Sunday, November 8, 2009

Day Two Hundred Forty-three, 091029 - Newport, OR

Day Two Hundred Forty-three, Date Thursday, October 29, 2009
Time in Saddle: 7:55
Distance for the Day: 72.49 miles From Tillamook To Newport, OR
Accumulated Trip Distance: 11,991 miles
Altitudes: Starting/Ending 60’/58’, Highest: 780’ Accumulated: 3750’
Speeds: Avg: 9.1 mph, Max: 33.6 mph
Weather: 43° textured overcast in the AM turning to light rain for most of the day, and becoming steady rain the last 1/3rd of the day, until evening, when it diminished and stopped
Expenditures: $22

I woke up at 6:15am, and got up at 6:40am. I found that if I get up too early, it’s still too dark by the time I’m ready to roll to safely travel, so I’ve adjusted my get-up time to about 6:45am. It wasn’t raining or drizzling when I broke down, so I spent a little extra time using and wringing out my hand towel to dry off my mattress and tent so they wouldn’t be wringing wet as I folded them up. I was ready to roll by 7:40am with the day just getting light enough to ride safely (good timing). For a while, I tried using the one extra Subway bag I had on one of my gloved hands to see if it would keep it drier – it did, but it made the twist grip gear-change extra-hard to operate, so I abandoned the idea. The first half of the day was a constant heavy drizzle and/or light rain. After a few hours of that, I began to get wet under my rain gear. By the time the day was two-thirds done, I had to stop a couple of times to towel off the excess moisture from my shirt, and I couldn’t stop moving for long, or I’d get hypothermic. I stopped in Beaver at 10am for a quickie brunch of hot dog and candy bar ($3). I made Neskowin by 12pm, Lincoln City by 3pm and Depoe Bay by 4:30pm. At one point north of Beaver, the official Oregon Coastline Bicycle Route diverged from Hwy 101, and went west to the coast on Sand Lake Rd. I checked it on Street Atlast, and thought it looked like a longer route (going out to the coast), and thought there might be more wind and rain out there, so opted to stay on 101. I suspect that was a mistake, because the mostly wonderful shoulders on the official route disappeared, and when there was any shoulder at all, it was at most a foot or so wide. This put me into the traffic lane of Hwy 101 with plenty of cars, monster mobile homes, log haulers, double-long tractor trailer rigs, and ‘oversized load’ transports – all on this skinny-ass two-lane highway. Fortunately, no major conjunctions occurred, everyone behaved (though I did get a non-descript yell from a young male in a truck), and I was able to get back to where the official route rejoined Hwy 101, where the good shoulders returned (whew!)
Just south of Depoe Bay, I stopped at The Lookout Observatory and Gift Shop at the aptly named Cape Foulweather (http://www.lookoutgiftshop.com/) and got some local intel from the guy there. I needed a 24-hour Denny’s to dry off while eating and working on my blog for the evening – there wasn’t one, but there was the Newport Café, which was 24-hour – I could go there. They didn’t have wi-fi, but I don’t need wi-fi when I’m writing and prepping pictures. From the gift shop, the official cycle route again diverged from Hwy 101, and this time, I took it. It worked out very well, going along a nice road that didn’t’ rise as high as the highway, and I only saw one other car on it. It all-too-soon re-joined Hwy 101, and I took that the rest of the way in to my goal for the day, the town of Newport – it was 6pm. Early on in entering the town, I found a Walmart, so went inside to see if *they* carried Joby tripods – no luck. I then spent a little time locating the 24-hour café (N44° 38.207' W124° 3.200'), and went in at 6:45pm, ordered up a mushroom burger, fries, and soda, and stayed there all night blogging until 7am. During my time there, I also got a slice of cheesecake, and pancakes (total of $26). The price I pay for all night blogging. But, I also got totally dry.

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