I like John Kramer’s Bikenfest 200k. He changes it up a bit every October. This year (on the 2nd), it started at the Heritage Park-and-Ride near White Salmon (on the Washington side of the Hood River Bridge).
Unfortunately, I was already running late when I missed the turn onto the bridge from Hwy 84. (Confusing signage due to construction.) So after driving a few extra miles to Mosier and back, I started the 200k about 20 minutes after everyone else.
The route headed East on Hwy 14, where, after a few miles, I found Nat Beagley walking along the side of the road looking for a pedal. Hmmm. The roadside was doing an excellent job of hiding this fallen-off bike part.
Onwards, the route headed up Old Hwy 8 and used Syncline Winery (one of my favorites!) as its first contrôle. (How cool was that?) Then back to Hwy 14, I missed the turn out of Lyle towards Centerville, and mistakenly rode Hwy 142 up the Klickitat River instead. Unfortunately, I didn’t realize this until I was over 20 miles up the road. I was ready to abandon (and head straight to Glenwood) when I saw a sign that said 11 miles to Goldendale. “Hmmm,” I thought. “If I hustle, I can still make it before the contrôle closes.” And that's just what I did, arriving just as the last of the other riders were leaving. With three extra bonus miles cuz of my mistake, I called John to let him know where I was, then continued the journey towards Glenwood.
I rode some of the final leg with Alaskan Bill Estes and his son Theodore Eugenis (who lives here in Oregon), and reached the finish a little before Lynne and Susan. Lynne was particularly enthusiastic at the end, exclaiming, “it’s still light!”
Kramer said I may be the only one who’s ridden all four Bikenfest 200’s. A little research seems to have born that out.
Pictures are here on Flickr.