space between you and someone in front of you and also you can observe riders so you know which ones you can trust to steer the pace line in a nice smooth line around obstacles and point out debris in the road and those that are squirely that you want to back off of when you find yourselves behind them because these are the riders that will half wheel the guy ir gal in front (overlap wheels which can potentially casue them to be taken down) so they might go down and take you out with them, those that take nice smooth lines around the corner and are able to set nice steady speeds (aren't causing a yo-yo affect to those behind them be speeding up and slowing down) and those riders that stop spinning which causes their bike to act like it is jumping backward. Those are just a few of the things to watch out for in a group.

    More tips and there are many good books out there that will give you advice on all of these issues. But, there is nothing like real world experience of actually seeing these things in action. Plus, many of these books will offer tips that you can use to go out and practice on your own so you can improve your skills and bring a good toolbox of skills with you on your group rides.

    For now, just ride your bike and you will come out for a group ride when you feel ready.

    As for bike paths, they are less safe for a variety of reasons, many of which are just the interaction of walkers, joggers, cyclists, roller bladers, etc. all on the same mix use path.

    Where I live they have the dreaded bicycle lane in the road. These are the worst invention for cyclists. All they do is collect glass and debris and make many drivers think that you are supposed to stay in these lanes. Plus they are on the right side of the road nearest drive ways and cross streets, which is another hazard. The safest place on almost all ossassions for a cyclist to be is visibly in the traffic lane apprximately where the right tire of the car or truck will travel down the road. This section of road will be swept clear of debris and as a cyclist, you are more visible in this area of the roadway. Then when cars are behind you, you can decide as the bicyclist when it would be safe based on the road and traffic conditions to move over some and allow cars to go by you in the same lane. Also by traveling in this section of the roadway, vehicles are less likely to attempt to do squeze by you because you have left too much room on your left. More often than not, you can just allow cars to move some into the oncoming lane (or the left lane if a two way street) to overtake you.

    Keep riding and

    Ride Safe.

  8. #8
    Fat guy in little coat.
    Reputation: Geddy5's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Posts
    80

    thanks again for the response...

    It blows me away that you've seen guys hitting 30mph, that seems out of reach for me right now. My fastest sprint (on the flat) has been about 24 or 25 mph, so just hitting 30 would be a pretty cool goal, but actually keeping that speed for any length of time is unthinkable, at least right now...I got a new training book so I'm sure that I'll be up there sooner or later
    So, when you race in a road race I wouldn't imagine that they are able to close down the road, right? If that's the case, it would seem strange to be racing while keeping an eye out for traffic!
    If the weather holds up I'll be hitting the 5 mile loop this weekend. Maybe I'll see you there - red/black/polished aluminum Cannondale R-900.
    Later.

  9. #9

    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Posts
    253
    The Cannondale R900 with Veloce 10 Speed is a great deal for the price. I have been mullin over getting one of these for racing purposes. Then I would have one bike for flatter to rolling hills racing, another for bigger climbs racing (Mt Baker Hill Climb) and recreational rides like RAMROD and Mt. Shasta, one for the club and flatter to rolling centuries and my commuter rain bike. If you see someone with an orange bike (all but one are various colors of orange or orange and black) give us a shout.

    Have fun riding and post how you are doing and if you have gone out for some club rides by the end of September.

    Ride Safe,

    S

Similar Threads

  1. Greasing rails
    By thegood in forum Components, Wrenching
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: 02-10-2005, 05:19 AM
  2. has anybody replaced saddle rails
    By terry in forum General Cycling Discussion
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 01-15-2005, 12:02 PM
  3. saddle w/ long rails?
    By turbomatic73 in forum Components, Wrenching
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: 11-19-2004, 07:12 PM
  4. Bent / broken rails
    By Bikecrazed in forum Components, Wrenching
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 11-12-2004, 05:07 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

THE SITE

ABOUT ROADBIKEREVIEW

VISIT US AT

© Copyright 2020 VerticalScope Inc. All rights reserved.