Mesa to Pitt 2015

Mesa to Pitt 2015

Monday, November 11, 2013

Point Arena to Bodego Bay California November 6

62.5 miles in 6:20.  Wed. Nov. 6.....after a comfortable night at the Inn, I was up and ready to put in a big day at 7:30 AM. I'm not usually that enthusiastic at that time of day, but I had to make Bodego Bay, because of a lack of places to stay along the coast at this time of year, and I knew I had some climbing to do. I went to the breakfast room and was wolfing down my toast, when another biker wandered in. He stayed at the inn also, but I did not see him riding yesterday. He was an Aussie, older than me, and a hell of an accent. It was interesting to listen to, so we talked for a short time. He told me that he has a bad heart, and couldn't ride with me because he couldn't get his heart rate too high. It turns out that he is doing this trip against doctors orders, but wasn't going to sit around and wait to die. He said his heart could blow out at any time, so I was thinking he was better off without me, also.
It started out sunny and about 50 degrees, but it warmed up into the 70's real fast, seemingly aided by the climb out of Port Arena. There was no tailwind to cool me as there has been for two days, and I think I even got a little sunburn. Rt 1 followed the coast all day, and that made for some great scenery, dominated by coves, cliffs, and huge, powerful waves exploding on the rocks as a steady companion to my thoughts. There was very little traffic until I got closer to Bodego Bay, and it's a good thing, because there were virtually no shoulder between me and my demise over the cliff, therefore there was no guardrail to impede my view. Even the ocean was always close, I still alternated between resort ranches, residential, cabins, farmland, and forested state parks. Salt Point State Park provided some shade and a short distance away from the coastline. I heard sea lions twice, once while pedaling in the forested Salt Point Park, which really seemed surreal. One thing that each mile had in common was the constant rolling up and down, hill after hill after hill. The most special one was about 40 miles into the ride, up to Fort Ross, a fort built by Russian explorers. It was about a 600 ft climb, which seemed like more with that extra 20 lbs on my back wheel. From the top, the view really got spectacular, as I rode along that sheer 600 ft drop off to the ocean with a view that was as good as any I have had in over 10,000 miles. The sun was bright, fog nonexistent, traffic light, and I tried to soak it all in without stopping to take too many pictures. This section contributed greatly to my 4300 ft ascent, as well as the 4300 descent, that didn't take nearly as long as the ascents. 4300 ft is pretty close to as much as I have ever done in one day. At the top of the biggest hill, the Sonoma State Beach Park began, and ran all the way to Bodega Bay, providing developed beach areas and parking and picnicking areas for miles. I began to see boaters, surfers, jet skis, kayaks, paddleboarders, and beach combers, all using the facilities.
I rolled into Bodega Bay and stopped at the first place I saw, the Bodega Bay Inn, which wasn't anything like my accommodations the night before. It was a bit of a worn out dump, but still overcharged me, for a room with no shampoo and broken curtains. The whole town was a fishing village right on the bay, with no sidewalks or room at all for a pedestrian to make their way around town. It is built on a hill and stretched out so even though there are only 950 residents, it was a heck of a walk from one side of town to the other. I wandered for a while on tired legs, and found a fish and chips place where two raccoons walked right up to me as I ate on the outdoor patio. I was on the less touristy side of town, so there wasn't much else to chose from. The town's claim to fame seems to be that it was the setting for Alfred Hitchcock's movie, 'The Birds,' back in the seventies. As I walked, I wasn't attacked, fortunately, by the birds, but the raccoons while I was eating were threatening!

No mushroom pickers???  Only in Cali!

Surfer art!

Next 110 miles?!!  Road was not good, but beautiful!

Water exploding on rocks


Salt Point State Park

Chilling on the cliffs edge

Rough water on the rocks

Climbing the big mountain!

Road is on edge of mountain with no shoulders

The flat part in the distance is the road - no guard rails!!!

High road!

Crazy curves!

Road's edge and drop offs

Yeah, the white line is the edge of the road!

It's exciting!

Sonoma Coast State Park stretched 15 miles



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