We started the day with our third trip to the Gastropub next to our hotel.
After a fine feed we headed north on a bike path to Rickreall, which I have no idea how to pronounce.
We turned west on highway 22, the direct route to the beach from Salem and the middle of the Willamette Valley.
Even on a Sunday morning traffic was heavy. And loud. After spending so much time in the middle of nowhere the noise was its own kind of stress.
I was in the zone and managed to miss a turn. I heard my name and turned around. I had blown right past Corey and Mark. I would have been fine turning onto the now combined highways 22 and 18 but the proper route took us off the main drag onto a peaceful side road.
Alas the serenity ended after four miles when the road intersected with 18/22.
After another two miles 22 and 18 split, with 18 going due west and 22 going northwest. Corey’s GPS map has an updated version of the TransAmerica Bike Trail that, unlike by paper map, took us off the busy highway 18 and onto the windy, hilly backroad highway 22.
Up, down, and around through farms and past country houses. Highway 22 is a short cut to Pacific City on the coast. Impatient drivers, some pulling trailers passed us with little room to spare. Several times we were passed on curves with oncoming traffic. I guess we’re not in Wyoming anymore.
Toward the end of the road we passed a smashed up car in the ditch along the opposite side, no doubt the victim of a car passing on a blind curve.
We reached highway 101, the Pacific Coast Highway. Our unintentional short cut placed us several miles north of where my paper map would have led us. The shortcut turned a 60+ mile day into a 50+ mile day and put us within 100 miles of Astoria, the end of the TransAm.
We ran into a couple of bike tourists we’d been seeing the last couple of days and had lunch with them. They called ahead and booked a motel room. The less expensive motels in town were booked do we went to an RV place on nearby Cape Kiwanda and rented a campsite for $80. It’ll do.
We ended up doing 2,000 feet of climbing and a bit more descending. I barely noticed the uphill sections.
Tomorrow we ride 50 or so miles up the coast.
Miles today: 56.5. Tour miles: 3,223.5