- The Nakagawa West Website

Welcome to our Website

Who are we?

We are Kent & Margo Nakagawa, along with Samantha, Maverick, Bailey, and Luna.

Why Nakagawa West? Because we're close to as far west as we can get (in the US) short of moving to Hawaii. We have been living in Beaverton, OR since June 2002.

We broadcast our news and events on this site. Our main picture collections are on a picture server at Smugmug. You can access the site through our link at the top of this page, or by clicking the following link to


facebookAlso on Facebook (Kent) (Margo)


The News from Beaverton

Xmas 2012

A quiet end to another busy year. And for 2013, we'll be turning on a new website interface, which will make it easier to put up news and other tidbits from our lives. In the meantime, here's a happy dog enjoying/guarding her Christmas present.



Orcas Island

September: An extended weekend to Orcas Island in the San Juan Island chain. We stayed at a lovely home (Margo bought the time at a church auction earlier this year). Perfect weather. First two days were cloudless and upper 70's. Third day was overcast, but dry. Last day was sunny and slightly cooler. Arrival day Friday was spent browsing the shops in Eastsound (the main town). Saturday was the exploration day up to Mt Constitution (highest point in the islands), and a sweep through the outer artist colonies. Sunday was a sweep through the remaining shops. Monday was the trek home. After a little struggle with quality meals on Friday, we got our bearings straight (thanks to our host, Kelly), and found much better fare the rest of the time.

Here's a sampling of some pics, with many more on Smugmug.


Ferries across the islands (Mt Baker in the background)


The observation tower at Mt Constitution, highest point in the San Juan Islands


These ferries are rather large!


August 12, 2012 - The Mid-Valley Covered Bridges Bicycle Tour, from Albany, OR. This ride features five landmarks - the covered bridges of Linn County.

A 58 degree start turned into mid 80's by lunch, and mid 90's in the last 20 miles! Kent rode 76 miles, including all five covered bridges. Added the signature distance-loop hill (944 ft), plus many 10+% grades, before taking the "no hills" cutoff option to avoid more heat. 5:05 bike time, 6:00 real time, 2400 ft of climbing, 14.9mph pace (best pace)

Here's a sampling of some pics, with many more on Smugmug.




More pictures on Smugmug


Tour de Cure

On Saturday, July 28th, Kent & Margo participated in the Tour de Cure bike ride for the American Diabetes Association. This is a 10 to 100 mile ride through the rolling hills of the farm country just outside of Portland.

We had perfect weather for riding again this year. Just under 1200 riders participated in the 4th edition of the Hillsboro ride. TeamNakagawa expanded to 9 members this year, raising over $4000. And we represented all four road courses (100mi, 65mi, 43mi, and 26mi). Kent finished his ride in 4 hrs 26 min bike time (6:15 total time) while helping riders deal with flat tires and other assorted issues. Margo raised $500, and will get a new ADA bike jersey for her effort. Kent earned another "rolling billboard", raised over $1000, and was a "Champion to Stop Diabetes" recipient.

Picture albums posted in Smugmug:

tdc2010a tdc2010c

A few from the Champions dinner




Some pictures, day of ride.

Many more pics on Smugmug.


June 23, 2012 . My first time on this ride, up Mt St Helens, an 82 mile round trip. Started at 6:45 with Jon Durdick in Toutle. Light drizzle and about 48 degrees starting conditions. From about mile 10, we start climbing, and I don't see Jon for the rest of the day. By the time I get to the first rest stop (Mile 16), I've decided that picture moments just aren't going to happen today. The rain is starting to increase, and the temps are starting to drop. And how do I know this? I can't use my clear glasses anymore because the keep fogging over. The next 10 miles is the endless climb (2400 ft) to Elk Rock (elevation 3800 ft). Not the most severe grades I've encountered, but when you're talking a consistent 6-7% grade over 10 miles, it's still ouch. My knees aren't happy with the dropping temps. My rain gloves are completely soaked through. And about a mile or so before the top, the ice pellets start mixing with the steady rain…


The Elk Rock rest stop, the first of the two summit climbs, is where the battle between pride and common sense was waged. 15 miles to Johnson Ridge. 1300 ft down, then *1800* ft up! It's a solid rain/ice mix, and I have a picture of us bikers huddled around a fire pit under the rest stop tent! I see my comp's temp reading: 37 degrees. And realize that I've got to ride DOWNHILL in these conditions. Common sense wins. And a good thing. the 10 miles down from Elk Rock to the first rest stop were brutal. I didn't pedal in the entire 10 miles. All downhill at 6-7%, riding my brakes the entire way to keep my speed below 30mph. Add 37 degree temps and completely soaked gloves and legs, and it's all the makings of hypothermia. All I could do was maintain control in the blinding rain and keep the brakes on, as I lost feeling in my hands. I stopped at the rest stop just so I could get some feeling back in my fingers. A merciful cup of coffee to warm my core. Some riders showed up on their downhill, and they were done. Couldn't stop shaking. At that point, I heard on the radio the ride monitors invoke "course emergency plan", which is a weather contingency plan. Essentially, all available vehicles were sent up the course to start pulling riders of the mountain who wanted transport back to base. Between the 4 riders at my stop, and at least 6 riders at the Elk Rock, I think the weather won today. I continued to ride the rest of the way back to Toutle.


So several good things today. My goal was to at least get to the first summit at Elk Rock, which I did in spite of terrible bike conditions. Second goal was no "bus of shame". I now know that I can handle the complete course if the weather cooperates. The Longview Rotary volunteers were great at all the rest stops and at the lunch. And I *earned* my T-shirt. 54 miles in 4:30.


Day 2 - After spending an overnight recovering from frostbite :), I drove up the Spirit Lake Memorial Highway to see if the weather would be a little more conducive to showing me what I had biked yesterday. Boy, was I in for a treat! Perfect morning weather, I got to see everything, until the rains came in the early afternoon. Look forward to next year's ride! Remember that all I could see yesterday was clouds and rain. Visibility was less than a quarter mile, so I had no concept of how steep the valley was…until today.

New pictures on Smugmug.



Margo L. Nakagawa, M.S.W.

June 16, 2012. Hard to believe that just over 10 years ago, we posed for this picture, at Margo's college commencement at San Francisco State.


Today, Margo received her hood at the Portland State University's School of Social Work commencement ceremony, after three years of hard work.



Joined by five PhD students and over 180 MSW (Masters in Social Work) students, it was a well earned celebration.

More pictures on Smugmug.

Click here for Earlier 2012 News

Contact Us | updated December 31, 2012 | ©2012 Gizmo Ink. |