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Going riding on the freeway, again

June 27, 2009

It’s early, for a Saturday anyway. The sun is shining, a perfect day in store for Scooter Insanity 22’s Saturday ride to Mukilteo. But the Alaskan Way Viaduct will be closed for the Rock ‘n Roll Seattle Marathon.

Excuse me while my eyes unroll. It seems the Viaduct gets closed every other weekend for something like this. No big. The GTS is fast enough to ride on I-5, which is the fastest way to the meetup at Café Racer.

Still, I was expecting traffic to be congested heading north. It wasn’t. A big concern is the new pavement that runs from the junction with the Spokane Street Viaduct to just short of downtown. It’s concrete, with big, deep grooves.

Fifty mph is about as fast as I care to travel on this surface. At least there are no 18-wheelers, and there are at least two other lanes available to those who don’t think I’m going fast enough.

Once past the new pavement, the condition of the old stuff is a revelation. In a car, you don’t see how worn out it is, and how big some of the cracks are. But on a scooter, it’s another story entirely. Stay right, I say to myself, and you’ll be fine. After all, there are lots of places to hop off if things get too intense.

The Ship Canal Bridge was the most pleasant part of the trip. It’s usually rather windy, but not today. And it was resurfaced a few years ago, so it’s smoother than the pavement immediately to the south.

I’d put about 250 miles on the GTS since getting it back, and the whole time I’ve been saying to myself, “it works, it works!” Sixty mph is effortless, and I’ve gone a bit above 65 with no drama at all.

While I could’ve gone as far north as 65th, I take the exit at 45th. Let’s wind down slowly. We’re ready for anything on the ride. Favicon

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