After a restful night serenaded by the creek, we arose at 6:15 am and packed up. Breakfast number one consisted of a granola cookie. Breakfast number two had to wait for 14 miles when we arrived in Winthrop. The Three Fingered Jack Saloon filled us up. Our 8-mile bike ride to Twisp followed the Methow River valley. It looked to have a flow similar to that of the Colorado River at Grand Junction.
When Betsy bought cheese and crackers for lunch, a local chap mentioned that our route over Loup-Loup Pass to Okanagon was closed by a mud slide. We initiated plan B. We were to turn southeast on Hwy 153 for 33 miles to Petaras, then turn north on US Hwy 97 for another 33 miles to Okanagon. Our relatively short 56 mile day turned into a 91 mile day!
We continued down along the Methow River, initially past irrigated pastures, then past dry hillsides (see photo). After about 20 miles we rode past fruit orchards on sloping benches above the river. At Peteras we bought a cold drink and ate lunch at a park next to the broad, languid Columbia River. We got back on the bike on US Hwy 97, first along the Columbia, then along the Okanagon River. There were fruit orchards galore! Away from irrigation, the hill sides sported dry sagebrush shrub land with a grassy understory.
We arrived in Okanagon at 5 pm: hot, sweaty, hungry, and thirsty. We checked into the Blue Mountain Motel- at best a 1 star establishment. But we got clean. A while ago, we arranged to meet here with our friends Chuck and Nancy whom we’ve known since grad school days in the 1980s. They treated us to a delicious dinner at the Bread Line Restaurant in nearby Omak, plus we played with their pup Casey. It was a delightful way to end a long, tiring day.