Iron Horse Trail Ride

Our local group went on another ride on the Iron Horse Trail which is a rails to trails project in the Cascade Mountains. This is the Coker fun ride that we had for UNICON 11 in 2002 for those who remember. We went the additional 6 or so miles to Rattlesnake Lake this time so we logged 20 some miles. Some geek with a speedometer might post our numbers.

The riders were John Childs, Steve DeKoekkoek, Tom Blackwood, and myself on Cokers and Tom Jackson on a mountain bike. We met at the easternmost residence, the Blackwoods, in Issaquah, and ferried up to the Rattlesnake terminus and then on up to Hyak at the beginning of the trail. We swooped through the pitch-black, ice-cold, 2.5 mile tunnel and then into a glorius downhill ride for about 3.5 hours. We plan to go again in late September or early October when Irene Genelin joins our crew and at that time we will post many photographs of her back from a great distance.

The only photo I want to post is the Demon Rider, an evil one-wheeler with horns growing from his helmet and saddle. He is being herded back into his dark lair by Tom Jackson on the MB.


The rest of the 25 photos that I took are HERE! The first one is a good, clear group shot.

Marie Blackwood was kind enough to feed us coffee, juice, fruit, and coffee cake on the way out and veggies, sandwiches, beer, juice, and cookies on the way back. Now I just need to get someone to pedal for me.

Thanks, Tom and Marie. And thanks to Carol DeK for ferrying us around.

Re: Iron Horse Trail Ride

Tom Blackwood’s devil helmet was too funny. Should one of us have told him that the straps on his helmet light mount were sticking up like devil horns?

That helmet explains the sense of evil and dread (or was that dreadful evil?) I felt for a brief moment during the ride.

Re: Iron Horse Trail Ride

That would be devil-geek. Stats: 22.31 miles, 150 minutes pedaling time, average speed 8.9. Keep in mind I was always in last place (the better to prod the others forward), so the average speed at the front of the pack probably broke 9 mph.

Those are not horns…I struck a deal with Beelzebub of Balance.

PS: My legs are not a bit tired or sore. I’m typing this with my toes, and plan on doing the trail uphill and backwards tomorrow.

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Postscript: despite being at the back of the pack, my top speed according to my Schwinn computer (with great retro styling) was 25.4 mph. I apparently achieved this speed while taking a restroom break, which surprised me as I’ve never been great at multi-tasking. That’s why I try to keep to only one wheel.

My photos of the ride are in my gallery

Riding the Iron Horse trail is the most fun that you can legally have on a Coker. Just bring a good light for the tunnel or you’ll not enjoy the best part of the ride. If you live in the Seattle area that trail is reason enough to get a Coker even if you only ride the Coker there once and then sell it. It’s a dirt trail, but the slight 2 percent downgrade makes the riding almost effortless. At the end of the ride the legs don’t know (and don’t care) that you’ve just done over 20 miles on a unicycle.

And thanks again to Marie Blackwood for the pre-ride and post-ride food. Yum!

For those who are curious there is a trail map and trail description of the Iron Horse Trail on my web site at

Yuck! Don’t touch the creosote coated pillars

Creosote makes a great sun sceen. My thumb is not sun burned at all.

The ride is great. The tunnel, the trestles, and the constant sound of the Detroit ocean coming from I-90 below make it a one of a kind ride.

Tom, we saw you going 25.4 mph. You had to go bad!

For once I took a minority of the pics. Here is one that wasn’t covered by Greg or John. Note JC’s classic pose:

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Here’s a buddy of mine that I mountain bike with…check out his home-made devil helmet… :slight_smile: