Friday, September 19, 2014

9/19/14 - Garaibaldi

Rear Tire after 622 miles (now on the front)
9/19/14 - Garibaldi

I got off to a rough start this morning.  After packing up, as I went to head out things didn't feel right.  I looked back abd my rear tire was flat.  When I took off the wheel to repair the flat I was astonded to see that the tread pattern on the rear tire was completly worn off after 620 miles.  To even things out I decided I needed to rotate the tires, so now I had to remove both wheels and tires.  With the front wheel off I found the front bearings had come out of adjustment.  So add digging out the cone wrenches to adjust the bearings.  And just to make it more interesting, I could not find the cause of the original flat.

But everything is back together with the old rear tire and tube up in front where I can keep an eye on them.  I was planning to have breakfast in Garibaldi, but it turned out to be lunch instead!

One good point was as I was pushing the bike up to a good place to do the repairs a lady walked up and said "Hello Kerry."  It turned out she was one of the county people that collet the camground fees.  She told me she owed me some money, because they only charge $20 for hiker/bikers.  So my $32 campsite was actualy only $20 and I got $12 back.

9/18/14 - Seaside to Barview Campground (Garibaldi)

The Rugged Oregon Coast
9/18/14 - Seaside to Barview Campground (Garibaldi) (40 miles)
Trip miles 622

Some serious climbing today.  Three hills for a toatl of 1,800 feet.  Did OK though.  I think my legs are getting used to this.  Some great views from the tops of those hills.  There is no more heavy climing until I'm South of Neskowin (about 50 miles). 

Had to go through an uphill tunnel at Arch Cape.  They have a button you push that set off flashing lights notifing motorist that there is a bicyclist in the tunnel and speed is reduced to 30 mph.  It's still pretty scary slowly cranking your way uphil as the traffic roars by you, much of it was going a lot faster than 30 mph!

Barview is a county campground and I expected the normal $10 or so for a hiker/biker site, a little more if they don't have hiker/biker sites.  Not so here, $32 for a basic campsite.  I was tempted to continue my ride int Garibaldi to check on a motel, but I didn't.

The Haystack by Cannon Beach
Getting Ready to Enter the Tunnel
The $32 Campsite
Barview Campground Beach

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

9/17/14 - Astoria to Seaside

I got to remember to take those knee braces off before someone takes my picture!
9/17/14 - Astoria to Seaside (20.5 miles)
Trip miles 582

Not much mileage today.  I got a late start from Astoria (updating blog).  When I got to Seaside I was able to complete my "North (Oregon) Coast Craft Beer Trail" requirement (8 breweries) and collect my official souvenir pint glass!  While at the tourism center (the pint glass distributor) the lady there gave me some ideas of things to see while in Seaside, so I hung around a bit.  While riding down the "Promenade", the equivalent of San Diego's boardwalk, I met a guy on a cruiser that invited me to spend the night in his back yard.  Since it was already raining lightly, I accepted.  This allowed me to have supper at one of the local restaurants, "Dundee's Bar & Grill" instead of cooking supper in the dark and rain.

Tomorrow, continuing South.

Seaside, the end of the Lewis & Clark Trail.
They made salt here to preserve food for
their trip back.
The Seaside Beach
Heading to the beach, Seaside, Oregon

9/16/14 - Astoria

In front of the Columbia River Maritime Museum, Astoria, OR

9/16/14 - Astoria (9.5 miles)

Changed rooms in the motel to get a 1st floor room (makes it a lot easier with the bike).  Sent a package home with some souveniers and some unneeded equipment.  I really don't have that much unneed stuff this trip unless you count the tools and spare parts.  That's the stuff you may not need at all, or can make the difference between walking or riding to the next town in the event of a mechanical problem.

Visited the Columbia River Maritime Museum and the Lightship Columbia.  I don't think I would have liked to have been stationed on a ship like that.  I would have spent more time at the museum, but they kicked me out because they wanted to go home!

The Lightship Columbia
Early Salmon fishing boat
The camera's level!  Crossing the bar under rough conditions

9/15/14 Gnat Creek Campground to Astoria

The route so far - Vancouver, BC, Canada to Astoria, OR, USA
9/15/14 Gnat Creek Campground to Astoria (27 miles)
Trip total 551 miles

The ride to Astoria was pretty uneventful, other than I had used up all my water for the previous evenings meal.  Fortunatly there was only one relatively short hill before I got to Knappa, where I had breakfast and filled my water bottles up.

In Astoria is Pier 39, which used to be a Bumble Bee cannery.  It's now a resturant, canvas shop, laundermat, and cannery museum.  So I got to poke around the,very casual, museum while I did my laundry.

I'm going to spend tomorrow in Astoria so that I can visit their maritime museum here (more boats).

9/14/14 Welcome to Oregon - Longview, WA to Gnat Creek Campground, OR

The Picture Says it All
9/14/14 Welcome to Oregon - Longview, WA to Gnat Creek Campground, OR (33 miles)
525 Trip Miles

West to Astoria!  Well not quite since I'm still 19 miles short.  The ride across the Lewis and Clark Bridge was still a pretty good climb, and there was a lot of traffic, but there was a good sholder all the way.  There were two climbs today, Rainier Pass and Clatsop Crest for a total of 1,420 feet.

Gnat Creek Campground was the last one before Astoria so I figured I'd stop here.  There are only three sites, and they were all taken.  However, one couple invited me to share their site and I accepted.  I didn't think to get any groceries at Westport, so supper consited of my emergency rations, Ramon noodles with tuna fish and fine aged water (vintage earlier that afternoon)!

Tomorrow I will be in Astoria.  I may spend the night there so I can get some laundry done.

The Oregon Border
Where the Forest Ends Up
On a Boat to ???
So much for a flat ride along the river

Sunday, September 14, 2014

9/13/14 Castle Rock to Longview (19 miles)

"Drift" Fishing on the Cowlitz River.
They motor upstream, then drift down with the current.
9/13/14 Castle Rock to Longview (19 miles)
Trip Total 492 miles

No problems last night.  Camping like that does remind you how convenient it is to have a real sink and a table.

I had camped near the castle Rock Bike Skills Park.  It's an off-road skills park with all kinds of challenges.  By the time I was ready to pull out they were setting up for "Bike Blowout 2014".  This was basically an off-road skills event for kids.  I deferred trying to take my loaded Miyata over any of the course!

Went to breakfast at Lacey's Cafe.  It wasn't very busy, but I don't know why.  The food was good, the prices reasonable, and the owner friendly.  I guess I was hungry.  After having an eggs, sausage, and hash browns breakfast, I then ordered a French Toast breakfast!

The cafe owner told me that the Adventure Cyclist route out of Castle rock was quite hilly.  Since I wanted to go to Longview she suggested another route that paralleled I-5, Pleasant Hill Road.  It was really a good route with minimal traffic.

In Longview I attempted to find a bike shop that could help me resolve the clicking noise coming from my bottom bracket area.  One shop I couldn't find (they went out of business).  I convinced the second shop to loan me a used set of pedals and was able to prove the pedals weren't the problem, but they couldn't do any more.  At the third, Bob's Bike Shop, the manager, Genece Cooper, was kind enough to set aside other work to take a look at my bike.  After removing my cranks she discovered that the fixed-cup side of my cartridge bottom bracket had worked loose.  Some grease and re-torquing of the bottom bracket and all my clicking noises seem to be cured!  Thank you Genece!

Since it was close to 5 by the time we finished with the bike repair I decided to spend the night in Longview, so another night of luxury (relatively) in a motel.  Two people here in Longview have said the Adventure Cyclist route to Astoria is very busy with truck traffic and has suggested I cross over to Oregon on the bridge here in Longview.  So tomorrow I will be taking their advice and heading into Oregon by way of the Lewis and Clark Bridge.


Saturday, September 13, 2014

9/12/14 Toledo to Castle Rock (31 miles)

I-5 Crossing the Cowlitz River (Note I'not on I-5)
9/12/14 Friday - Toledo to Castle Rock (31 miles)
Trip Total 471miles

Another "just traveling" day.  I'll be glad when I get to the coast. This area is a lot of farmland, with not a lot to see.  I did travel along the Cowlitz River for about 10 miles today which added some interest.  I got to see a salmon leap to catch a bug, but he wouldn't repeat the performance for me when I had the camera.

Tonight I'm "guerilla" camping right by the Cowlitz River.  It's an area suggested by a Castle Rock policeman.  He said fishrmen camp there all the time.

Tomorrow I should reach the Columbia River, the dividing line between Washington and Oregon.  It may take me another day to actually get across but it still exciting to have completly traversed Washington.


This is Farm Country
Where your Washington Christmas Trees come from
Goats along the way

Friday, September 12, 2014

9/11/14 Maytown to Lewis and Clark State Park (Toledo) (40 miles)

Camping among one of the last stands of old forest - Lewis and Clark State Park
9/11/14 Maytown to Lewis and Clark State Park (Toledo) (40 miles)

Trip total 440 miles.

Chilly this morning.  I didn't want to get out of my sleeping bag.  Glad I brougth my sweater!

Another day of mostly just riding.  I would have made better time, but I got lost in Centralia looking for the bike shop (it doesn't exist!), and the Adventure Cycling map is wrong!  When I finally found what one guy described as the "bike store" (it was a sporting goods store with some bike accessories) the owner looked at the Adventure Cycling map and said "Do you like to climb?  That route has a major hill in it."  He suggested an alternate route that was shorter, and less hilly that turned out great!

Got to camp late (8:30) and had to set up in the dark ..., but I am here.  The park is about 8 miles North of Toledo.

PT Bob, are you reading?  Forget the Jambolaga with Cheese I had the other night.  Get the Zatarains Original Jambolaya mix and Jimmy Dean's precooked  Pork Sasuage and Bacon Crumbles.  Will make your nose run and your tummy happy.  Serves 5 according to the package, or one cycletourist (2 if your friendly and willing to share).  :-)  Bob the cat ... you can try it too, ask Val or Malcom.

Today I bought a little keyboard to go with my tablet.  I'll have to see how it is going to work out, but sofar I'm pleased.


Thursday, September 11, 2014

9/10/14 Shelton to Millersylvania State Park (Maytown)

Shelton - Any town that has a nice old Shay Locomotive can't be all bad!
9/10/14 Shelton to Millersylvania State Park (Maytown)
42 miles (401 trip miles)

Not much scenery today,  just pushing miles.  I'm going to try Adventure Cyclists' recommendation for crossing the Columbia, at Cathlamet.  This avoids the Astoria Bridge, which I really didn't like the last time I crossed it.  However, their route goes West from Shelton to Elma, then East to Centralia.  This adds about 25 miles to the route.   So today I struck out on my own and went straight down 101.  It was noisy with not much to look at, but definitely shorter. Tonight I am about 15 miles North of Centralia.

I got into the campground just as it was getting dark.  I couldn't find a grocery store before reaching camp so it's Ramen noodles and Tuna fish for supper tonight.

9/9/14 Belfair State Park to Shelton

Old Alpha-Romero Sprint on the road to Shelton
9/9/14 Belfair State Park to Shelton
33 miles (359 trip miles)

Well maybe not quite the route I took before.  I Started off from Belfair on 106 (my previous route) but then the Adventure Cycling route took me up away from the Hood Canal to Mason Lake.  What a climb!  I had to push the bike for the first 1/2 mile with another 3 miles of serious climbing.  At least there was very little traffic.

I found a barber in Shelton so I got a much needed haircut.  Then, since I never got lunch, I had an early supper.  After supper my body was rebelling against going further.  There didn't seem to be any campgrounds in striking distance so I ended up spending the night in luxury (compared to camping) at the Shelton Inn.

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

9/8/14 Kitsap Memorial State Park to Belfair State Park (Belfair)

Home, Sweet Home; At least for the Night
9/8/14  Kitsap Memorial State Park to Belfair State Park (Belfair)
40 miles

I now am on the route I traveled 11 years ago.  Right now I am about 18 miles beyond Bremerton, at Belfair.  This is at the tip of the hook at the end of the Hood Canal.  I'll have to backtrack about three miles tomorrow, but this was the only campground in the area.  Today was the first day I actually got to set up the tent while it was still daylight.  Tomorrow I'll be heading further South towards Elma. We'll see how far I get.

9/7/14 Port Townsend to Kitsap Memorial State Park (by Poulsbo)

Along the bike path leading out of Port Townsend
Port Townsend to Kitsap Memorial State Park (by Poulsbo)
37 miles

Got a late start today.  Bob suggested that I stop at Safeway for breakfast.   Good suggestion.   The breakfast burrito was good, cheap, and plentiful.  At the Starbucks (in Safeway) they had seating with AC power, and Safeway had open Internet.  I got caught up on two days worth of posting.  But, I didn't get out of there until 12:00 noon!

Worked my way South along the West side of Peuget Sound and across the Hood Canal Bridge; and I only got lost once!  I am now about 20 miles North of Bremeton, on the South side of the Hood Canal.   I'm not sure where I'll spend tomorrow night because I don't see much in the way of campgrounds in the area.

Sunday, September 7, 2014

9/6/14 Oak Harbor to Port Townsend. 21 miles

Boats, boats, boats!  The Port Townsend Wooden Boat Festival
9/6/14 Oak Harbor to Port Townsend.  21 miles

No problems spending the night, just the sound of the water lapping at the shore.  Awoke at 6:30 when two ladies with a buch of equipment.  They were there to set up a half-way rest stop for a century ride.

On the ferry to Port Townsend I met another cyclist, Don, who told me there was a big Wooden Boat Festival in Port Townsend.  Don had three tickets, but his wife and son couldn't attend, so he gave me one of his extra tickets.  Another boat festival, that's the end of riding today!  Lots of beautiful boats, some of which I saw at the Victoria Classic Boat Festival.

As I was leaving the festival a guy on a nice Miyata 610 rode up and was admiring my 618GT.  His name was Bob and he owns a bike shop in Port Townsend.  He invited me to spend the night at his place, and since most places were booked up due to the festival, I accepted.  He let me do my laundry, shower, and sleep on the couch.   He has a great collection of bikes, many of them touring oriented.  And I fret about having more than one touring bike!

Today I'm heading towards Bremerton and will probably stop around Kitsap Memorial Park.  That should put me in a good position to head through Bremerton and out again the next day.

Big Boats, the Victoria V

Little Boats

And Music

9/5/14 Anacordes to Oak Harbor.

Deer in the morning at Washington Park
9/5/14  Anacordes to Oak Harbor.

Well, I didn't make it to Port Towensend.  I only got to Oak Harbor, a distance of 26 miles.  The hills are killing me, even with my low gears!  I'm currently at Joseph Whidbey State Park, whìch I found out was a day use only when I got here.  Since it was getting dark I decided to stay anyway.  I hope I don't get kicked out.

I finally got rid of the box I have been lugging since Friday Harbor.  It's been a real hassle trying to swing my leg over the bike with that box on top of the load.

When I got up this morning there was a momma deer and two fawns haning around.  They seemed very content there and didn't seem too concerned about me at all.

As I get to some of the more remote areas of the coast I may not be able to post as regularly.  I'm doing this as a memo and then will post it when I get Internet access.   The pictures have been giving me a lot of grief,  and so I forgive me if I don't post as many.

Deception Pass.  Look at that current!

Friday, September 5, 2014

9/4/14 San Juan Island to Anacortes Island

On the ferry to Anacortes
Decided to forgo Orcas Island.  Not that much to see and the ferry would not have gotten me there until 7:00PM.  Then there would be a 15 mile uphill ride to the nearest campground.  Instead I opted to go straight to Anacortes Island, arriving at7:30, but the nearest campground is only 3/4 mile.

Thursday, September 4, 2014

9/3/14 San Juan Island

Roche Habor on San Juan Island

Today I left most of my gear at Val and Malcom's and explored the island.  First I went North up to Roche Harbor, where a very large lime mining operation once was.  First stop was the mausoleum of the McMillin family, the owners of the lime operation.  A very weird place.  All kinds of symbolism.  Each of the family members are buried beneath those chairs.

The McMillin Mausoleum
Then I went to Roche Harbor itself.  In the leftmost building of the leading picture, Peggy and I, and the rest of the Venture Yacht Club had dinner in the upper story to celebrate Peggy's and my 25th anniversary.  Of course Peggy probably remembers it best for the cannon they shoot off every evening as they lower the flag!

Someone's got to do it!
Fawn & Momma

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

9/1/14 Back in the US of A

Welcome to Friday Harbor, Washington, USA
Well I'm back in the USA, here at Friday Harbor, in the San Juan Islands, Washington.  The ride up from Victoria to where I caught the ferry in Sidney was uneventful except that I lost my spare tire somewhere along the way.  I'll have to see if I can get another one when I'm by a bike shop somewhere.  Their is only one ferry a day to Friday Harbor and it didn't leave Sidney until 6:00 pm.  So I arrived when it was just about dark and still didn't have a place.  The customs officer said there was something at the fairgrounds, but didn't know any details.  Anyway, since it was close I rode out there to check it out.  Turns out it is only for RVs with prior reservations.  It was just about dark now and there is a little picnic pavilion with a wide bench so I decided to take my chances and spread my sleeping bag out on the bench and hope nobody kicks me out in the middle of the night!

I survived the night with  nobody kicking out so it all worked out OK.  This morning when I went breakfast I was invited to join a couple, Val and Malcom, who live here on San Juan Island.  We talked about bikes and boats and they invited me to stay at a little "camp cabin" they have on there land.  It started to rain around noon so I called Malcom to confirm that they were serious.   He said "Sure, come on out".  I slogged through what be now was heavy rain any was pretty well soaked by the time I found there place.  Val showed me to this cute little cottage they built to stay in while they were building their house.
Nothing much but a bed and a small sitting area, but it sure is cute, and dry!

They invited me up to their house when I got dried off.  They are both musicians that play at contra dances, so we also got to discuss music and the assortment of instruments they have.  Val and Malcom are just a really nice couple!  They also invited me for supper and said I was welcome to leave my gear here tomorrow so I could explore the island unloaded.  I think I'll do that, especially since the weather is supposed to be nicer tomorrow.

Sunday, August 31, 2014

Still in Victoria

One of the many picturist ponds at Beacon Hill Park
Today I took the bike and roamed a little farther than I could by foot.  I went to 8wBeacon Hill Park which is truly fantastic.  I also rode about 10 miles along the coast to a community called Oak Bay.  Lots of quaint victorian houses and picturesque secenery.

Sorry, but the internet here is really slow so not many pictures.
A totem at Becan Hill Park
Just for Tara