Composed mostly of neighborhoods, this is a nice area to ride in, though there are a few streets that get a fair bit of traffic.
There are a few classic climbs here.
The first two climbs answer the question “How do I get from the Sammamish valley up to Kingsgate?” The first one (A) doesn’t have a good name other than “that climb at the end of Willows road”, so I guess we’ll go with that. It starts with a steep section over some railroad tracks, flattens, and then steepens up again, probably hitting the 13% mark or so at the turn. Used to be low traffic but there seems to be more on it these days. The second climb (B) up 132nd is reached either from the south or by turning left after the first pitch of the A climb. It is a short little bitch of a climb, sticking at 16% or so. Not fun. Both of these climbs will top out near my favorite intersection, NE 132nd St and 132nd Ave NE.
Similar to the fist two climbs, the third and fourth climbs answer the question “How do I get up to the south part of 132nd Ave NE?”. The two answers are NE 120th (C), and a bit of a wander through the neighborhood starting on 127th Avenue (D). The first one is a long, hard pitch, while the second one has a steep first pitch (14%? 15%? Something like that) and then is more rolling. I prefer the second one myself.
Next we move to (E), which is a climb up 132nd that is known as “Kingsgate Hill” in the 7 Hills of Kirkland ride. It’s an okay way to go east, though if you head sound to 128th, you can head east next to the hospital where there is less traffic.
Next we move to Norway hill, which can be ridden from the south (F), or from the north (G). From the north is another hill on the 7 Hills ride, and is the harder one, clocking in at 400+ feet of elevation and perhaps 13% at the steepest.
Climb H is Brickyard road. It’s a decent way up though there can be a fair bit of traffic at times. Just to the east is 173rd/124th (J), which would be a nice climb except for the lack of shoulder and the traffic.
And finally, we work around to the winery climbs. The classic route (K) is yet another one of the 7 Hills climbs, and arguably the worst of the lot. It has short climbs in the 17-18% range, with brief flatter sections in between. Another option is (L), which takes you up NE 145th rather than going through the neighborhoods. I recommend avoiding this road; it has none of the cachet of the classic route and all of the traffic.
Most of the are decent descents, though you have to be careful about tight turns and stop signs at the bottom. Brickyard is probably the nicest on to descend, thought 132nd has some serious potential for speed.