We rode the new Ship Canal Trail from east to west for the first time and it’s only slightly less awesome than I’d envisioned. The switchbacks to cross the train tracks seem excessive, but I mostly don’t like that it spits the rider out on Emerson, which isn’t very bike friendly and is just steep enough to make me complain. I guess this technically isn’t part of the new trail, but having never crossed the Ballard Bridge, it’s all new to me. However, I was able to get to the waterfront without having to walk through the locks or navigate the busy downtown streets. And there’s a blue train engine–nothing could be more exciting than that.
We were soon back on familiar ground–Gilman Ave W–and saw five airplane fuselages in the train yard as we made our way to the waterfront. I cheated and took the elevator at pier 66 to get up towards Pike Place Market, though with a three-minute wait for a guy to finish cleaning the elevator, a pair of pedicabs beat us from the waterfront to the market. So not quicker, but easier. Next time maybe I’ll let the pedicabs pace me up the hill.
Our purpose of visiting Pike Place Market was to see Santa and he was awesome. Still coming to terms with how much the big kid lurves Santa. I’m not a Christmas celebrator myself. The little kid wasn’t so sure about him, but didn’t mind sitting on his lap for a moment while his brother talked about trains and I took a picture.
We rode home our usual way, mostly on the sidewalks to avoid the heavy traffic. I’d prefer a route that doesn’t involve sidewalks, but we saw our usual batch of exciting stuff–we rode under a moving monorail train and paused to admire Chalky the Pig’s holiday wreath at Harrison and Westlake (Rachel the Pig at the market has one, too):
At South Lake Union Park we saw the Christmas Ships lighting up, which is the only way we’ll see them with the no-nappers’ early bedtimes.
I’d had enough excitement for the day, but it seemed like a fine day to make good on my promise to visit the Dewdrops sculpture at Wallingford and 34th. It wasn’t bad riding up Wallingford, but I think I’ll stick to Densmore, favorite hill of Spokespeople. I haven’t compared the grades with the Veloroutes Hill Caluculator yet, but I think Densmore is a little easier. I’ve completely given up on my shorter and steeper route of 4th-to-40th-to-Latona since it’s just no fun walking half a block (or more on extra tired days).