If you have been reading the blog for the last couple of months, you know that I am very happy being a coast kid! Living in Lincoln City Oregon is just a great place to be. Where else can I ride my bike to a lighthouse, and then sit and watch whales…
Not once in the last two months have I regretted moving. However, living in a small town on the coast does have its occasional challenges…
Last month, the MacBook choked and puked. It would simply not boot up. I did all I could online with Apple to fix it myself, to no avail. Finally they told me we had to take it to an Apple Store. Go figure, there ain’t one on the coast, so we had to go to Portland. Luckily we were going there already for the Reach the Beach ride.
Then there is only ONE bike store. Their selection of tubes and miscellaneous items just is not extensive. So Amazon and trips to the big city come into play.
And, today, we were reminded there is only one road between the cities….
We have found that its much more convenient to go 25 miles south to Newport and grocery shop at Fred Meyer, than it is to shop here in town. We can get almost everything we want there (It is your one stop shopping place!) and for the few items they don’t have, there is a Safeway right next door. One weekend morning each week we make the run for the week’s worth of food. Today, on a rainy Saturday, was that day.
We got in and out quick and were heading back home. The rains, which had been torrential on the way south, had essentially stopped. We were almost to the top of Cape Foulweather when traffic stopped dead! We moved to the right and stopped, and after 5 minutes, turned off the engine and settled in. The State Patrol was already on the scene, but we were too far back to know what happened.
Well, Michelle is nothing is not ingenious, she quickly fired up the police scanner app on the phone. And, just as we thought, there was a car accident ahead. But the news kept getting worse. Being an insurance claims person, I just assume people will be hurt in an accident. In the worst ones I have seen, a life flight helicopter is requested.
In this one, they were asking for 3 helicopters… I have NEVER heard of that happening. I’ve been searching online since then to find out what happened (all we know is a Chevy Cavalier somehow tangled up with a Lincoln of some type). Honestly hope all will be ok.
After about 20 minutes, the trooper everyone to just turn around and go back south. Clearly the road would not be open for quite a while. (One of the life flight choppers was 51 minutes out and they were still trying to find a 3rd…)
We turned around and no idea what the plan was. We had groceries in the car and our one way north was gone.
And then it hit me, “WAIT! I KNOW A WAY!””
Y’all know I am a cyclist…
And one of the things we cyclists do is discover, and then share, routes between places that are much less traveled. There are times this knowledge comes in handy! More than once in Seattle traffic I was able to avoid serious traffic issues by using a route I had on the bike.
I realized as we were heading back to Newport, I knew an alternate route! The Kernville loop cuts inland near the south end of Newport on Hwy 20, then cuts north, through the tiny town of Siletz and back to Hwy 101 a mile south and 15 miles north of the accident!! OK it was going to be about a 40 miles detour…. But it would get us home!
It was kinda fun taking Michelle along this route. She hadn’t been to this part of the coast before.
She got to see my cool cow.
As well as old mossy trees
and some very pretty river views. (I am reminded that it is MUCH harder to stop for photos in a car than it is on a bike!)
And then we added to the list of things that I happen here that had never happened to me before…
We rounded a corner and there was something way up ahead in the road. As we got closer, it was some kind of road kill and there was a turkey vulture sitting on top of it having lunch! (this guys brother!)
I was able to skirt around him and he hopped off for a bit. After we passed him, I looked n the mirror and he hopped back to finish lunch.
Soon after we were back at highway 101 and then home. We left at 8:30 and got home just shy of 3 hours later….
Its been 3 hours since the time we got home, and I just read that the road is still closed. I hope everyone will be ok.
But, I am SO happy that since we’ve moved here, I have been traveling all over the area with the bike. There is no better way to explore than on 2 wheels and today those explorations got us home safely!