For all following this blog I have some updates in my life.
I’ve been attending Graduate school since this wonderful trip, and have been enjoying it, and serving a church in Bolivar, Missouri for the past two years. I’ve kept up with running and cycling, and am working towards another endurance triathlon this Fall/Winter. I also look forward to some shorter tours, but in the mean time I’ve started another blog. BolivarGilead.wordpress.com
It has some comics that I make for school and work, and I’ve begun following a new TransAm blog for ACA’s self supported group for this year.
If you’re up for seeing some old haunts or just some of this beautiful world we live in, I invite you to follow along with me.
Once just wasn’t enough.
I hope you’re all doing well, and continuing to enjoy the amazing world around you, the company of friends, and some time on that fun two wheeled creation.
Fueled with cereal our heroes struck out on another day of cycling.
Facing such daunting obstacles as fog armaments of blinky lights were brought to bare.
Marlene even escorted us to make sure we didn’t stir up too much trouble.
We courageously faced such dangers as… um… hills, and er… downhills as we pedaled along.
Then we came upon a hootenanny house, no time to stop and hoot though.
Salt was on the breeze and our momentum was strong.
At the last possible moment, Disaster struck!
Shep an Aonne were maliciously attacked by the cyclists oldest nemesis… the ground.
Aonne only suffered slight scrapes, but Shep`s bike was greatly injured. The handlebars were askew, a scratch on the frame, but worst of all the rear wheel was toast. Steve and Shep worked long and hard on the wheel, and with exceptional efforts they managed to get a frighteningly wobbly wheel onto Sheps bike.
Our hero Shep then led the way the final 3 miles to the beach.
With the rest of us following in his wake.
The goal nearly at hand.
Over a small dune and our front wheels hit salt water.
Hearty congratulations were made, we had reached the Pacific!
Then the Pacific reached out for us, and we were standing in a foot of water…. we didn’t feel like cycling onto Hawaii so we made a hasty retreat.
Our peregrination to the end of the continent was complete.
I am thankful to have been blessed with such admirable touring companions.
Down the coast a bit we met up again for our final dinner.
We were joined by friends and family.
The whole foods ladies even surprised us with an appearance.
Revelry and reflection ensued.
Much refuelling took place as well, yum.
Our good pals, the Dutch ladies, allowed us to share in Marlene`s triumph as well.
And gulls arrived to catch sight of our merry band.
Thanks to all of you that made this journey so amazing. It has been a true blessing to meet such wonderful and loving people all across the country.
I will email all those I have contact information on, if you don’t hear from me you are vigorously invited to send me an email or comment on this blog.
Camp came down early today, as we faced a 70 mile day.
We did make time to eat out… and I was famished.
After replenishing my energies…
I promptly took a wrong turn and cycled an extra 8 miles… adventure cycling should really provide maps for this section.
I did see some interesting things as I worked to catch up to the others.
Catching them did take a while
A long while
But I managed, and enjoyed Franklin’s cycling company.
I even got to see the others.
We visited a convenience store
And Shep charmed a local lady.
Marlene even joined the fray.
We rode on and found another covered bridge.
A short ride and camp appeared.
There we were treated by Patti and Phil to a fantastic dinner… which I was largely to busy eating to photograph.
The company was first class too.
A final map meeting, a few games of euchre and off to bed. Sleep is important, tomorrow is the final day of our continental crossing.
Our westward journey continued today opening with some sage advice about keeping mouths closed.
Which we disregarded… in our defense, we WERE in the best cafe in Oregon. The server at the cafe told us so.
We passed a nearly extinct creature, the covered bridge. I had to snap this photo quickly lest it become skittish.
Before long we left 126 and found some peace on the back roads.
I also saw this tiny wooded hill, it looks fake to me.
Some cool mossy trees.
Before I knew it camp had appeared.
After laundry and chores it was time for the map meeting.
Then chow time.
The day ended with Marlene showing off her western duds. Very snazzy.
Our last big climb of the trip was today, so we went out for breakfast… this explains Tom`s bright smile… we got to sleep in and eat something other than oatmeal.
Yup, definitely NOT oatmeal.
One last view of the sisters
Then we were encompassed by a forest, it surrounded us for most of our 15 mile climb.
Then suddenly, the tree line cleared.
It was replaced by a breathtaking lava wasteland that stretched to the horizon.
That has remained largely unchanged for 1500 years.
Most of us stopped to take in the view.
It was a place I could have spent a long while, but there was still 3 mile between me and the top of the pass.
The lava fields stretched to both sides of the road in places.
At the top there was an observatory built from the rock.
You could see the mountains through observation holes.
You could climb to the top
And see the great Vista.
Of course you didn’t have to climb.
Then it was time to descend.
A bit like Vesuvius, the road was steep and twisty.
We lost over 3000 feet of elevation in 11 miles.
My breaks earned their pay on the hairpin turns today.
On the way down I found a trail to proxy falls, so I did a bit of hiking.
It was a rainforest.
The waterfall was beautiful.
I admired it for a while
Then hiked back to finish the ride. I met a friendly group of seniors visiting the pass as well. They were very supportive of my trip and future plans. Thanks guys!
Then I saw something surprising, a LOW fire danger. Look I think Smokey is smiling.
A ride into camp
Near McKenzie Bridge
And Sheps first smore.
A full day.
We started out the day eating breakfast at brothers.
Was I hungry? Maybe a little.
But I don’t think it showed.
We then rode on towards Sisters, Oregon. So named for 3 sister mountain peaks.
I saw a plane doing touch and goes as I climbed a hill. It was almost dizzying.
I found Marlene along the way and we stopped in Redmond to visit the Safeway for lunch and to blog.
We then did a few extra miles “exploring” town, then once we figured out where we were and where the route was we continued on.
Marlene went to the library,
And I continued to Sisters.
We later met up and Marlene treated Shep, Aonne, and I to ice cream. We met a nice Ukrainian American lady that told us all about how she walked here through Alaska. What a story.
Then all the guys save Phil and Mark went out for some tasty BBQ.
I tried the burnt ends.
Then a nice shake for desert… what can I say, ice cream is my weakness.
I did learn pennies in water over a door is supposed to keep flies out. However, we did see a fly inside.
And tiny jaw breakers… for hamster jaws maybe?
Today was a big day.
I mean BIG. We had 87 miles and 2 rather sizeable mountain passes.
We rode through picture gorge.
It was monumental… literally
Not knowing if I would get to go to church I sang church songs all day. This is the day the lord has made was a favorite for the ride.
I sang quite loudly
So it was good that I was alone.
After the first pass was a great downhill into Mitchell.
Where I found a church.
They were very welcoming there.
We sang about mountains being,removed, it was perfect.
Then it was time to go up Ochoco pass.
Some tough cycling, but I was still singing.
So I made it alright.
A headwind tried to keep me from finishing.
But I prevailed.
We made it into camp
Then went to dinner
I was hungry!!
Aonne got 2 burgers after a mishap involving the floor.
This was our last long day of the trip. I am so thankful for having found a church family to share it with.
Today was a short day, just 45 miles.
It was also mostly downhill.
We stopped off midway to buy groceries.
Then a quick ride to finish the day.
We were in Dayville by 1:00
We stayed in the Presbyterian church.
Mark and Steve were our cooks.
This local artist brought us some phenomenal art to view.
What a talent!
It was a nice respite before the next challenging day.
We left Bakers City to go Prairie City.
We had 3 passes to go over, so I rode at my own pace.
Which meant I saw the others a few times
But most of the day was solo riding.
It gave me a chance to come up with a song, which I sang quite loudly. 🙂
It was fun coming up with all sorts of verses.
I found an osprey nest.
They didn’t look too friendly, probably because I am 1/3 fish.
Another state with signs damaged by buckshot.
I didn’t see any of these running around. They must me with the moose.
The first pass was alright, but the second has a nice bonus…
Learning is fun!
Then it was time to refill my dwindling water supply.
I also heard my 4kforcancer friends were here the day before.
I splurged for an ice cream shake and hung out for an hour until the others started to arrive… and I still couldn’t win this game. 2 pegs was my best result.
One more pass, the highest of the day, but easiest.
Then a spectacular and fun 7 mile downhill into town finished a good day of cycling.
We stayed at the RV park that was also the town park. A strange setup.
This dude is from 1976, appropriate for the transam route. I wonder if some cyclists carved him on their trip the first year.
Some quality dinner provided by Tom and Steve, the chefs that night.
Chilli macaroni and salad.
Then Shep hung his shorts on the flag pole to dry.
Steve (after someone who shall remain nameless pointed the opportunity out) decided to help Shep dry his shorts faster.
They caught the breeze quite well.
So with our camp flag wafting overhead the campers went to sleep.
Steve just slept a bit closer to the flag.