The Decade of the Eastrail is coming into view. The buildout of this major regional rail-trail will reach a milestone moment Saturday afternoon when the Totem Lake Connector biking and walking bridge opens. The bridge is almost like the golden spike that, thanks to a number of other recent additions, will finally connect the Eastrail to the Sammamish River Trail and, therefore, the Burke-Gilman Trail.
This is so cool and the result of decades of work by innumerable people both inside and outside of politics as well as a myriad of different government agencies. As of Saturday, you will be able to ride a loop around the north end of Lake Washington almost without leaving a trail. The only non-trail segments will be the Montlake Bridge connection from 520 to the Burke-Gilman and a couple steep blocks of 108th Ave NE near the South Kirkland Park and Ride between the Eastrail and the 520 Trail via Northup Way. But even this small Kirkland gap will be made optional when the under-construction Eastrail to Northup Way connection is completed as soon as late summer. After that, riders will have the option to use the non-protected bike lanes on Northup for a less-steep climb up to the Eastrail.
Who else is riding the new trail loop around north Lake Washington this weekend? I feel like this ride needs a name. Post your suggestions in the comments.
Bridge opening celebration
The Totem Lake Connector biking and walking bridge officially opens Saturday afternoon. The celebration goes from 2–4 p.m., and the City of Kirkland will be coordinating an aerial photo in case you want to become famous. Eastrail Partners are also organizing a pair of rides to the bridge that both start at 2. One leaves from Wilmot Gateway Park in Woodinville and the other leaves from South Kirkland Park and Ride. Email [email protected] to RSVP for a ride.
The fantastic Chainline Brewing Co. is releasing their new Eastrail Ale July 13 at their trailside Chainline Station in Kirkland. The release party goes from 5:30–7:30, and a portion of proceeds go to Eastrail Partners.
Eastrail concert series
Eastrail Partners is also promoting a summer concert series July 12, 19 and 26 at the amphitheater in Kirkland’s Feriton Spur Park near the Google campus and Chainline Station.
EDIT: I have been informed that I’m not the only one who did not like the capital T in EasTrail, and that the official name of the trail and the organization Eastrail Partners no longer capitalizes the T (except in their logo). I have changed all the Ts to ts in this post.