Well, in about 2 hours we officially disembark on our 2010 great motorcycle ride. This is the 2nd Annual version of our ride, which includes four of my closest friends and required cowboy camping (sleeping bag only). Needless to say – I am excited.
Our journey has been described as a “Great Washington Loop” and can essentially be any looping motion around a portion of the State of Washington. Last year, the inaugural ride involved a ride along Washington’s State Highway 101, starting in Seattle, heading west to Port Angeles, out to Forks, through the Hoh Rain Forest, down to Aberdeen and back up to Seattle. So, the goal is to never touch the same road twice – a loop.
This year’s version had to include an epic brewery visit. It just had to. Along with me will be Mark Leavens, a contributor here at Beer Blotter and former assistant brewer for the cult classic, Gilligan’s Brewing. This gave me a little bit of beer support to let the group know that we would not be riding, sans brewery stop.
There was really only one place in Washington that I have yet to visit – the Columbia Gorge. Wouldn’t you know it? There is one brewery I have died to visit since moving here over 3 years ago – Walking Man Brewing in the Columbia Gorge.
So, we decided on this loop, South to Mt. St. Helens, further South to the Columbia Gorge, East to Yakima Valley, and North back through Mt. Rainier. You can check out our route by following this link.
Walking Man is a damn good brewer, offering such classics as Black Cherry Stout (our editor’s favorite beer), Homo Erectus Imperial IPA, Jaywalker Imperial Stout and Old Stumblefoot Barleywine.
Each of Walking Man’s beers are hand-crafted, meticulously refined and dang it, delicious. Their beer is probably the best received on Rate Beer, of any Washington brewer. On top of that, Walking Man offers a brewpub with some pretty impressive food options. We will stop by tomorrow afternoon and check it out.
After that, I hope to make a stop in Yakima to find some Yakima Craft Brewing ales on tap. I tend to remember a place downtown on 3rd Street that poured many of their ales. But, this one is for you readers – anyone know where to find their beer on tap? Please let me know, by sending a comment below.
The trip is going to be one hell of a ride. The weather is looking up at 85-90 the entire time with zero rain in sight (crossed fingers). If you are free this weekend, it would be a great time to get out and do a beer trip!
Please let us know if you have any personal favorite spots along our route! Send a comment below or an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Thanks for reading!