Once again, the call of the ocean has been answered! Michelle and I are taking a well deserved break, and hanging out in Cannon Beach. Folks the view from the room does NOT suck!
However, as we all know, very rarely do I SIT during an entire vacation. So being me, I decided a long bike ride was in order…
No this is where the wife loving me part comes into play. She is recovering from mouth surgery AND dealing with a cold. Poor thing is NOT running at 100%. But, she was very happy to let me ride my bike to Cape Meares Lighthouse 53 miles away
AND more importantly come pick me up… I am a very lucky man!
But, that being said, we are still on vacation! This meant waking up early was NOT an option. Plus there was a little think called breakfast needed! We let the sun wake us up, and went to PignPancake!! 12 silver dollar sized cakes later and I was ready to go!
The route took me south on OR Hwy 101, to Tillamook, then veered off to go to the lighthouse.
When I hit the road at 9 AM, it was gorgeous out!
and initially I was simply riding through town.
Right before starting this, I spotted 3 whales! And they were heading right for our view from the hotel room! A quick call to Michelle alerted her and she spotted them as well. Our streak is alive, we see gray whales every time we are at the Oregon Coast!
After leaving the town, you are immediately on why 101. There is a pretty decent shoulder and people on the road are used to bikes and are pretty darn courteous about it. HOWEVER, for those who do NOT ride on busy roads, I have been told this can be a bit daunting! For me though, it’s just a normal ride…
Well, maybe not 100% normal. There is this tunnel…. There are two along the coast, and wouldn’t you know it, they both go UPHILL for southbound riders! The trick is to push the “Bikes in Tunnel” button with starts the flashing lights, and then pedal like hell! I was damn tired on the other side….
Then, of course there is the weather. As I got to the top of the hills outside of town it got to be a bit foggy!
I was kinda bummed about this. Normally, these turn outs provide excellent views and excellent potential for whale watching. NOT so much this time
The good news, though, is once past the crest, I had a LONG down hill AND some flatter roads afterwards. I wasn’t in an all fired hurry, but I didn’t want to spend the entire day away from Michelle. I wasn’t hurrying, but I did want to get done relatively early.
I was NOT in so much of a hurry that I missed out on the scenery though. Frequent readers have learned I have a strange sense of humor. On the GoPro video you can hear me busting out laughing after seeing this sign. Somehow having a recycling center right next to a cemetery just cracks me up!
A little further along, I hit the town or Rockaway Beach. I’ve been driving through this town for close to 30 years now, and I have never checked out the view of the ocean. Imagine my surprise when I got to the overlook and saw this!
These are the Twin Rocks! Pretty damn cool!
This is one of the distinct advantage to bike travel. Unlike a car which travels 35 – 60 on this road, and can’t turn in at a split second, on a bike it is easy as can be! In fact, these next few photos were taken in just that manner. I saw something cool and stopped to take the picture!
Not to mention the GIANT mound of oyster shells!
Once I hit Tillamook, I called Michelle to let her know where I was. I honestly had no idea how far it was to the Lighthouse, but I took a wildass shot in the dark and said 1.5 hours. Damned if I was NOT dead on!
This part of the road followed hwy 131. A less busy strip, but also a smaller shoulder. Again, there were no issues at all with vehicle, but I did decide once to hop off the road into a shallow dirt area. It was on a long steep hill, a car coulda passed me easy, but the semi coming up behind me woulda been stuck waiting for a better spot.
I know there are some riders who are militant about holding the lane, but that aint me. 1) he is a lot bigger than me, 2) he was stuck working, while I was on vacation, and 3) it just seemed like the right thing to do. I had a wait a total of 90 seconds for him to pass, with a wave of thanks I might add, and then I was heading up the road again.
I will admit, the last climb was a bit hard, but the reward is worth it as you will see.
As I was walking to lock up my bike, a car stopped and an older gentleman drove up to me. In broken English (He was from Germany it turns out) he said, “You GOOD rider! I pass you 3 times on road now you are here! I ride long time ago in Germany! Good JOB! You Good rider!” And with that, he was gone! Made my day!
Fifteen minutes later, Michelle pulled up with a great sammich AND a Diet Mtn Dew! DAMN that was good! We then went up into the lighthouse together.
You will notice how small it is, but since it sits so far up on the hill, size doesn’t matter
The day wasn’t quite finished though! On the way down we saw these guys flying free
AND of course, Michelle deserved a reward for her long drive for a silly hubby!
53 miles, and more importantly, a day full of smiles and memories! Like the wind!