I had to find my own transportation up to Seattle and back this weekend, so I was basically forced to rent a manual Golf R on Turo.

My lady made plans last night to go up to a cabin near Mt Hood with her friend for the weekend. She’ll be taking the dog, thus will be driving our DD to avoid getting voluminous amounts of dog hair all over her friend’s car.

This leaves me to my own devices to get to Seattle and back for my friend’s housewarming party on Saturday evening. I had not gotten myself any sort of birthday present, and she’s always telling me how fun German cars in general and VWs in particular are, so clearly the only reasonable option I had available to me was to rent a blue manual 2012 Golf R with a “close to 300 HP” stage 1 tune. My hands were tied!

Does ayone have any suggestions of fun places to drive in between Portland and Seattle? My general plan right now is to take the long way back, winding around Mt. Rainier and St. Helens, since the weather will be nicer Sunday. I may also do that on the way up, because I’ve driven that part of I-5 soooo many times and it’s a snooze fest. Is there anything fun to drive around on near the sound, or on the Olympic Peninsula?

If any Seattle-area Oppos wanna meet up between, say, 12 and 5 either day, I’d be down for that too. I figure everyone’s probably busy this close to the holidays, though.

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Lastly: how scared should I be of this car? It has honestly what seems like an unreasonable amount of power to me, especially considering that the sportiest cars I’ve ever driven have been a Chrysler 300 S (auto) and a Fiat Spider (manual). I definitely don’t plan on doing anything crazy since 1) it’s not my car, 2) it’s gonna be wet, and 3) I do not have any kind of high-performance driving experience. But should I play it even safer and stick to the gentle, boring curves of I-5?