This is why you’ll have to wait for that mountain hike at Artist Point this Sunday

Thinking about heading up to Artist Point on Sunday, Sept. 8, for a late-summer hike amid mountain splendor?

You’re going to have to wait until the afternoon.

A portion of scenic Mount Baker Highway, which ends at Artist Point, will close from 7 a.m. to noon Sunday for the Mt. Baker Hill Climb, a leg-burning, lung-busting bike race.

About 300 road bicyclists will ride up 4,098 feet in about 22 miles from Glacier to Artist Point.

Also known as State Route 542, the highway will be closed — in both directions — at the race start at Snowater Road, a half-mile east of Glacier.

That section also will be closed to all cycling traffic not registered for the event.

Keep in mind that the road closure also will temporarily cut access to other popular hikes off the highway, including Lake Ann, so check your maps before you go or call the Glacier Public Service Center at 360-599-2714.

Better yet, head out on Saturday, when it’s expected to be partly sunny.

Sunday’s forecast shows a 60% chance of showers, according to the National Weather Service.

Exhausted riders only yards from the finish line after competing in the grueling Festival 542 in 2013. The Mount Baker Highway will be closed from 7 a.m. to noon this Sunday, Sept. 8, for what is now known as the Mt. Baker Hill Climb bicycle race. Staff The Bellingham Herald file
Kie Relyea has been a reporter at The Bellingham Herald since 1997 and currently writes about social services and recreation in Whatcom County. She started her career in 1991 as a reporter and editor in Northern California.