This summer, Evergreen Motorcycle Attorneys is taking you on a virtual tour through some of the best motorcycle routes in Washington. Previously, we’ve visited Chuckanut Drive and Spirit Lake Highway. For the third stop on our Summer Motorcycle Tour, we chose the Cascade Mountain Loop.
This collection of highways leads you through 400 miles of Washington’s unique landscape, starting near the Puget Sound and leading east to the Cascade Mountain Range. This ride can be done in a couple days or stretched out into a longer trip, making it perfect for a late summer getaway.
Sights Through the Cascade Mountain Loop
There are nine different regions included in the Cascade Mountain Loop, and you can start your trip in whichever one is the most convenient. Whidbey Island is the westernmost segment of the trip, encompassing a large portion of the Puget Sound before turning west toward the Cascades. Throughout these islands you will find plenty of places to stop and explore the coast, such as Oak Harbor.
To the north, the Cascade Mountain Loop assumes Highway 20 through the Skagit Valley. On clear days, these lush lowlands offer a gorgeous view of Mount Baker in the distance, which you can see from the historic district of Burlington, or further along from Baker Lake. Three hours from Seattle near Baker Lake is the North Cascades National park, encompassing 300 glacial peaks and endless camping and hiking opportunities.
Both Ross Lake and Lake Chelan recreation area frame the remainder of Washington State Road 20, before the road becomes Highway 193 and leads to Methow Valley. South of here, you will find the Columbia River valley and Lake Chelan valley. Lake Chelan spans fifty miles, with beautiful lake shores and beach access. Lake Chelan State Park is 127 acres and offers camping, as well as fishing, swimming and hiking. If you prefer to stay at a hotel, the Chelan Valley Inn is in a great location right on the water.
Visiting Scenic Washington Towns Along the Way
Further along the loop is Leavenworth, a Bavarian town at the foothills of the Cascades, with great lodging and dining options. While Leavenworth is a popular Washington tourist destination in the winter, there is still plenty to do in the summer. Visit the Leavenworth Nutcracker Museum to browse a large collection of nutcrackers. Stop by one of the many wineries in Leavenworth, such as D’Vinery Eagle Creek Winery or Ryan Patrick Vineyards, for a wine tasting.
Two places you should try in Leavenworth are the Munchen Haus and Andreas Keller Restaurant. Both of these establishments offer unique German-inspired dining experiences and have great reviews.
As the loop begins to head westward again, you come across many smaller, rustic towns. The towns of Skykomish and Sultan offer a variety of outdoor activities, and the Iron Goat Trail and trail tunnels can be found near Stevens Pass. Be sure to purchase a map or print one out before your trip, and bring some warm clothes just in case.
If you plan to travel through the Cascade Mountain Loop this summer, let us know. Feel free to share your photos with us on Facebook or Instagram. Don’t forget to be safe out there and enjoy the ride!