Pacific Coast Bike Trip: Day 5
We managed to get the camp packed up faster than usual this morning, but still had time for some Mountain House Blueberry Granola and bread with Nutella! With spirits high, we set out on what was supposed to be the shortest day of the trip…
Upon leaving the park, we headed south on the same road we had entered by, which as it turns out was a mistake. Despite pleadings from our Garmin GPS, we pushed on for about a mile and a half before decided to consult our Cycle Oregon map. About 20 minutes after we started the day, we arrived back at Sunset Bay and began again.
The route calls for backtracking into the little port town of Charleston, and then begins in earnest when one makes a turn onto a road aptly named “Seven Devils Road.” We hope to upload Garmin data soon and that will tell the tale, but there were several excruciatingly steep sections. Our quads screamed and our backs ached as we hooted and howled our way up the devils. Someone who was clearly not on a bike at the time of writing had spray-painted words of solace on the pavement as we came over some of the harder sections; they didn’t help much.
After summiting this series of climbs, we were supposed to have a few rollers, a gradual descent, and then flat roads into the finish, which sounded just about right. What we got instead was a series of rollers where our momentum was blunted by headwinds (yes, our tailwind luck ran out) and dodgy shifting from the front derailleur. As we reached the halfway point and our lunch stop we pulled into a local bike shop and spent some time recovering and tuning the bike.
The town of Bandon had a nice little downtown, worth exploring more than we did, but we scored BIG TIME when we chose High Brow Cat Bistro for lunch. Jo had the best gyro of her life (her hero for the day) and I had a delicious pepperoni pizza made on a pita-bread crust.
Back out on the road we continued to face a headwind that I will estimate at 10 mph. Not enough to break us, but enough to keep us out on the road much longer than we had intended. The countryside continues to be stunning every day though, and we were somewhat distracted by a series of U-pick blueberry farms and glass-blowing and wood-carving shops.
Before long, we came to a sign that lured us in…
The Langlois Market, only 14 miles from our hotel for the evening, was a welcome respite from the day’s peddling. They featured gigantic waffle cones of Umpqua-made ice cream (to die for and very inexpensive) and local jams. We stopped there with Brent, who we had been playing bike-tag with all day. We’ve seen him out on the road every day and our encounters with him will be missed when he finishes his journey in Brookings tomorrow.
After refueling, we made our final push and arrived at Port Orford and the Sea Crest Motel around 4:30 in the afternoon. We took some time to rest and sink-wash our clothes (hoping they’d dry by the morning!) and then rode our wonderfully light, unloaded tandem (which we’ve taken to calling The Thorpedo) into town for some dinner.
The Crazy Norwegian, made popular by Sunset Magazine, was a popular spot this night and we got in just in time. Jo had fried clam, french fries, and hot chocolate, while I opted for the grilled ham and cheese, fries, and a couple of Red Hook IPA’s. It took a while to get served, and I’m not sure all the fried food was the best idea, but we left satisfied.
Garmin 500 Data:
Distance: 56.38 miles
Elevation Gain: 2,592 feet
Max Speed: 31.3 mph
Min Temperature: 55.4F
Max Temperature: 77F