Question for Pacific N.W. Riders...

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#1
Hi all, my wife and I moved away from our original home of Washington State 17 years ago when I joined the Air Force.

I had been riding dirt bikes all my life up to that point and have continued to do so. Now, we've been living in the southwest for the last ten years.

Anyways, let me get to the point...
I'm coming to the point in my military career where I'm going to retire and we're considering moving back up to the northwest to be closer to family.

One big thing sticks out in my mind that is keeping me from wanting to move back...the rain! I remember always wearing my riding gear and having to wash tons of clay off after every ride. Yuck!

I've been spoiled by our deserts and mountains down here to say the least.
I remember we used to head north toward Olympia (I'm from Centralia) and we'd ride were it was more of a gravelly base instead of the typical clay near home. This gravel let lots of the standing water drain out of the soil and it wasnt always so dang sloppy.

My question is...where do you folks go riding up there in the winter time? I know there are a bunch of you on this board and I'd like to hear from you. It just may help me feel reassured that Im not nuts for moving back up that way. :)

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Vincent   "He who dies with the most toys wins!"
99 WR400F
84 V65 Magna
56 Triumph 650(Hillclimber)
92 TW200
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JAJ

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#2
Hey Vincent. I guess its ok for you to come back since you already have roots here :)

I ride all over the west side during the winter and unfortunately they are all very wet... Personally I love it. I love riding in these nasty conditions! FUN, FUN, FUN!

You know I deal with that statement alot, "It's always so rainy in Seattle". You know I don’t necessarily agree. Yes we have our far share of rain, but by no means is it too much. We're GREEN! Green, takes alot of water! :)

I've travel all over the country and I can say without hesitation. Washington is the most beautiful, spectacular, outdoor friendly, nice place to live in the country.

Good luck with your decision!

JJ

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JJ - "Family 'O' Yamaha"
99 WR400 (KTM 520EXC/MXC?)
00 TTR125L
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fishhead

die you sycophant !
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#3
For winter riding Tahauya (Belfair) is hard to beat. Its got good drainage,good variety of trails. Capitol Forest (Olympia) is good when it dries out a bit after June. Cle Elum offers a couple of areas the Teanaway and Taneum which also have winter snomobileing.The Lake Wenatchee and Nachess area do also. Farther east there are dunes at Moses Lake Check out NMAoffroad.org If you have been gone 17 years you may not recognize the place now.

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#4
Depends on where in the state you move, not alot of ridding area's close to the seattle metro area. Most area's are in central/eastern washington. Check out this website the info is kinda old but still holds true www.nmaoffroad.org this is the northwest motorcycle assiocation website. Hey JAJ you wouldn't of happened to of been up at reiters pit like 2 weeks ago with like a big trailer of bikes with a few kids & wife? the bikes you have listed in your tag line is what they had of course parked up under the power lines.

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firecracker22

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#5
If you prefer desert riding conditions, my hometown of Wenatchee offers a LOT of riding areas. Not a lot of snow lately--I was riding in early January in Crescent Bar, near Quincy. There's lots of year round riding in Moses Lake and Juniper Dunes areas if you like sand. North of Spokane there is tons of gorgeous scenery and great technical trails in the Little Pend Oreille and Batey Bould areas. I'm new to the western side of the state so I'm not the expert over here.

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endoquest

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#6
Vincent, all of your responses have mentioned Washington but not Oregon. The Tillamook State Forest west of Portland is not very far from Centralia, maybe less than two hours. There are hundreds of miles of gnarly, technical trails there that only get snowed out in the heart of the winter. The OMRA has quite a few races and enduros staging out of there every year. Don't leave out Gifford Pinchot/Mt. Adams area. There are also a few riding areas down here in Eugene and Oakridge.

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President,ETRA.
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JAJ

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#7
Nope MXP, wasn't me. I've been there most Sundays lately but with my buddies.

I can't seem to get my wife or my little girl out unless is 75 degrees :). My boy will ride any time but he needs a new bike. I'm shopping for a KTM 65 as we speak.

I'll see ya out there!

JJ

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JJ - "Family 'O' Yamaha"
99 WR400 (KTM 520EXC/MXC?)
00 TTR125L
99 PW80 (KTM 65?)
99 PW50 (KTM 50JR?)
 
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#8
Hey Endoqwest,
I used to ride all over the Gifford Pinchot with my dad and his buddies. We used to ride Bishop Ridge, Blue Lake trail, etc...had a lot of great times.

The only Oregon riding I really ever did was in the dunes area between Florence all the way down to Coos Bay. We used to go in the winter when the crowds were thinner and the dunes firm and damp. I sure do miss that!!

I appreciate everyones responses...hope to see more. I guess I'm looking for someone to talk me into moving back up that way ;) It's hard to beat all this sunshine I've gotten used to.
 
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#9
I agree with Endoqwest - the Tillamook Forest is great riding. Almost all of my riding is done in the Trask. It is usually a mud bath in the winter, but I've gotten used to it. Some of the lower elevations have had almost no snow at all this year, and there is usually somewhere without snow, unless it is snowed in at sea level as well (almost never). My WR426 is beating the crap out of me on some of these tight trails, and I would sometimes like to be in more desert like areas, but trade? Not a chance!

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#10
JAJ: Well maybe i'll see ya up at reiters this weekend it should be decent weather. I'll be park up by the power lines, i usually get there by about 11am. I drive a red ford ranger just look for my '01 CR #439 hopefully i'll see ya up there.

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#11
Vincent,
Have you thought about Idaho? There is a high desert county in the SW, Owyhee. Its about 150 x 100, miles that is. It has two paved roads and about 4 that are dirt. Lots of room to ride and thaws early. Then you have the mountains. Everything from easy riding like the rolling hill of Colorado to serious rocks. Trees everywhere in the mountains.

Jerry

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Old guy who putts around on a '00 WR400F behind the KX_kid
 
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#13
Hey D.B.Dad,
I've been to Boise a few times and I have to agree with you. I have often considered moving there one of these days. Three major rivers running through town with good fishing, a nearby national forest and good weather...hmmm.
Yeah, its mighty attractive looking.
Never been riding there yet...one of these days I'll make a point of it.
 

MACE

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#14
Hey Vincent, thankyou for serving our country!

I'm an Oregon native. I was exiled to Southern California for a few years. I'm so happy to be back in the land of roots, ruts, rocks and mud!

The key to wet weather riding is to just bomb through the first big puddle and get it over with. Immediately get soaked through and through so you don't have to worry about staying dry. Now stay on the super tight trails - the ones so tight all you can see is your own back fender. Keep working hard and you won't get cold.

I love Tahuya in the winter. The whoops fill with water. If you hit them fast you just hydro across. It's a cool feeling. Hydro-whoops can be kind of weird in turns though - no rudder. It's all fun (except the road transit sections where those without Moose jackets turn Reflex Blue (even the KTM riders).

Vincent, I'm sure we would be better off as a state if you came back. Seriously, you need to consider if you have been warped as you dehydrated and what about the kids? They will probably freak if all they've known is tumble weeds and beef jerkey skinned adults.
 
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#15
For great riding year around check out China hat 20 miles east of bend on highway 20. Almost 500 miles of marked mapped trails. The east fort rock area gets some snow in the winter but just across the Highway to the north is North Millican valley where you'll find 189 miles of open desert riding. The china hat/East fort rock area is a mix of open desert and tree hugging. For oregon riding check this site www.oohva.org its got it all. Happy trails

kx 125

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