Author: Sean McDermott

Scenic route through Skagit County fields to Whidbey Island airfields

Scenic roads are fun to take in by on your own, but they are also fun in a group from time to time. I ventured out on a group ride with a few fellow Suzuki V-Strom riders this past weekend. The ride was organized through Stromtroopers.com. In all, 10 riders converged upon Old Strokers Benchrace Café […]

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Mount Baker Highway to Artist Point – A Grand View of Mount Baker Volcano

Mount Baker, known as Kulshan to the local tribal communities, is second only to Mount Saint Helens as the most thermally active volcano in the Cascade Range. Mount Baker’s summit soars to 10,781 feet, making it the third highest mountain in Washington State. The area is so rugged that the North Cascades Range, to which […]

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Book Review: Sound Rider Guide to Motorcycling through Western Washington

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Importance of Environmental Awareness for Motorcycle Riders

This video shows two very close calls on the part of the motorcyclist. Both instances occur in real-time during this 55 second video. Was it luck, training, environmental awareness or something else that saved the rider’s hide? The video illustrates the dangers that motorcyclists face on the road with progentra. We are completely vulnerable and virtually […]

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Clean the Winter Blues Away with Original Bike Spirits

The Pacific Northwest allows year-round riding. The rainy season, however, makes me so depressed that I had to go overtime with my favorite CBD oil, and my motorcycle adds a very heavy layer of a special kind of dirt to a bike. It is a mixture of dirt, oil, road grime and who-knows-what. Dual-sport and […]

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Best New Product Innovation of 2013

Announcing the best new motorcycle product innovation of 2013. The Aerostich crew have truly outdone themselves on this one. Take one über safe Aerostich Roadcrafter, shrink it to “mini-me” size, add magnetic tank holds and put a baby in it. Now you have the Aerostich Magnetic Baby Onsie. How easy is it to use this innovative […]

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Let’s Ride Exhibit and Presentation

 The Pacific Northwest has a rich history of motorcycling. Did you know that the United Parcel Service (UPS) was born out of a motorcycle parcel service that started in Washington State? The Washington State History Museum kicked off 2013 with the “Let’s Ride! Motorcycling the Northwest” exhibit that runs from January 26 through June 23, […]

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Okanogan Motorcycle Adventure

Day 1: Rustic Washington Okanogan Country June gloom has been in full effect here in Western Washington State. In need of a motorcycle adventure and vitamin D, Beasley pup and I loaded up on the bike with some camping gear for a trip to find some sun. The rain increased intensity as we climbed up […]

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Skagit Valley Fields, Fidalgo Island Views and Aptly Named Deception Pass

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Lake Cavanaugh Road in the Heart of Skagit County Logging and Scenic Beauty

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The Spiral Highway, Idaho’s Motorcycle Gem

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Product Review: Fly Racing Trekker Dual Sport Helmet

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DIY learning applied to high-risk situations such as learning to ride a motorcycle.

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Product Review: AltRider Skid Plate and Crash Bars

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Suzuki Kind of Guy

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Bucolic Mosquito Lake Road off Highway 9

Skagit and Whatcom counties border Canada to the north, North Cascade Mountains to the east, and Puget Sound with the San Juan Islands— viewable from coastal roads — to the west. This makes the area particularly scenic.               There are several roads that every motorcyclist and sports car driver know […]

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In Search of a Dirt Road with a Mount Baker View

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Warehouse Motorcycle Racing

Group of motorcycle riders join weekly for debauchery in an empty warehouse. The truth of the matter is that this is an incredible experience to learn proper cornering, braking and general motorcycle operation techniques. These guys are really on to something. I had a fantastic time meeting the riders and finally going out for a […]

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Pacific Coast Highway|Northern California Motorcycle Ride

A damn good and affordable breakfast got us ready for the road. We leave the town of Greenfield heading north on Highway 101. Motorcycle trips are filled with opportunities to adjust plans. The landslide on Highway 1 and our inability to find the detour through Fort Hunter Liggett created such an opportunity. We had lost […]

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Pacific Coast Highway from Pismo Beach to Hearst Castle with a Landslide and New Military Recruits

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An Old Story to Start a New Adventure

Growing up we were often heading out on adventures. Sometimes the adventures would be intentional. These could be as close as a muddy spring trip along a trail on our “back 40.” Just preparing a fence line for our cattle to pasture on in Northern Minnesota could lead to a full weekend of trudging through […]

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What is an Adventure Motorcycle

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What is an Adventure Motorcycle

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Pacific Coast Highway Motorcycle Adventure – Long Beach to Pismo Beach

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Ian Coates Around the World Update

UPDATED April 18, 2011. This is an update on Ian Coates, the Smiling Wayfarerthat I met a year ago. Ian is a 67-year-old from Hebden Bridge, England. He has the adventurous heart of a 27-year-old. He has been traveling around the world since 1999 on a Honda Africa Twin motorcycle. Since Ian Coates left Canada and […]

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The Humble Motorcyclist

As a writer and business professional, my natural tendency is to test the limits and share my experiences. These qualities cross over into my passion for riding motorcycles.   Obviously, BestScenicRoutes.com is my personal effort to not bogart the best scenic routes and to share my experiences of the open road. As for testing the […]

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Motorcycle Ride Inspiration

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Product Review: Giant Loop Great Basin Saddlebag

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Product Review: Giant Loop Great Basin Saddlebag

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Nearly 40-Percent of Washington State Motorcycle Deaths are Unendorsed Riders

Are you riding dirty without an endorsement? You’re not alone. BestScenicRoutes.com investigated motorcycle crashes in Washington State to find out how many unendorsed motorcycle riders are being killed in crashes. The facts are astounding. According to Washington State Patrol records, during the five-year period from 2005 to 2009 (complete 2010 data is not yet available), […]

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Take a Highly Visible Stand, with High-Viz Motorcycle Riding Gear

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Product Review: Hyper-Lite LED lights for motorcycles

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Prelude to Conspicuity Article Series – Close Encounters of the 4-Wheeled Kind

Rear end collisions are near and dear to me, as they likely are to all motorcycle riders. Here is a brief story about one of the closest encounters of the 4-wheel caged kind that happened to me while stopped. The highway I was on happened to end and curl onto the entrance ramp to an […]

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An Ellensburg Motorcycle Adventure: Lion Rock and Old Durr Road

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An Ellensburg Motorcycle Adventure: Lion Rock and Old Durr Road

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Grand Coulee to Kettle Falls to Wauconda Washington

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North Cascades Connections – Okanogan Forest to Grand Coulee Dam

The North Cascades Highway is a very popular route for motorcyclists seeking curves, scenery and small towns to eat in. Relatively few riders from the west side of the mountains venture off the Cascade Loop route. That, my fellow riders is a shame. This article is part of the BestScenicRoutes.com effort to get people to […]

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North Cascades Connections – Okanogan Forest to Grand Coulee Dam

The North Cascades Highway is a very popular route for motorcyclists seeking curves, scenery and small towns to eat in. Relatively few riders from the west side of the mountains venture off the Cascade Loop route. That, my fellow riders is a shame. This article is part of the BestScenicRoutes.com effort to get people to […]

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Olympic Peninsula – Elwha Dam to Port Townsend

Continuing the relaxed nature of this trip, we weren’t in a hurry to leave the comfort of our sleeping bags. The sun began to warm the ground by the time that we woke up. This was to be our last day on the Olympic Peninsula. After gathering our food from the bear-proof cabinet, we begin […]

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Olympic Peninsula – Port Angeles and Hurricane Ridge

The next morning we head back to Hwy 101 via NP2880. This road offers great views down the steep cliffs above the Dungeness River. We dismount in Sequim to find treats and coffee. We find both within a short stroll. The coffee joint could have been found on any Seattle-area street. The treats on the other […]

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Olympic Peninsula – Hood Canal to Sequim

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Weekend Get-Away to Olympic Peninsula, the Greenest Place in Washington State

The true spoils of riding possibilities in the Evergreen State would make motorcyclists obese if edible. The only limiting factor to feasting on these spoils is time. Monica and I have a three-day weekend and our goal is to experience as much of the Olympic Peninsula as two nights and three days will allow for […]

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Scratched Paint as the Evidence of a Well-Ridden Motorcycle

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85 Miles of Dirt – A Group Ride through Snoqualmie National Forest

Group rides on dirt roads are best served wet. Putting a bunch of two-wheeled hooligans on a dry dirt road puts the strong taste of dust in all but the leader’s mouth. Lucky for us, we live in the Pacific Northwest. Rain is not in short supply. Sun and weekends seem to be a particularly […]

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Product Review: Garmin Nuvi 500-series GPS

Is it worth a few extra dollars to ensure that products work as advertised and last through the rigors of motorcycling? Most of the time, I would answer with a resounding “yes,” Ease of use and the ability to withstand Mother Nature is worth something to motorcyclists. Unfortunately, the marketing hacks have tuned into this […]

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Skagit Valley Tulip Festival by Motorcycle

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Mounting GPS to Suzuki V-Strom

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Ian Coates the Smiling Wayfarer

The need for adventure pulls some riders away from the comfort of home for weekends or sometimes more extended multi-day trips. An adventurous spirit has taken one man around the world on a trip that will touch the two wheels of his early nineties Honda Africa Twin on the soil of every continent except Antarctica. […]

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Finney Creek Road, Over the Hill We Go

Many riders enjoy the solitude of the open road. For me, it is always better to share the adventure. That’s where a friend on another bike or pillion comes in to play. My wife enjoys riding as pillion. She has trekked along with me exploring mountains, deserts, lakes and oceans. All of which were fantastic […]

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Looking Ahead to Better Corners

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Skirting the North Cascades Highway

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Product Review: Giant Loop Fandango Tank Bag

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The Buzz Around Town

Getting around in town can be a hassle. The streets are packed with SUV drivers who are more intent on talking on their cell phone than actually paying attention to what’s going on around them. Don’t even get me started on the absolute lack of parking in most areas that would pull you from the […]

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Riding and the Pursuit of Adventure

The question of why I ride a motorcycle is asked quite often. It seems that the answer would be simple, “because I like it.” My weekend rides don’t elicit that question from onlookers near as often as my daily commute. People understand the weekend joy rides in nice weather. The aspect that they don’t get is the daily […]

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Rockslides Cleared from Glorious Chuckanut Drive

Crews reopen Chuckanut Drive (SR 11) south of Bellingham today. The road was closed for nearly a month after two separate rockslides blocked the highway and destabilized the hillside above the road. Chuckanut Drive is a beautiful scenic route that stretches 21 miles from Mount Vernon, Washington north to Bellingham. The famous road, once in […]

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Puget Sound Destination: Pike Place Market

As the winter takes hold of our eastern escape route over the few Cascade Mountain passes in Washington State, my motorcycle trips become less frequent and typically shorter. I like to make more destination rides versus my typical routes of no particular plan. The no plan routes satisfy my wanderlust spring through fall. Winter requires […]

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Motorcycle Commuting along the Puget Sound

Many of the articles here at BestScenicRoutes.com have shared the great motorcycle tours along the highways, byways and backroads in the Puget Sound area.  My daily commute came up in conversation last week with a Facebook friend back in Northern Minnesota. Two obvious things hit me in that brief conversation. First off, I’m lucky to […]

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Winter Arrives in the Cascade Mountains; Cayuse, Chinook and Washington Passes Closed

Rain in the foothills equals snow in the mountains. That’s right my fellow riders, Mother Nature is closing us off from our beloved mountain passes. The Washington State Department of Transportation has closed Cayuse and Chinook passes for the winter. On Sunday, November 9, WSDOT officially closed State Route 123 over Chinook Pass in the […]

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South Park attacks Harley Davidson in Episode titled “The F Word”

“Loud pipes save lives” is a well-known phrase in America. It is also a growing problem in motorcycle rights. In fact, the American Motorcyclist Association says that few other factors lead more to misunderstanding and prejudice against the motorcycling community than excessively loud motorcycles. All motorcycles sold in the USA are manufactured to meet federally […]

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Private Screening of “One Crazy Ride”

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Riding Wizards Take to the North Cascades Highway

Washington State Route 20, also known as the North Cascades Highway, stretches 436 miles from Port Townsend to Newport, Washington. It is in fact the longest stretch of highway in the State of Washington. The true North Cascades Highway covers the section of SR 20 that crosses the Cascade Mountains from the town of Concrete […]

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Yakima to Everett via desert river canyons and tree-lined mountain passes

The prospect of being a certified Motorcycle Safety Foundation (MSF) RiderCoach has brought me and the V-Strom to Yakima Washington for a 60-hour course. The city of Yakima and surrounding Yakima Valley is known to be one of the best apple-producing areas in the world. The area also produces three-quarters of all hops grown in […]

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Buzzing through Mt. Rainier National Park

Ah yes, the joys of roughing it in a rustic camp ground. Who needs an expensive hotel room. There were three tents each with a happy motorcycle camper in our campsite. It was $15 of bliss split three ways between me and my riding companions, Jeff and Dan. The Takhlakh Lake Campground in the Gifford Pinchot National […]

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Scenic ride through Mount Saint Helens destruction

The Stromtrooper.com crew got together again in late July. We rode some of the most scenic routes that I’ve found to date in Washington State. That is really saying something as Washington is a very scenic state. Our route would take us through the Gifford Pinchot National Forest and up to the Mount Saint Helens viewpoint on […]

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Motorcycle camping San Juan Islands

It’s an hour after we planned to be out the door. That’s okay, because we’re heading for the San Juan Islands and it just isn’t island-like to be on time. It’s all about chilling out. Fretting over the little things would hinder a perfect trip. We made the short trip from Seattle north on I-5 […]

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Unwrapping the fine curves of Chuckanut Drive

Chuckanut Drive sounds like a candy bar. It is in fact one of the most scenic routes to be graced with a paved surface. I have wanted to point my V-Strom down Chuckanut Drive since I moved to Washington last year and heard someone talk about it for the first time. It was funny sounding, […]

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Scenic route through Skagit County fields to Whidbey Island airfields

Scenic roads are fun to take in by on your own, but they are also fun in a group from time to time. I ventured out on a group ride with a few fellow Suzuki V-Strom riders this past weekend. The ride was organized through Stromtroopers.com. In all, 10 riders converged upon Old Strokers Benchrace Café […]

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Cascading views along Washington’s Mountain Loop Highway

Since I’m fairly new to the Seattle area, I’m exploring different roads and finding gems from time to time. I recently found one such gem. I rode from Everett up to Arlington on I-5, to Darrington on SR 530, south on the Mountain Loop Highway to Granite Falls and back to Everett via Marysville. All I’ve got to […]

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