and cross-country skiing. Even if you don’t have time to stay, the resort encourages visitors to look around or dine. Staying at the lodge is a splurge, but one you will long remember. Both the resort and its dining room have won AAA’s Four Diamond Award every year since 1994. The restaurant has won consecutive Washington Wine Grand Awards. Wine director Don Elsing showed me through the resort’s wine cellar with more than 5,000 bottles and 600 labels. For dinner I ate Crown S Ranch organic chicken and drank Karma Vineyards wine from Lake Chelan. This is a destination where I could linger awhile. Linger I can’t on this trip. Next morning I’m back on the bike on Highway 20 headed toward Washington Pass. National Geographic Traveler called the wildly scenic highway through North Cascade National Park “one of America’s grandest, most spectacular drives.” The park is indeed a destination with many sights to see and places to camp — no hotels or lodges in the park itself. The highway is also the way to the other side and a place with its own spectacular beauty: Whidbey Island.
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For more about the the Cascade Loop, including maps and suggested stops, check out cascadeloop.com. September / October 2013
Published on Aug 21, 2013