MARYHILL, WA YEARS VISITED 2000 Oysters to Onions, 2006 Splitting the Middle, 2007 Oysters to Onions, 2013 Pines to Vines, 2015 Roll On Columbia COUNTY Klickitat N O TA B L E A R E A H I G H L I G H T S Stonehenge Memorial replica, Maryhill Museum BICYCLING HIGHLIGHTS Epic views pedaling along the Columbia Gorge and a rewarding car-free climb up Maryhill Loops Road Maryhill is in the middle of the historic Columbia River highway — the best route to tour the expansive Columbia Gorge — known for a helpful tailwind. Our stop-in’s in Maryhill have a special treat. Most cyclists have heard of the Old Spiral Highway in Lewiston, Idaho, a frequent host of bike races famous for its 64 curves and 2000 feet of elevation change over eight miles. Well, we’ll do you one better. Maryhill, Wash. is home to Maryhill Loops Road, the first macadam asphalt-paved road in the Pacific Northwest. Formerly a test track paved in the early 1900s and now owned and refurbished by Maryhill Museum of Art, it rises 850 feet in a series of 25 curves (eight hairpin turns) at a grade of five percent. The best part? It’s completely closed to motorized traffic from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. most days, admission is free, and it’s just up the road from our usual campsite, Maryhill State Park.
Courtesy of Barbara McClinton
When riders aren’t coasting down this cyclist’s dream, they can dip their toes into the water and catch breathtaking view of the Columbia River, dotted by windsurfers and framed by the Sam Hill Memorial Bridge. Personal favorites were our visits to Maryhill Winery (also gracious hosts of our group) and picking up juicy, local stone fruit from the adjacent farm stand. PEDAL | 31