Ride Date: 14 September 2011
Starting City: Bandon, OR
Ending City: Bandon, OR (Optional Loop)
Ride Stats: 69.66 miles, 3,158' of climbing, 4:59:07
Day 4 was an optional "layover day," which meant that we were to spend 2 nights in Bandon. You have the choice of either spending a lazy day in the layover town or going on on an optional out-and-back ride. Today I decided to ride. Why? Well, I couldn't pass up views like this...
Even with a "easy" 70-mile ride ahead of me, I slept in a bit and was on the road by 8:15, my latest start of the week. Today's ride was all rollers with lots of good views along the way. For the day my riding time was just under 5 hours but I spent more than 7 hours doing the entire route mostly because I stopped to take pictures like this-
Today we rode on 101 nearly all day, with the short exception of into and out of Cape Blanco State Park. The shoulder on Hwy 101 was rough quite for 6 miles south of Bandon but from there to the turnaround in Port Orford it was smooth.
Along the way I found a mother and her girls selling lemonade and hot, fresh baked chocolate chip and snicker doodle cookies, just 5 miles past rest stop. I was not quite ready for another food stop but I noted mile marker on the highway and promised to stop on the return trip.
The ride out to Cape Blanco was wonderful. The views of the coast and the tidal flats was incredible. the weather, which had to rain the night before, cleared up and kept us sunny and cool all day. At the end of the Cape Blanco State Park spur we were treated to wonderful views and clear skies. The park rangers were nice enough to give tours of the lighthouse, if you were willing to wait in line for upwards of 2 hours (hint: I wasn't).
The surf was somewhat average but the views from the lighthouse bluff were still spectacular.
As we rode along today there were countless cranberry bogs lining the roads. Cranberries have become one of the big new cash crops of the Oregon coast.
We had lunch lunch while watching the surfers at Battle Rock in Port Orford.
I found the cookie and lemonade stand and was glad to make another stop. Those warm cookies were just what the doctor ordered.
On the way back I met up with some folks that I went to church with the previous Sunday and they invited me to ride in their pace line. I was thankful for the relief from the wind but this simple act of kindness nearly became a trip-ending mistake. I broke one of my own personal rules about paceline riding: don't ride in a paceline with people who you don't know. Despite their good intentions we had a little incident. A rider hit their brakes too hard which caused a little accordion-action to happen. I had very little time to react. Thankfully I was able to unclip and do a couple of little left-foot-skips to keep myself vertical and moving along. I stayed out of the ditch and managed not to hit the asphalt.
I rode (alone) back into Bandon and decided to take it easy. A walk on the beach was in order-
For dinner that night I went down to dinner at a seafood place in old town Bandon but all the restaurants were packed with cyclists. The town itself is only a couple thousand people so when 2500+ Cycle Oregon folks roll into town the local establishments get a little crowded. I finally found a little fish fry stand on the waterfront that would serve me and had a great fish and chips platter.
That night I met up with an old friend from my days at Roseburg High, Nathaniel Hall. He and I sat and chatted for a long time and then watched the bike rodeo. It's a fun little competition put on by the bike mechanics featuring such challenging events as foot down, limbo, jousting, track stand, and the fan-favorite figure 8 race. Unfortunately none of my pictures of the event turned out very well due to the limited lighting and fast action.
The best part of the evening was the sunset. I wish I was down on the beach but through the trees would have to do...
The band that night was not very good. When they started into a Black-Eyed-Peas song I called it a night. Another early bedtime to (hopefully) get on the road by 7am. We'll see how that actually panned out...
- Cape Blanco Lighthouse
- Tidal Flats and cranberry bogs
- Surfers at lunch!
- Reminded why I hate pacelines.