In June 2011 I turned 50. Since I am getting older, I feel that I should slow down and enjoy my bike rides more. So I will being doing more solo riding and touring that will give me the time to just ride and enjoy.

The purpose of this blog is to share my ride 'events', insights and experiences with others.

Enjoy my blog and hopefully you will get something out of it that will benefit your own riding.

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Review: Oregon Coast Solo Trip

Did not complete the ride as I had planned.  Actually only made 2 1/2 days.  Don't know why my knees were bothering me so much on this ride.  I had done the Gorge ride two weeks earlier with no issues at all, same bike, same trailer and basically the same gear.  Maybe I need to do more training.

So I am planning for the same ride again next year.  This is on my bucket list so it is really something that I want to complete.  Somethings I am thinking of doing differently.

  • Don't start with an 80 mile ride on day one.
  • Plan for 40-50 days to allow for more time to sight see and enjoy the ride.
  • Plan camp sites to be closer to cities or shortly after.
  • Make sure bike is complete tuned, go over everything.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Day Three: Oregon Coast Solo Trip

Woke at a decent time this morning. Had everything packed and was on the road by 8:30. Stopped at Hill Top restaurant for breakfast, french toast, eggs and sausage,  the french toast was very good.  Back on the road about 9:30, Day was overcast with some breaks, but no moisture.

My knee is really bad today, every pedal stroke is an effort. Don't known what is wrong, I have a sharp pain under the knee cap. Want to finish this ride, been planned for a long time, but if things don't get better.....

Leaving Lincoln City via Hwy 101, traffic was not to bad and the shoulder was a decent width.  Stopped at Boiler Bay and ate a couple of packets of the apple slices I purchased last night.  Rode through Depoe Bay and on to Otter Crest Loop. The Otter Crest Loop is a nice alternative to Hwy 101,  The scenery is great along this route and traffic is very low.  The first section is uphill but is one way with a bike lane.  There are multiple pull outs for views and taking pictures.  At the Otter Crest State wayside, the road becomes two way and the bike lane ends,  but it is all down hill to Otter Rock.  Leaving Otter Rock we return to Hwy 101, higher traffic rates, but a wide shoulder.

Shortly after entering Newport the Bike Route leaves Hwy 101 and goes on Oceanview drive.  This keeps us off Hwy 101 through Newport as this portion is two lanes with no shoulder or bike lane.  This is a nice residential rode with light traffic, but has a few minor hills.

As I was winding through the neighbor hoods and the old area of Newport it became apparent that I was not going to be able complete my intended route today.  I stopped at the Whaler hotel to get a room for the night.  Called Nancy to let her know that I had to abandon the ride.

Well I was hoping to have more post and to complete the ride, but the issue with my knees was not improving and I decided it was better to abandon than to risk possibly further injury to my knees.

Day Two: Oregon Coast Solo Trip

Slept later than usual (no dogs this morning to wake me up). A little sore from yesterday, moving slow this morning. No place for breakfast this morning, had some beef jerky instead. The ride this morning starts out with the biggest hill climb on the route.

Rained most of the night, but was light enough to get everything packed up fairly dry. Had a light mist as I began the ride. 1000+ feet of climbing over 2 1/2 miles. The road was always climbing, sometimes 1 or 2 % other felt like 10 or 11%. I will have to wait to see when I download my GPS. Took my jacket off part way up, it was cool but I was generating too much heat. I was about a mile into the climb and noticed that something was rubbing on the back tire.  Appeared to be the rear fender, finally got it adjusted so that it was no rubbing.  Reached the top, put my jacket back on for the downhill ride.

The downhill was nice, "the payoff after the climb".  Towards the end of the downhill there are some nice views of the dunes, this is the Sand Lake recreation area.  Heard some off road vehicles but never saw them. Right turn onto Sand Lake road and the ride into Pacific City.

Stopped to the Pelican Brew Pub for lunch, this was my planned breakfast stop. Another rider, Steve, that I had seen at the hiker-biker camp at Cape Lookout was already there. Ordered a bowl of chili and a side Caesar. Talked to Steve for a bit, found out he was doing the same ride but had started from Astoria on Saturday.  Steve said he was riding to Newport that day, so I would not likely see him again that day.  But as we are traveling the same route with the same planned end date, I would likely see him again in the coming days.

After lunch it was a few miles on Hwy 101 then onto old Hwy 101 to Otis. This is a longer route but a gentler grade, less traffic and through an old growth forest. Just as I started this portion the rain came back as a heavy drizzle. I was wearing my wind breaker and thought it would suffice. I was soaked after about ten minutes, no reason to change clothes now. Despite the rain thus was a beautiful section of road to ride.

At Otis turned onto Hwy 18 which soon became Hwy 101, moderately heavy traffic. A few miles later a left  turn on to East Devils Lake road. This road is a nice alternate around Lincoln city and the high traffic on Hwy 101.  East Devils Lake road is all rollers with some steep hill climbs, misjudged one of these and actually had to stop because I was in the wrong gear

Made it to the camp ground around 5:30. I was debating getting a hotel but ended up sticking to my plan and camping. Got everything setup and headed out for dinner. Went to the Mcmenamins Lighthouse pub. They had sturgeon fish and chips. It was the first time I had sturgeon, it was very good, no fishy taste at all.

Tomorrow may be a challenge as my left knee has been bothering me since the start and the tennis elbow that I developed last week is not helping things. Plan to stick with the ride until my body says quit.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Day One: Oregon Coast Solo Trip

Woke up about 6am, the dogs won't let me sleep any later than that. Packed up everything into the trailer, finished getting ready and went over to Buoy Nine for breakfast. Breakfast was four slices of French Toast, sausage patty and coffee. French Toast was large slices of sourdough bread, very good.

The day was overcast but almost 60 degrees. Took the back road through Fort Stevens State Park out to Hwy 101. My map showed a side road from Sunset Beach to Surf Pines. This added a few miles, the road was there but about 1 mile from Sunset Beach it became a gated community. Turned around and went back to the original route.

Saw several other riders some going south some going North. Route through Seaside was along the promenade. It had been a while since I have been to Seaside, it sure has been built up! Back to Hwy 101 and the two large hills before Manzanita. When I had finished those hills I was ready for lunch. Stopped at the Pizza Garden in Nehalem. Very good pizza, I ate almost all of the ten inch pizza I order.

Back on the road it was starting to sprinkle. I stopped at a road side rest area filled me water bottles and put on my wind breaker as it was only a sprinkle and not actual rain. Before reaching Rockaway Beach, I put on my shoe covers. It did not look like it would let up and wet shoes are not fun.

On into Tillamook and the turn towards the Three Capes Scenic Route. The route here heads west then north west, there was a good headwind here. Decided to take the Netarts Hwy alternate route, this saved eight miles. Planned on stopping at Whiskey Creek BBQ, but they had moved. Turned around and headed to Netarts, Yelp showed they had moved to Netarts. Did not see them, stopped at the store to get directions. Picked up a few supplies for tonight. The clerk said that if I wanted better food I would find it at the Schooner. She was right I had a very good seafood pasta dinner and was also able to watch part of the basketball game.

Out into the rain, it had been rain on and off since Nehalem. It was longer to the camp ground than I expected, likely because I was worn out by now. Reached the park, set up the tent and off to the showers. Showers were nice and hot! Since it was still raining there was not much to do but go back to the tent. Called Nancy again, checked the route for tomorrow and wrote the blog. Now time for a good long sleep, no dogs to wake me in the morning. :)