Iron Horse Trail: Ellensburg to Cle Elum

Getting ready for Dirty Kanza, Path Less Pedaled rode the Iron Horse from Ellensburg to Cle Elum and shared their edit.

That’s a fav section of ours too, including the two tunnels. I’m spending more and more time on the Iron Horse; especially, after the Lake Olallie Trail opened up.

On the weekend, starting from the trailhead Rattlesnake, the trail is crowded. In the summer, tour companies will take cyclist through the first tunnel, but after that we’ve ridden all day and not seen anyone else.

The Iron Horse (AKA John Wayne) is as unique as it is beautiful. It’s a rails to trails, sure but one that was made into a state park and you can traverse Snoqualmie Pass—main highway across the mounts, dividing the state between east and west—by bike.

Looks like Path Less Pedaled had as much fun as we do whenever we ride it. Last time, we rode until we found snow. And have been ticking off sections of the full 287 miles.

Mike McGuffin rode all of it and few years ago and documented the adventure in Issue 05 of our magazine.

The next twenty miles of trail pass through the Yakima Military Training Center. After a few rough detours, and some soft sand we began the ten mile descent into the Columbia gorge. The rail trestle spanning the Columbia at Beverly is blocked with chain link and razor wire.

Iron Horse Stories

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