This route is the shortcut over to the east side. The SR 520 floating bridge is closed to bicycles, but many Metro and Sound Transit routes cross the bridge, and they are all equipped with bicycle racks. Refer to the metro web site for more information on using bicycle racks. You have to pay a two zone fare to cross the bridge since you leave the Seattle city limits. This costs $2.00, which seems steep for a trip across the bridge, but if your employer pays for a bus pass, then no problem.
Busing across the bridge is particularly easy for the east bound commute in the morning. Many buses cross the bridge. Some are labeled "East Base". These are out of service buses returning to the east side, but they will stop and pick up bicycles at the Montlake Freeway Station. Some of the scheduled buses will have their bike racks full when they get to Montlake, but the "East Base" buses (also called "dead heads") always have empty bike racks. Unless the freeway is unusually congested, I can catch a bus within 5 minutes in the morning.
Heading back to Seattle in the evening is a little more difficult. You don't typically have "dead heads" heading west from the Yarrow Point or Evergreen Point bus stops, and the scheduled west bound routes often have the bike racks full. Sometimes a sympathetic driver will let you bring your bike on board, but this is getting less and less common. I usually just catch a bus at the Overlake Transit Center, and then ride home from Montlake.
The route from Evergreen Point to the 520 bicycle trail is hilly and has a few congested areas. On the other hand it's the fastest way to get to the east side, and the 8 mile ride to Overlake is enough to get a morning workout.
Copyright © Rich Knox 2004. All rights reserved. Last Modified: 07/04/2004.