Insider Guide: Seattle

Our travel editors' must-see places to stay, eat, and play around Emerald City

Explore Snoqualmie Valley

Bring a bike and tour the scenic backroads of these picturesque country towns

Biking Snoqualmie

Take to the roads around Snoqualmie Valley­—but leave the car behind. Instead, hop on your bike for a 22- or 33-mile tour of the area.

José Mandojana

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Washington blackberries
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Sno Falls
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Snoqualmie coffee spot
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  • Snoqualmie map

    Getting to Snoqualmie

    From Seattle, it’s 30 minutes. Take I-90 east to exit 25, then left at State 18/Snoqualmie Pkwy. Go right at State 202/Railroad Ave. S.E., into town.

  • Snoqualmie Valley bike routes

    Find a map and detailed directions for both the easy and difficult Snoqualmie bike routes here.

Download our free map: Snoqualmie Valley bike route and directions

Why go in summer: For a scenic country ride with blackberries and burgers along the way.

Drive time: Half-hour from Seattle

Main valley hubs: Fall City, super-cute Snoqualmie, and happening North Bend.

What brings 1.5 million tourists a year? Raging Snoqualmie Falls (which, few realize, are almost 100 feet longer than Niagara).

What brings locals? Leafy roads, Snoqualmie River, and Mt. Si, the 4,130-foot slab of hike-able rock that anchors the valley and resembles the face of a man staring up at the sky.

Car of choice: A Subaru Outback crowned with a bike rack.

Dress code: Keens and Croakies, spandex and bike helmets.

Sugar rush: The handmade almond toffee crunch from Chew Chew Cafe & Candy (8102 Railroad Ave. S.E., Snoqualmie; 425/292-9516). 

Bike fest for everyone: The annual Tour de Peaks (ride Aug 15, $35; festival at Mt. Si Aug 13–15, free), with four different route lengths.

 

Our summer bike route, 2 ways 

Snoqualmie Valley is made for cycling. For an easy, flat 22-mile ride, park in Fall City (6 miles northwest of Snoqualmie, on State 202), then stick to country roads en route to Remlinger Farms and back.

The more difficult route, if you don’t mind a climb, is all 33 miles from Snoqualmie and back, with a beautiful detour along S.E. Fish Hatchery Road. Download map and detailed directions here.

Kick off with a scone 

Start at Koko Beans Coffee House ($; 8010 Railroad Ave. S.E., Snoqualmie; 425/888-0259), a locals’ hangout, for a latte and still-warm cinnamon scone baked by owner Bethany Wright.

Turn your hands purple 

You’ll pedal past barns and meadows, through woods and along the river, with knockout views of the Cascade foothills. Be sure to pull off the road for juicy bites of summer: Right now, ripe blackberries are almost everywhere along the route; W. Snoqualmie River Road S.E. is especially chock-full.

Stretch out your legs on the farm 

Family-owned Remlinger Farms is your turnaround point—and an ideal spot for a breather, with barnyard animals; a bakery and restaurant ($); and fresh peaches, apricots, and blueberries piled on old wagon carts, to buy for the ride back. 32610 N.E. 32nd St., Carnation; 425/333-4135.

Après burgers and beers 

Back in Snoqualmie, hit a 1902 community hall turned restaurant. The Woodman Lodge Steakhouse & Saloon has pressed tin ceilings, old Douglas fir floors, and caribou heads hanging from the walls. Yes, steaks are the star, but try the Big Tatonka (buffalo) burger, smothered in smoked gouda and served with hand-cut fries. $$$; 38601 S.E. King St.; 425/888-4441.

Make it a weekend

Looking directly over Sno Falls, Salish Lodge & Spa couldn’t be more perfectly placed. Enjoy the view from the window-walled restaurant—or from one of the 89 recently renovated rooms, with jetted tubs for two, wood-burning fireplaces, and access to the steam room, sauna, and soaking pools. If that doesn’t do it, treat your sore muscles to the Salish Spa. Rooms from $279

Sophie Egan|From the August 2010 Issue

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