On September 13-14, 2014, we’ll have a Bicycle Quarterly Meeting in Packwood, WA. The “meeting” is a simple get-together of cyclotourists, not an organized event. Perhaps “un-meeting” would be a better term: there is no registration, no fee, and no services will be provided. Several of us will be there on that given date, and anyone can join us on rides into the surrounding mountains. We’ll have a few route sheets for a number of rides, both on gravel and on pavement, covering between about 50 and 100 miles each. (No sag wagons, obviously.)
The Bicycle Quarterly Meeting is inspired by Vélocio’s “meetings” of the 1920s. Vélocio simply put a note with the date and location in his magazine, Le Cycliste, and anybody could show up. Vélocio rode to these meetings from Saint-Etienne – which meant that he didn’t always make it, especially if the winds were unfavorable or his progress was slowed by other circumstances. Whether the maitre was there or not, everybody had a good time.
Our meeting this year will be in Packwood, a little town nestled in a deep valley within the Cascade Mountains, between Mount Rainier and Mount Adams. You will have the opportunity to ride on some of the roads you’ve read about in Bicycle Quarterly, including Skate Creek Road (below) and parts of the course for the Volcano High Pass Super Randonnée.
You’ll need to make your own travel arrangements. Packwood has a few small hotels. The Hotel Packwood (360.494.5431) is especially recommended. There is a campground (www.packwoodrv.com) as well. The surrounding national forests allow camping as well.
To remain in the spirit of Vélocio’s meetings, we invite you to travel to the meeting by bike and train, rather than by car. The nearest train station is Centralia, WA. From there, it is a 127 mostly flat kilometers (71 miles) to Packwood. We hope to see you there.
More details will follow – start location and time for the ride, and maybe an informal get-together that night at the Packwood pizza place. (Unfortunately, the dining options don’t match the scenery.) It’ll be fun!