Mesa to Pitt 2015

Mesa to Pitt 2015
Mesa to OBX

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Port Orford, Oregon to Brookings Oregon. (Almost! ) October 15-16

Tues. Oct. 15......55 miles in 5 hours......THIS is the way I expected riding the Pacific Coast and US 101 would be. Until today, 101 has been just far enough off the coast that it wasn't visible, unless it ran into a harbor town. I rode with the ocean in my sight for 80% of the time today. The wind that I was warned about on this stretch didn't exist, except maybe a tailwind, and the sun was shining all day, temps in the 60's. The first six miles out of Port Orford, 101 was right next to the beach, and sea stacks and blue water were visible for miles. Then, Mt Humbug (I'm not making this up), got in the way, and 101 took a very quick turn along a pristine creek, and through an old growth forest for about four miles. It still blows me away how I'm at the ocean one minute, and riding through mountains and forests, literally in a few minutes. After I circumvented Mt. Humbug on 101, the next 17 miles was coastline, with some forested sections until I came to Old Coast Road, as I entered Gold Beach. The Old Coast Road is a narrow, beat up, old road that took me into town, past a sheep farm and some residences. Once again, it was weird to be able to take a picture of a sheep farm, with the ocean in the background. So different. Gold Beach itself is a nice little tourist town, not overly commercial, with great sand beaches, and the exit of the Rogue River from the land into the sea. I crossed a bridge over the Rogue, and headed up a pretty serious incline that took me over 700 ft above sea level. There was something that made that climb unique, because I could look off to my right, through the pines, and see the Pacific Ocean. The rest of the ride left the ocean, and was the typical rolling 101. I climbed over 3300 ft on today's ride, and it was all long and gradual grades after the one big climb to through  the Cape Sebastian Scenic Corridor, to Cape Sebastian. I climbed a few hundred feet more than I needed to, to see the Cape Sebastian Overlook, and it was a disappointment, but at least I checked it out. The inclines on 101 were never ending, and sometimes they weren't that gradual, as I hit 41 mph going down one of them. My legs felt pretty good considering the attacking of some of the shorter climbs I did yesterday. No attacking today though, just survival of one climb at a time.
Somewhere along the line, I got a text from Pam, saying that she was broken down, on the side of the road, about five miles from our destination of Brooking.  She was in the process of dealing with that when I pulled up to the RV.  Lights started lighting up on the dashboard telling her to shut down the engine, so she pulled into a weigh station, and called Good Sam road assistance about finding a repair man. In the meantime, cops started showing up and asking when she could get out of the weigh station because they wanted to open it. The whole process was complicated by the fact that there was no cell phone reception in that spot. Every time she wanted to communicate she had to get in the Jeep and drive a half a mile down the road. By the time I got there, a mechanic was on the way, and all the proper authorities had been notified about us being there. 
 A mechanic finally came about 5:30, and he looked just like Curly from the Three Stooges. He knew nothing about the antifreeze leak we had near the Aquahot hot water/heater system we have, so we spent the night in the weigh station, and he hooked us up with another mechanic, who came out the next morning. He knew enough to get us back on the road, but we have no hot water or furnace, until we find a technician, probably much nearer to San Francisco, a week or two off. That means no hot showers, washer, and heating water to do the dishes for a while. We could have gone inland to Medford Oregon, but it would require driving on the one road that connects this area of the coast to inland towns, and  it is not a safe road for an RV of our size. After much discussion, debate, mind changing, and research , we decided that it wasn't worth the trip, and we pulled into a campground right on the ocean. We had a quick lunch, and spent the day walking the beach, investigating sea stacks, rocks, cliffs, marine life of all sorts, and watching the sun set over the harbor and ocean . It was much less stressful than driving for three hours on a narrow road with cliffs and drop offs, getting the work done, and having to drive back on the same road. We just chilled out, and we get hot water when we get hot water. ( it was unfortunate that when Pam and I took showers at the campground, the ladies room had no hot water, but the men's did! Ouch!

As we left town on 101, there was a road that turned off towards the beach.

Mountains and ocean

At a place called "Dinosaur Gardens"

Southern Oregon shoreline

Sheep with ocean in the background

Don't think this boat will make another trip!

Bridge over the Rogue

Light fog rolling in in the distance

Bike just checking out the view!  And hoping that Mike doesn't steer it off the cliff!

Let me tell you how high up it is from the motorhome!!

This is definitely not the Atlantic coastline!

Back home people pay to have these grasses planted in their gardens - here they just grow wild!

Walking on the beach and looking up at the cliffs

As we walked the beach, there was a huge wall of rock with this little doorway.  At high tide, this area is under water.

Notice the "stuff" on the rock walls?!

They are mussels!!  The light colored stuff is what the mussels come out of.

As the tide goes out, all sorts of this are left in the rocks - like this starfish and lettice seaweed.  Tide comes in and all are happy!

This thing is living!  There were lots of little ones that looked like mouths, but this one was huge!

Mike in his man cave!

Sitting in our campsite watching the sunset!

As the sun was setting, we also watched the boats coming into the harbor that was located behind our campground

The sun and its reflection!

Looking down the beach as the fog drifts in.  Notice all the logs on the beach.  This is how it's been all along the coastline since Washington!

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