It was sunny when we first left the hotel in Long Beach, but it soon got foggy. We were 19 miles from Astoria. The last 4 of which were going to be spent crossing the bridge to Astoria.
As we approached the entrance to the bridge we reviewed our strategy: Wait for an opening in traffic to start. Check your mirror to see what is coming from behind. See if there is simultaneous oncoming traffic. Put your head back down, hug the shoulder and pray you don’t join the dozens of large bird carcasses that lined the shoulder for 4 miles.
It was a big climb at the start, but then the bridge was pretty level over most of the middle section. There were some decent breaks in the traffic where it was safe to wander on the traffic side of the white line. In some places the white line on the shoulder was slightly raised and our wheels would slide a little for a moment. Very scary. I don’t remember so many dead birds on the roadside the last time. Ron thought the huge climb in the distance was a hill beyond the bridge. In reality, it was a final climb up the end of the bridge. When we got to the other side, the fog was gone and we were still alive. Just in time for second breakfast. Ron even had an omelet with hash browns. He was using his license to eat.
The next stop was in Seaside, where we had a foggy glide along the promenade. We had a nice conversation with a woman that had done a lot of cycling in Europe years ago.
As we headed for Cannon Beach, we only had one thing on our minds – a cold beer. We found some at the Pelican brewery. When we finished, Ron said he’d like to take a picture of the famous haystack rock formation. I knew the perfect place – at the back yard of my friend Drake Nicholson! I thought he was on vacation else where, but when we got to his place, his car was there, but he was not. We still used his back yard for our photo opportunity and left him a message on his phone.
A few miles down the road he called us with an offer to stay with him. We would have done it, but we could not cancel our hotel and get any refund. We thanked him and continued the final 13 miles to the hotel.
We got someone to take our picture at one of several scenic overlooks. We thought we had another 1200 feet of climbing. He told us that it was all down hill to Manzanita. He was half right. Along the way we had gorgeous views of the ocean and one scary tunnel shared with a few wide vehicles. You haven’t lived if you haven’t had a few near death experiences! Ride stats are here.
At the hotel, we went through the shower, laundry, dinner routine. Made some plans for tommorw, then rinse and repeat. Another day of adventure.
The Not So Lone Rider