Cycling Mt. Constitution, Orcas Island, Washington
Ride 4.8 miles gaining 1,840’ at 7.3% average grade.
View of Mount Baker from Mt. Constitution Observation Tower.
Before heading to gorgeous Washington state on your cycling adventure, be sure to rely on our list of Things to Bring on a Cycling Trip, and use our interactive checklist to ensure you don't forget anything.
Climb summary by PJAMM’s John Johnson.
Mt. Constitution is the highest point in the Orcas Island (the largest of the San Juan Islands at the far northwestern tip of the US). From the observation tower atop Mt. Constitution, visitors have magnificent 360 degree views that include Mount Baker (northeast), the North Cascades Mountain Range (east), and other islands of the San Juan Archipelago (consisting of over 400 islands, 128 of them named) including clockwise from the northwest Waldron, Cypress, Blakely, Decatur, Lopez, Shaw, and San Juan Islands.
Ride past camping grounds and Cascade Lake on your way to the start.
Enter the park about a ½ mile from the start.
This climb is located entirely within Moran State Park (5,000+ acres, established 1921) which was donated to Washington State by shipbuilder Robert Moran.
Turn off Olga Road onto Mt. Constitution Road to begin the climb.
Cross the one lane bridge over Paul Creek at 7/10ths of a mile.
Ride through thick northwestern forest the length of the climb.
Flowers and . . .
. . . wildlife along the route.
Bruce and Stacy at the hairpin, mile 2.3 (about half-way).
Pass Summit Lake at mile 4.
Visitor Center at the completion of the climb.
Mt. Constitution Observation Tower at the top of the climb.
The observation tower is accessed from the parking lot at the top of the climb by a short gravel path. There is a gift shop and learning center located in the observation tower.
Views from the top
How to Get to Orcas Island: The primary and most scenic mode of travel to Orcas Island is via the Washington State Ferry from Anacrotes, WA. The fee for one person and standard vehicle is $10 each direction as of August 2019.
Seattle State Ferry from Anacrotes to Orcas Island.
Photo: Orcas Island Chamber of Commerce.
PJAMM on board and en route!!
Harbor and Orcas Island Ferry Terminal.
Bruce, Stacy, and Bob adjacent Observation Tower, Mt. Baker in background.
Celebrating Bob’s 76th birthday: 76 miles, 7,600’ of climbing (guess how many next year?? 😉).