2019 Skagit-Snohomish Flashback Tour
(Note: Hovering over the slides with your mouse stops and starts the slides from automatically playing.)
Flashback: Shake, Rattle, and Roll! Tour
Special thanks to Steve Schmidt and Theresa Findlay for sharing their pictures
and to Linda Schmidt for writing this recap
Dave and Elaine Ellis planned the 22nd Skagit-Snohomish HCCA Regional Tour in Bow, Washington as a Flashback to a previous tour in the area. The event included four days of touring in northern Skagit County.
Tour participants gathered on September 8 at the Skagit Ridge Hotel to leave for a short tour to Pat and Merrily Farrell’s home in Sedro-Woolley for a Sunday night BBQ and the opportunity to view Farrell’s museum of cars, clothes, and other collections. As drivers and passengers enjoyed the hilly, curvy, forested roads and sylvan views, residents stood on porches and in driveways to wave and take pictures as the pre-1916 cars paraded by. The return to the hotel followed the same route.
Although “Raindrops Keep Falling on my Head” could have been the theme song for Monday’s tour, it didn’t deter the group from having a great time on the route led by Larry and Aurore Fickeisen. The scenery along the way was lush and green, and the coffee stop inside the Eaglemont Country Club was warm and dry.
As the group approached the Conway Elementary School for “Show and Tell,” the skies cleared, and students were able to see and learn about cars that predated their great-grandparents. They seemed to especially like the horns!
Following a drive along the Skagit River Dike, the group arrived at the lunch stop, which included the opportunity to stroll through the streets, piers, and shops of La Connor on the Swinomish Channel. The return route gave participants a chance to drive along Padilla Bay through Edison and Bow on the way back to the hotel.
Dave and Elaine Ellis hosted a dinner of pizza at the hotel followed by root beer floats. After dinner, there was a swap Meet for the men and a Hat Sale for the ladies.
Tour leaders Pat and Merrily Farrell led the cars on Tuesday, in Ray and Vicki Markley’s absence on a route titled: “To Concrete or Bust.” Drivers noticed some cars and farm equipment, younger than those on the tour, displayed as “yard art” upon leaving the hotel. Lyman City Park was a great place to stop for munching refreshments, taking pictures, and applying sunscreen.
Skagit Valley is known for agriculture, and tour participants saw a diverse representation of area farming. Huge fields of crops and livestock bordered the roads. Some of the livestock were startled by the sounds of the Horseless Carriages driving past.
The clouds that shrouded the foothills of the Cascades in the morning only wreathed the highest peaks by afternoon providing beautiful mountain vistas. The route took “the roads less traveled” making the tour a leisurely drive. Over one road was a tunnel of moss-covered trees. Spectacular!
The group stopped in Concrete for lunch at the Lonestar Restaurant. Steve Gordon expressed concern over “staying in Concrete too long and being stuck.” Evidently, he got out in time.
On the way out of town, the cars drove over the famous concrete bridge and stopped at Puget Sound Energy’s Fish Trap, Fish Taxi, and Interpretive Center. After a drive along the Skagit River, looking for eagles, the tour stopped at Morrie Robinson’s “Farm Powers of the Past” to enjoy a museum of all things mechanical as well as other collections.
Mike and Carolyn Martin planned a lovely tour for Wednesday. Participants sported flags and wore red, white, and blue for Patriot Day in remembrance of 9-11-2001, but a half mile into the tour, Martin’s rear wheel came off. No one was hurt!
The route headed north around Whatcom County’s Samish Lake and along beautiful tree-lined roads. Then it wound its way over to Fairhaven on short stretches of primitive and one lane roads reminiscent of the roads these cars “grew up” on. Participants also experienced driving on Chuckanut Drive with views of Samish and Bellingham Bays. The road, which hugs the sheer sandstone cliffs of the Chuckanut Mountains, is the only place where the Cascade Mountains meet the sea.
Dave and Elaine arranged for lunch at the picnic pavilion in Fairhaven Park. On the way back to the hotel there were tasty stops at the Samish Bay Cheese Company and Bow Hill Blueberry Farm.
A big Thank You to Harold Jr. and Ann Musolf for driving the trouble truck for the tour. They were busy as is evidenced by the number of contenders for the Trouble Trophy.
Wednesday was capped off with a banquet at the Skagit Casino Conference Center. Participants gathered for a social hour followed by a delicious buffet.
Following the meal, Linda Schmidt presented the awards to the winners of the ballots for favorite cars at the tour. Winning Ladies’ Choice was Cam and Kay Sidwell’s 1914 Peerless. The Gentlemen’s Choice was awarded to the 1913 Bugatti owned by Alan and Mary Travis. Chosen for People’s Choice was Pat and Merrily Farrell’s 1911 Stanley 85 Touring.
Vying for the “coveted” Trouble Trophy were Don Plumb, Dick Rash, Mike Martin, Cam Sidwell, Alan Travis, Peter Findley and Mark Shaw. The “lucky winners” were Mark and Rinda Shaw in their 1912 Buick Roadster. The universal joint disconnected and allowed the rear end to rotate downward. This effectively lengthened the brake rods and eliminated any chance of using the brakes. The Shaw’s search of the road for the lost part was to no avail. However, as luck would have it, following the presentation of the trophy, Mike Yeakel reported that a utility worker found a lost part, and Dave Ellis began a lively auction. Bids quickly rose. After some good-natured fun at Mark’s expense, he was reunited with the elusive part.
In addition, the lucky winner of the “Shake, Rattle, and Roll” Quilt, designed by Christine Brewer and sewn by Elaine Ellis, was Teri Hill. The beautiful baskets created by Vicki Markley were won by Shirley Slack and Ron Danzie.