It was too cold to sit and eat breakfast in the forest, so after breaking down our tent, Dallas and I rode about 3.5 miles before we found a space where the sun penetrated through the trees. We sat in the warm sun and shared an apple, banana, pear, and an energy bar. We only had to ride another mile before coming to a coffee shop in the town of Myers Flat. Three shots of espresso and two cookies later, we were back on the road.
This was one of those rare days where I was ahead of Dallas for most of the day. I was able to keep a fairly good pace once I got going, but would stop and wait for Dallas every few miles. The stopping and going was draining though, and overall we progressed at a slow pace. We stopped again outside of Garberville to eat our tuna and crackers with some pistachios, a grapefruit and dark chocolate. Even though we were on the road before 10am, we had only gone just over 20 miles by 2pm. As the day went on, the terrain grew hillier, and the second half of our ride involved a LOT of climbing. Dallas was feeling undernourished and sluggish, and I was feeling frustrated for having to stop and wait.
As we crested a hill just a mile or two before Leggett, I saw signs for food across the street. I suggested we fuel up over there (The Peg Room) while deciding our next move. The burgers we ordered there were incredible, and they had outdoor picnic tables where we could sit with our bikes. It was starting to get dark, and we had completed just under 50 miles since morning. A couple that showed up while we were eating told us they had biked the coast two years ago and that there is a pretty tough hill coming up to Leggett. It didn’t look like there were any other campground options for another 27 miles, so we ultimately ended up camping across the street from the Peg Room. Maybe we can get breakfast there too!
This was such a beautiful day. Dallas and I enjoyed sunshine and comfortable temperatures all day, with gorgeous views of Oregon’s coastline along much of the ride. The first half, from Gold Beach to Brookings, was awfully hilly and included some of the longest climbs of our tour so far. The descents were rewarding but were over too quickly. I felt like much of the first 30 miles was spent climbing hills at a pace of around 5 miles per hour.
Brookings is the southernmost town in Oregon, and Dallas and I spent a little too much time there. Since all the hills slowed us down, we got there a bit later than anticipated and didn’t actually get our daily dose of espresso until after 2pm. This coffee shop we found was nestled by a harbour, with several docks and a cluster of little food places right off the road. In between coffee and pizza, we spoke with Jeremy, who was staying with his girlfriend on their sailboat. Like us, he had quit his job for a more adventurous and fulfilling life of seasonal jobs with plenty of vacationing in between seasons. Hopefully we will run into him and his girlfriend again down the road.
We ordered a pizza with salad on it from the nearby pizza place, and then moved on to the place next door for ice-cream cones before hitting the road again. It was after 4pm when we finally left Brookings, and it was another 30 miles to Crescent City. We finally made it to California! So far, I think Oregon is more beautiful, but our route took us inland a bit once we crossed the state border. More coastline and redwood forests await us tomorrow, so I’m sure California will redeem itself.
Dallas and I had hoped to make it a few miles past Crescent City and into Del Norte Coast Redwoods State Park to set up camp, but the sun was setting as we stopped at the grocery store, and Dallas had remembered climbing a steep hill with no shoulder to get out of Crescent City. We didn’t want to deal with that in the dark, so we’re staying in town tonight and will try to get an early start in the morning to make up for it.