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Tillamook to Lincoln City

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ROUTE: Tillamook to Lincoln City OR DISTANCE: 61 Miles if you only did the route WINDS: Variable at 10
WEATHER: Nice...65 TERRAIN: 3 good climbs and rolling in between TOTAL CLIMBING: 3778 Feet


We were forecast to have a pretty nice day, but when we walked outside to load, the sky was was raining buckets again just like yesterday.  The riders were looking to me because I said I was riding today and it wouldn't dare rain...well it buckets.  Luckily, the cloud seemed to be moving fast and it only lasted about 10 minutes and when it became load quit...see, I told them it wouldn't rain on my ride day.  We loaded at 7:30 and rode our bikes to breakfast about a mile and a half from the motel.  By the time we finished breakfast, even the temperature had mellowed and we were off on what pretty much became a perfect day. 

Our route took us along the Oregon Bicycle Route which bounced off 101 in a couple places and was a day of contrasts.  First we rode along tidal waters and farmland.  Then we climbed to pine and fir forests; popped out to spectacular coastal shore lines; rode through desert like sand dunes; marveled at the clear cut devastation of logging companies; and finally found ourselves in thick, old growth forest...just a good day on the bike. 

We started out on a flat stretch that allowed us to at least warm up a little before the climbing started.  Our first punch upward that got our blood flowing was at 8.2 on the Three Capes Scenic Route...that slope was between 10 and 13% in most places according to our GPS.  At the top of that climb we got to our first overlook at Cape Meares...this was the first year that it was clear for us to see it.  After Cape Meares, we had a great descent only to find we needed to climb back to the level we were before...I guess the people who built the roads out here didn't know about following a ridge line...or was there a ridge line.  Throughout most of the day, we found ourselves either riding along the coastline near a beach or up on the bluffs that overlooked the ocean...and what views we were rewarded with after the climbs (left).

I was riding today and enjoyed a brisk pace to the first climb to warm up.  I was also trying to get out ahead of folks to take some was a bit chilly but the effort did a nice job of warming me up and I was putting clothes in the van when I finished the climb.  About  half way to the second SAG, we came upon a nice town, Pacific City, where we stopped and had a wonderful bowl of clam chowder along with several other riders who had stopped to take in the sights and have a bit of lunch.

After the second SAG in the town of Neskowin, we left hwy 101 and made our way up Slab Creek Road.  This windy road took us through a few miles of old growth forest...tall moss laden fir trees that stood stoically along our path and provided beautiful scenery as we pushed our way to the summit.  Something else we saw that is common in this area was several areas of clear cut...areas where they have stripped the landscape of all standing trees for the paper mill.  Some of the clear cut was clearing downed trees from storm damage, but the resulting barren hillside was the same either way.  We would be riding in a beautiful tree lined area just to pop out into a large area that looked like a war zone...ground in turmoil with the only thing standing being stubby tree stumps that were once proud tall trees.  Luckily, this area on Slab road hasn't been subjected to such destruction.  It was quite a pleasing detour off 101.

At the top, we were greeted with a great descent all the way to a neat pie place on the corner of hwy 18 and Slab.  I had waited at the top of the Slab climb to get some photos when Larry, David, Greg, and Jim rode by.  I snapped their photo and jumped on my bike to catch them on the descent.  We all rode into the pie shop and took a much welcomed pie break...Marion Berry with ice cream...yum...made the whole day just a little brighter.

We saw some beautiful scenery and got to ride some super cycling roads today, but it just keeps getting better as we progress on this ride.  The riders don't believe me when I tell them that, but they'll see.  I've always said that I saved the best riding for last meaning Oregon was the last of the continental 48 states that I've ridden in...and the coast is the best yet.  Hopefully, we can have a clear day again tomorrow...I get to ride again tomorrow...oh, got to go charge my camera!  See you then.



"Mike said there was over 75,000 feet of descending on this ride."
"Yeah, ain't that sweet?"
"Wait a minute...Costa Mesa is about the same altitude as how are we going to get that much descending?"

"By now everyone should realize that these mountains keep the ocean out of Idaho."

"The hardest thing today was just trying not to run off the road while gawking at all the beautiful scenery."

"Did you notice that every time we turned left we had to climb."
"Yeah, but did you notice that if we'd turned right, we would have had to have a boat?"


The navigation is pretty easy on this ride with just a few exceptions...keep the ocean on your right and the mountains on your left will do you well on most occasions.  But sometimes we turn off the main road to get a little farther from the mountains and closer to the ocean.  Today I came upon Michel who was a bit perplexed about where to turn to the SAG...he thought he'd just missed the right turn.  As I rode by, I told him he hadn't gotten to the turn yet and to keep going..."Are you sure?"  He yelled.  "Yes!" I responded.  Ray was just behind me and as he passed Michel, he said, "Never doubt the ride leader!"  Sounded like sage advice if you ask me and Ray was hot on my tail to not miss any turns.  We continued down the road and, you guessed it, I blew right by the turn with Ray in close pursuit.  By the time I realized I'd missed the turn, we'd gone about a half mile.  Meanwhile, Michel had seen us go by the turn and was even more unsure now...should he follow what he thought was the route sheet or "never doubt the ride leader."  Michel decided to follow the route sheet while thinking to himself that the leader must know of another way.  When Ray and I got to the SAG, Michel asked us if we'd missed the turn or gone another way.  I told him that it was just a test to see if he'd follow the leader blindly or think for himself...and since he got to the SAG by way of the route, he'd passed.  Somehow, I don't think he bought it...especially after Ray admitted he'd now realized he's spoken too soon.

OK Julie, next time you don't sign in you'll have to do this for an hour!

What's the matter, you going to let a little rain stop you from riding...get out there and have fun!!!

Even the locals enjoy the views.

This was a pretty good size slug that dropped in on our SAG stop.  Jim commented that if we'd been in France, we'd have at least 8 different recipes to make him a meal and 3 of them would be raw.

Sampling berry pie at the Otis Cafe...I think these 3 are up to the task.

Team Ohio took time to evaluate the octopus tree at Cape Meares.  Greg commented he didn't think it looked like an octopus at all.  Bill set him straight when he pointed out that was the same thing octopus food thought just before it got eaten.

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