Review course map, profile, route description and course notes for Cannonball
Start - The ride starts near the west end of the I-90 bicycle/pedestrian tunnel in Seattle, which is at the
intersection of Martin Luther King Jr. Way and the I-90 bike trail. On-street parking is available
on Martin Luther King Jr. Way. The wide bike path on the I-90 bridge is well-lit and provides a
fitting way to start the ride that is associated with I-90.
The start time is 3:00 a.m., Saturday, June 25th, 2011.
Finish - The finish is at the Best Western (next to the Airway Express Inn). Go to the front desk to find the sign-in sheet and enter your name and the time you arrived!
|Cannonball Route Description|
|0.0||Start at the west entrance of the I-90 Bicycle/Pedestrian Tunnel. Take the bike path on the I-90 floating bridge.|
|2.45||Bike trail crosses West Mercer Way.|
|2.8||Bike trail forks — take left fork.|
|3.05||Left on North Mercer Way at stop light.|
|3.55||Left at stop light which is opposite a freeway off ramp (watch for oncoming traffic), followed closely by a right turn onto a trail that parallels the north edge of the freeway.|
|4.1||Stop sign; cross road.|
|4.5||The trail takes a jog left across North Mercer Way.|
|4.9||Take the bike path across the East Channel I-90 bridge.|
|5.4||Upon leaving the bridge path, take a left onto SE 34th St., followed by another left onto 108th Ave. SE, which passes under I-90 and curves to the left.|
|5.75||Take the bike path that starts near the end of the cul-de-sac.|
|6.0||Take a right over the bridge when the trail branches. This is the Mercer Slough Trail, which parallels I-90. It consists of uneven concrete slabs.|
|6.4||The Mercer Slough Trail takes an abrupt right turn at 118th Ave. SE, bringing you to the south side of I-90.|
|6.46||Take a left across 118th Ave. SE (also called Lake Washington Blvd.) and enter the bike trail that goes through the Factoria Interchange.|
|7.0||The bike trail ends at Richards Road. Cross Richards Road and continue up SE 36th St.|
|8.5||SE 36th curves to the right before intersection with 150th Ave. SE. Take a right onto 150th Ave. and go uphill. Get into the left turn lane just before the intersection with Newport Way.|
|8.8||Turn left onto SE Newport Way.|
|9.9||Straight on at stop sign (intersection with 164th Way SE).|
|11.1||Straight on at stop sign (intersection with West Lake Sammamish Parkway).|
|13.5||Cross SR 900 at the traffic light, still on Newport Way.|
|14.0||Take a right at the traffic light, still on Newport Way.|
|15.0||Take a left onto Sunset Way, which goes through downtown Issaquah (the street signs say Mt. Park Blvd. on the west side of this intersection and Sunset Way on the east side). Go through downtown Issaquah on Sunset. Cross Front St. at the traffic light.|
|16.1||Enter I-90 on the Sunset Way on-ramp. Continue on I-90 for 258 miles.|
|274||Take Exit 276 (Bicycles Must Exit sign), followed by a left on Grove, crossing I-90. At the next stop sign, take a left onto Geiger Blvd.|
|275||FINISH at the Best Western (next to the Airway Express Inn). Go to the front desk to find the sign-in sheet and enter your name and the time you arrived!|
Climbs: If you have only driven this route, you will find more climbing than you expected.
Among the climbs are High Point, Tiger Mountain (SR 18 summit), the climb out of North Bend,
Snoqualmie Pass, Indian John Hill, Elk Heights, Ryegrass Summit and the Columbia Gorge.
After you ascend the Gorge you will swear that there is a gradual incline all the way to the finish.
Shoulders: The state has been busy adding rumble strips to a lot of the I-90 shoulder in recent years. The width of the strip varies from county to county; in most areas it is fairly narrow, taking up no more than 1-3 feet out of an 8-10' shoulder (they are always placed next to the traffic lane). These leave plenty of good shoulder for cycling. However, one county on the east side has wide rumble strips that leave you about 2 feet of smooth shoulder - it's passable, but a jarring wake-up if you have to ride over the rumble strip to avoid some debris.
Flats: The shoulders are wide and have usually been swept by June, but they accumulate debris quickly. Steel-belted radial shards (tiny wires) are a common cause of flats on the other side of the mountains. Most people have at least one flat during the ride, and several people have had 4 or 5 or more. Sensible tire choices go a long way towards avoiding pinch flats, which are common due to pebbles kicked up by vehicles that pull off the shoulder.
Mile Markers: It is best not to look at these until you have passed marker 176 near Moses Lake, which signifies that you have less than a hundred miles to go. Note that your course mileage will be about 2 miles less than the I-90 mile markers.
Rest Areas: There are rest areas on I-90 as follows: Snoqualmie Summit (mile marker 53), Indian John Hill (mile marker 89); Ryegrass Summit (mile marker 126); Winchester Wasteway (mile marker 162); Schrag (mile marker 198); Sprague Lake (mile marker 242). You will find that these are all at the top of climbs.
The Vantage Bridge: The Columbia River bridge at Vantage has a narrow (2-foot) shoulder, but the sight lines for traffic coming downhill behind you are excellent. Compared to some bridges used by cycle commuters in the Seattle area, it's not that bad a crossing. Do not attempt to have your support vehicle follow you across the bridge. If you don't like bridges, you may meet your support driver in Vantage and be driven across the bridge.