Monthly Archives: June 2012

June 24, Day 6 Prarie to Baker City part one

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This is us this morning after breakfast in Prarie. The waitress at the diner who was neither young or old had a full restaurant at seven in the morning being the only place of its kind for miles and miles. Still, she came out and offered to take a photo of the three of us. That’s how nice people are out here. I’m attributing it to the spaciousness of it all.

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June 23, Day 5 Dayville, OR to Prarie, OR

Depending on who you talk to out here or what map or sign you believe
We did between 80 and 90 miles with two mountains yesterday
We were beat (Especially with the hail and all)
We had a nice rest in the Fish Ranch Inn with a cherry tree out our window
We were hoping for dinner but had only the mini mart
We went to sleep sure we’d find breakfast in the cafe we remembered seeing the day before

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We went to the cafe but like so many buildings out here
It was out of business and for sale so we went to the grocery-ish store
That “grandpa” runs

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I got his coffee from a machine and we all managed to buy something that resembled breakfast (like yogurt and a banana) the kids went back to the inn but I remained talking with grandpa while I drank my coffee and heard lots of stories about the ghost that lived in the store named Bill.

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It was fascinating.
Then we went on to Mt. Vernon (another thirty miles or so) which had a real restaurant with real food!! We were in heaven in the “Silver Spur.”

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Well nourished we went on thru John Day and finally landed at a campground in Prarie for six bucks a night. We set up tent and then did our laundry with detergent this time at “the washing well” which was painted blue.
I am blogging from the oxbow restaurant and bar that has a wooden floor a hundred years old and two gigantic wooden frames complete with half nude women.
It was an easy day being relatively flat, not too hot with good food. Forty five miles which we started at eleven. Tomorrow we have lots of climbing. Three mountain summits. At dinner we bowed our heads and prayed for a ride over. That kind of climb and seventy miles to the town we are trying to get to.
At one point today amidst the unphatomably huge landscape, I felt like “what’s the point of all this?
Then two bikers came along from the other way carrying there own gear, “self supporter” as it’s called. One of them said, “where are you headed?” we said “Virginia” and they said “we just came from there!”
“just” as in 3,800 miles. Love that.

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June 22, Day 4 ochoco reservoir to Danville Oregon

First off, ive lost my glasses and cant see the text, so please excuse the mistakes
Also, since qe are camping we dont have power to power our devies even though i have a solar power iphone case
It still doesnt really powere enough
Thats why its a long time between blogs
And picture are shot on the iphone
And sometimes theres no power but the real deal is
The landscape is so huge and magnificent you cant begin to get in on a camera
Truly i am 24 /7 surrounded by magnificent nature out here

That’s over 80 miles!
Seems like a week has gone by since this morning.
I woke up to rumbling. Took me a while to figure out it wasn’t a new apple sound or people in an apartment above me moving furniture but long overly persistent thunder so
I got out of my sleeping bag and started to cover the panniers with the plastic bags I bought just in time in the supermarket last night(just in time)
As we were packing up camp it started to rain and by the time we left camp, all in our rain gear, the shower was over.
We did a long slow , not too steep thirty five mile climb to Mitchell. At the end, we kept thinking it was around every bend. Our anticipation and exhaustion level was high. The descent into Mitchell was an intense grade down ( the kind with the yellow warning sign for trucks) half way through it it started to pour. We pur our rain suits on again. When we got to Mitchell, there was hardly anything there! 2 cafes and a convenience store. We got there at noon, had chicken noodle soup (out of a cam?) at a cafe nd got some protein bars at the convenience store and heaedd out on the “8 mile” which is what they call it around here.
It was a lot of straight up for 8 miles but we actually managed it okay. The summit came before we were dead and then there was some forty plus miles of gradual descent. Those eight miles were non stop pouring sweat wearing a t shirt in coltish weather
The descent was smooth except that in the middle of that there was aHUGE downpour
So much so that we went through a rains tunnel as we were at the bottom neat rattlesnake creek ( saw one dead and one alive on the road) and the wind was coming straight up in our faces and we could hardly move and then it started to hail!!! It was super intense. Finally after some 80 miles we end up in Danville which has a nice family hotel and we have a private bath
That is where I am now finally blogging because we finally have electrical outlets to charge our devices

June 21, Day 3, Sisters Or to Prineville OR

Great breakfast in sisters Oregon. There was a health food store there too.
A couple of people in sisters told us to detour from our map and go on ” the road less traveled” with less traffic.It was beautiful as is all Oregon. It was a bit tricky feeling like we knew where we were going but we did.
It seemed to go on and on however and we were way too hot. We are eating out of tiny grocery stores (what would be called “corner stores” in the city) and quicky marts and it’s cheap but a drag. These towns are so small there is not much in them and fifty miles between towns. It is hours and hours of gorgeous wilderness.
There is water everywhere. Fairy tale like lakes and literally always a river beside the road.
Just when we thought we couldn’t continue from being so tired, and thought we had another 14 miles to go once we got to the freeway, when we got to the freeway intersection, we were over joyed to see we were one mile outside of our next town which was Prineville Oregon.
We found a super candy and ice cream store that was air conditioned. We had milk shakes that we’re fantastic and then we went to the Laundrymat. There wasn’t any deterrent to buy so we hand washed with our soap and water bottles then threw them in the washer and dryer.
While they were in there, we went to the grocery store and bought dinner and breakfast and lunch for the next day.
The people in Oregon are super nice but the economy looks very depressed. It seems like fifty percent of the homes on the beautiful rivers in the country are for sale ($150,000) and a lot of the farms are too.
It is all white people in Oregon and they all seem to be Christian (Protestant variety) There are no African Americans at all, every now and then there is a Russian type. But so anyway, they are all very nice to me (a white person).

June 20,Day 2 over McKenzie pass

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There was no bus
We rode 4 miles and found a deli !!!
There I had a miraculous cappacino and after that it was 35 hard miles up a mountain!!!
There were times when we thought we couldn’t make it.most of the ride really. When we were just at the top riding wheel to wheel going soo slow a band of Mosquitos attacked us visciously. Wow! Soon After that it was down down down down into the town of Sisters Oregon which is a really nice town. We got to a bike store and realized as we pumped up our tires that we had been riding on 60 pounds of pressure instead of 100!!! AND wE DID IT!!! I’m very proud of us
After that we slept in the city campground which was nice and even had a shower

June 18th, Airplane Day, San Francisco, CA to Eugene, OR

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This is us at 5:30 in the morning. Jon took this photo after dropping us off at San Francisco Airport.
We flew to Portland and then took a tiny plane to Eugene.
In Eugene airport we put together our bikes. Which took hours. They were more taken apart to fit in the boxes than we expected. Brett at Mikes Bikes in Berkeley was fantastic in helping us over the phone. Noah’s disk brake retailer was completely detached from the bike and the chain was all twisted up. We took photos of it and sent the photos to Brett’s iPhone in the Berkeley bike shop. He recreated the situation and then sent us a video of him fixing it!!! It was mostly Sa and her physics who did this. Noah and his noticing skill figured out that the fork had been turned around and bit by bit we put the bikes back together
We left the airport and biked the wrong way 5 miles but it was so incredibly beautiful it hardly mattered. We were so happy just to be on our bikes and riding.
After about an hour we biked into Eugene and had a fantastic guy at a bike shop go over the bikes and fine tune everything for practically nothing. After that, we had dinner and went to sleep in an over priced two star hotel with a bathtub.

june 19, Day 1, Eugene OR to Rainbow OR

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Today we rode fifty miles along the McKensie river
We are camping in a nice spot by the river
We have a lovely set up with nice pads and sleeping bags in a nice tent.
We are all so tired we are going to bed at 7:30!!!
Wilderness is everywhere and there is fifty miles before food tomorrow. Nothing we’d call real food here. We are grateful for chicken pot pies for dinner. Fifty miles before food tomorrow and thirty of that is a 4,000 foot climb. Really? Really. At least that’s how it looks from the info we have. We have stocked up with power bars. Hoping to leave camp at six and be to food by lunch

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I’m no boy scout and I wasn’t prepared

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To find hotels so lifeless and expensive

as I am now researching this for the first time.

Two days before we leave,
I have changed my mind from inside to outside. . From hotel to campsite.
It’s more work, but will also be more fun and more people.

Today I got what we need to camp our way across.
I spent a lot of time in REI balancing out money and weight.
The cheap heavy tent or the expensive light one? Over The Cascades? the Rockies?
I got a solar recharger (sans hotel walls)
I bought a Solar flashlight and towels that weren’t really made of cloth.
A purple titanium spork so as not to engage in the plastic throw away kind
Etc
I was in an altered state moving through the sections of the cavernous store.
Resisting lots of etc

I was surprised when I got out to see that I’d spent almost the entire day there
And came out to a parking ticket.

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No locking mechanism

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It seemed like a miracle or at least an answer to an unasked prayer, the way friends can be.

When I decided not to go across the hot desert but to leave the west coast from farther north, my friend volunteered to drive our bikes up North for us. I was thrilled and I ordered a 3 bike bike rack online. It didn’t come in time so at the latest moment I bought another one in a store here as my friend was leaving that night

When we unboxed the rack we both saw that there was no way to securely lock the bikes on the car so she couldn’t take them.

The next day the online bike rack came in the mail.
I put it in my car to return it.

That night my car was robbed. They took the bike rack.

 

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