Day 7 Port Orford to Brookings
After waking up we
decided to go see what
We seated ourselves at the same table we
Our waitress looked at us and asked if we
After a little time to let our breakfast settle we headed on down the road. The weather was beautiful and there was again a light wind from the north. What we did not know at this point was that it would also be the hilliest day of the ride.
By this time on the ride we were both getting tired. Keith was complaining about the place where the rider meets the bike, and my quads were still sore from the push up the big hill outside of Charleston. In reviewing the map now I count one big 3 mile, 1000 foot climb and 17 little, one mile up, one mile down, type of hills on this day. This part of the ride is also very sparsely populated. There is basically nothing but a few houses between Port Orford, and Gold Beach (the half way point) and then nothing again from Gold Beach to Brookings. Nothing that is except for the dinosaur park in the middle of this large nowhere.
I cannot speak for Keith, but I for one was ready to just get to the end and have this week of riding over with. The vistas were beautiful, and we stopped a few times for a Red Bull and/or a Cliff Bar. As I rolled down the road by bottom bracket started ticking with every peddle stroke, and soon the ticking turned into clunking. Nothing I could do would stop the incessant tick, tick, tick.
We stopped at a store in Gold Beach where we stocked up on water, and instead of a full lunch eat a Cliff Bar, and Red Bull and some water. We had the big hill to go up just two miles from Gold Beach and I did not want to have a bunch of food in my stomach.
The hill was long, and hard, but very doable. As I said by this point I was weary to the bone. Keith and I stopped for a quick break at the top of the hill and then proceeded to descend on what for me would be the fasted decent of the week. I looked down at my computer and it read 49mph. I wanted to squeeze that last mph out of it so that it would read 50. I tucked my chin into my chest and put my seat in my belly, and sure enough the computer read 50mph. That is when I started thinking about the fact that I had an extra 20 lbs on the bike in the panniers, and started thinking about what would happen if I had a problem going 50. I decided to sit up and slow down a little. Keith later told me he had the same thoughts when he hit about 43mph.
As we continued up and down the smaller hills we played leap frog with the green sleeves group several times, we would pass them, then they would pass us, and so on and so forth. On the last “big” hill of the day I told them, as we leap frogged past them, that it was the last and they said they sure hoped so.
Finally we hit the city limits of Brookings, but where was Brookings? We rolled another mile down the road, and still no significant signs of a city. Then BAM, I had a blowout. As it turns out we were just one mile away from the hotel and here I am with a blown rear tire. I did not see anything in the road, but something sure got me because after fixing the rear tire and by the time we did the last mile to the hotel my front time was flat also. Whatever had gotten my back tire had also just barley punctured my front.
We finally rolled into the hotel, and there waiting for us was my brother-in-law Geoff. He was to give us a ride home the following day. So, with the ride behind us, and an evening of festivities ahead of us, we set out for the local grocery store to stock up on party supplies.
After a good dinner at Lee’s Dragon Chinese restaurant we decided to hit the pool and hot tub. Keith started to head out of the room with a towel and I told him that he did not need to bring one because the hotel directory said that we were supposed to get pool towels at the lobby. So the joke then was that Keith was breaking the “towel” rule. Well as it turns out the joke was on me, because before the pool adventure was over I would break about 3 or 4 of the “pool rules” myself.
First off I brought a martini with me to the pool breaking the “no food or beverages at the pool” rule. Then as I was going from the hot tub to the pool to cool off, breaking the “no running at the pool” rule along the way, my left foot slipped on the brick boarder of the pool and I basically did the splits into the pool dragging my right leg and foot along the rough top of the pools edge.
As soon as I hit the water I knew that I had hurt myself, and I climbed out of the pool to see big scrapes on my knee, foot and a large chunk of skin peeled back off the corner of my right bit toe. It was not bleeding though, so I hopped back into the hot tub, breaking the “no open wounds in the pool” rule. I looked at the toe several more times while I was in the hot tub and it was not bleeding. As soon as I got out of the hot tub though, and took about 5 steps, I must have opened the wound the rest of the way because it started bleeding profusely.
Well that was enough pool action for one night and we headed in to settle down for the night. The room we had was a “family suite” that included two queen beds in the main room, and a separate room with another queen bed. Since Keith had plunked down the card for the room he got the room to himself.
The next day we had planned on riding the last 7 miles to the California boarder, and Geoff was to pick us up there and drive us home. Well by this time my toe was extremely sore, and there was no way I was going to get it into my riding shoe. And I also still had a flat front tire.
The next morning Geoff and I sent Keith on his way and went to the grocery store to get me items to patch my wounds. When we got back to the room I cleaned up and patched up my foot and we loaded our bags and my bike on Geoff’s truck and headed for the boarder. We met Keith at the boarder, where he said he had been waiting for about 10 minutes, and loaded up his bike. As we were loading up his bike the green sleeves group came along and we said goodbye to them for the last time. They were going to try and get to Baja, but said they might not make it because funds were getting low.
Once we loaded up we climbed in the truck and took the 7 hour drive back to Portland.