Team name: Tour De PNW
A group of recent graduates celebrated the end of one chapter and the beginning of an exciting new one. Chasing after a lifelong dream of a road trip together, these action sports junkies went hiking, mountain biking, cliff jumping, exploring, and visiting with friends throughout Black Rock, Portland, Seattle, Surrey, Vancouver, and Sechult, British Columbia.
Participants: Kevin, Gabe, Connor
2018 Road trip details: Our plan is to travel from California, up the Pacific North West to Oregon, Washington, and Canada. Along the way, we plan on stopping at various bike parks and some of the most epic waterfalls. We chose this route and destination because Canada, Oregon, and Washington are known for some of the most insane waterfalls and mountain bike parks. We also have a lot of friends along this route and we'd love to connect with them!
Can't leave home without:
Kevin: A Watch
Gabe: Water bottle
Favorite tune to listen to on the open road:
Kevin: Habit By The Movement
Gabe: Free and Easy By Dierks Bentley
Connor: What I got By Sublime
Signature/go-to camp food:
Kevin: Coffee and coffee
Gabe: Barbecue Quesadilla
Connor: PB and J
"Best known for"/"claim to fame"/"trip role":
Kevin: The daredevil, the bad influence, and the cinematographer
Gabe: The networker, the foodie, and the photographer
Connor: The tech guru, the brorista, the videographer
A perfect trip would include these three items:
Kevin: Mountain bikes, Waterfalls, and snacks
Gabe: Buddies, bikes, and beer
Connor: Bikes, beer, and cameras
Recreate their trip
Recreate this Trip: Tour de PNW
The main goal of our Tour de PNW was to have a raw, and action-packed adventure. We decided that there would have to be a careful mixture of planning, and winging-it to experience adventure in its raw form.
We planned the destinations of our trip based on bits of advice we had picked up from fellow mountain bikers and adventurers in the past. At first, we wanted to completely wing it and see where the adventure took us. After some thought, we decided that we didn’t want to let the stress of finding a different place to sleep each night eat into our trip.
What we did plan:
The general plan was to go to Whistler. What made this trip unique was our mentality that the journey was as important as the destination. We focused planning on the general locations to visit, and where we would be sleeping. This created a basic route for us to follow to ensure that we packed in all of the Pacific Northwest destinations we’ve been dreaming about.
What we didn’t plan:
We consciously didn’t plan portions of the trip because we knew that we would learn about local spots and recommendations on the road, and didn’t want to be tied down to a schedule. That would contradict the freedom of life on the road.
Mount Shasta, CA
Following the wedding, we all met up at Kevin’s house in Mount Shasta. We spent the day outfitting Kevin’s Tacoma with the Tepui gear, and other various overland parts.
We stopped in Bend for the day on our way to Mount Hood. The stop started with an amazing local coffee shop, Spoken Moto, and ate fantastic food from the on-site food trucks. We took extra time to top off the batteries on our electronics, because we knew power would soon become a scarce resource.
Mount Hood, OR
We camped at Trillium Lake, which is located at the base of Mount Hood and has an amazing view of the mountain. We spent a lot of time hammocking, shooting photos of the mountain, and riding our mountain bikes. On our second day, we rode Sandy Ridge Trail System, an amazing trail system near the base of Mount Hood.
Bellingham was one of our favorite stops on the way to Whistler. It had the best mountain bike trails, and the most lush forests. Although we dealt with some rain at this stop, it only made the trails better!
Sechelt was a very unique stop. We arrived from a ferry from Vancouver at 10:30pm, and drove to our camping spot, arriving around 11:15pm. The Pacific Northwest decided to rear its ugly head, and we experienced extreme rain. Thus, we were forced to set up camp in the pouring rain at night. This wasn’t a pleasant experience, but hey, “it builds character”. We always wanted to go to Coast Gravity Park (in Sechelt), but didn’t really know what to expect. Our experience was amazing overall. Coast Gravity Park had a very small and grassroots feel. It totally embodied the North Shore riding experience. There were only about 15 people on the mountain that day (including us), which made it a very personal experience. Plus, the trails were unreal!
Whistler was amazing. The bike park contained the best trails we’d ever ridden. The park’s terrain is stepped up a notch from other bike parks in terms of size, but it was built so perfectly that we were able to get quite a bit out of our comfort zone on bigger jumps, drops, and rock features. Unfortunately, Kevin took a gnarly crash on one of his runs, which put him out for the next day. He was eager to get back on the mountain as soon as possible, and decided to tough through the pain on our last day.
Random campsite, WA
We didn’t have a plan after Whistler. This was intentional, because we wanted to feel the essence of traveling without a plan. So we drove from Whistler down to a random campsite in Southern Washington.
Mount Shasta, CA
The finish line! We had endured 14 days, and 1,787 miles of adventure. We celebrated the success of our journey with our favorite local beer, Sierra Nevada, on Mount Shasta.
Days on the road: 14
We couldn’t have done it without the Tepui gear…
Since we were in the Pacific Northwest, rain preparation was key. We experienced heavy downpour on multiple nights. Our Tepui Kukenam Sky kept us completely dry from the rain. If it weren’t for the Tepui’s elevation off the ground, our tent would have been flooded and we would have been soaked. The mattress in the tent was so comfortable, and it stayed so dark with the window shades closed, that we all actually ended up sleeping in as late as we would have in our beds at home. We were also fortunate to have our awning, which provided us with shade during the day, and kept our bikes dry during rainy nights. Our Recommendation to Future Travelers Prepare for the unknown. The beautiful thing about adventure is the freedom of not sticking to the plan. Adventure is your chance to break out of the status quo, and experience places and people in their true form.