Hiking: 6.5 mi / 1798 ft. climbing
Biking: 26.1 mi / 9.6 mph / 1211 ft. climbing
Home: Motel 101
Taking a break from biking for a morning, we hiked up a mountain! 1735 ft. to the top of Humbug Mountain, the tallest point on the Oregon Coast. We could access the trail right from the campground, so didn’t even need to pack up until we got back. There are some pretty great views from top, largely because the park service chopped down a huge area of trees at the summit. I know that viewpoints in the Pacific Northwest often aren’t entirely natural, and get some help from chainsaws, but this one was like an atomic bomb went off that felled all the trees for acres around. And in retrospect, the notch in the trees is quite visible when looking at the mountain from down on the beach.
There had been at least four other parties in the hiker/biker sites the night before, and something about getting back to camp and finding them all empty helped to bring forth the feeling that, while they are on “bike tours”, this is our new life, of which touring by bike is one component. A very large component, to be sure, but one that we don’t want to fully define us or keep us hemmed in.
Back to the bike touring, once we got around the mountain, we were back on the grand beach, but this time with the most serious headwinds we’ve faced so far, and way in excess the forecast. Even though it was a short mileage day, it was really demoralizing, and made the still-awesome scenery less-enjoyable, especially for Rett who was trying to get to our motel for her Friday video Happy Hour with friends (see again about this being our lives, not just a bike tour). Luckily a lunch stop of PB&J sandwiches, sitting on the ground with our backs against a wayside bathroom building shielding us from the wind, brought our mood up to “this is a suck-ass slog and it sucks” from “we’re not going to make it!”
When we finally made it to the motel in Gold Beach around 3pm ready to shower and relax, Rett was very not happy that there was no one at the office to check us in. After learning from another helpful guest about his check-in experience, we just started checking for unlocked rooms that matched what we’d reserved. Luckily the one that we picked ended up being the one that the motel owner selected for us when he finally called us back, though that didn’t stop me from walking into another unlocked room to get a working light bulb and swap it out for our burnt-out one. But beyond that, it was actually a surprisingly good find of a bike-touring motel by Rett for $70.
We’d been craving pizza for a couple days, and when our first two options in Gold Beach didn’t pan out, I got a good recommendation for Crow’s Nest, and rode to pick up our dialed-ahead order at a very “local” bar, which did in fact make an excellent pizza, hustled back to our motel as fast as possible atop my rear rack in the cool winds.