Sunday, September 12, 2004

Quintessential


Oregon Coast

One hundred miles by bicycle over the coastal range of Southern Oregon. You can hear only pounding surf and dripping water. It never actually rained but was soaking wet just the same. Like liquid air it collects on the leaves and falls only then in a formed droplet to the earth. Thick wet mist, fog curling up the side of the cliff face, seeping out of the trees, hanging suspended in the air.


Rogue River

The route first headed north and a little bit inland, over the Rogue River, past grazing deer, a furious rural lap dog on churning legs that made me laugh outloud till my bike wobbled, a couple wild turkeys and an obnoxiously pungent field of wild dill that about knocked me over...

...then back south past Gold Beach up, up, up, up and around every winding curve you find still more up to the top of Cape Sebastian. And 42 m.p.h. down the backside. But I sat there for too long and no body came along and finally I headed back up the prodigious hill till about a mile into the ascent a cyclist came flying past me yelling YOUR DAD HAS and the next one flew by A FLAT. HE'S AT THE and the last one TOP FIXING IT. So I waited there till he came along.

Right at the foot of Cape Sebastian the weather dried out, the sun even came out for a few minutes and it stayed temperate for the next 35+ mile stretch alongside the ocean, till about 70 miles when the route turned inland again for another super-colossal humongo behemoth ascent that made me question my priorities.

Here the thick mist rolled back in and though we were more inland we were really just on a higher road, one above the one above the cliffs that we were just on so the surf still pounded and the air got wetter then ever. It was like a joke about Oregon. But it was perfect and I wouldn't have changed one thing except maybe I would have worn those geeky little cyclist boots. Man, I woulda liked some 'a those.

Hot shower, spaghetti feed, sunset on the beach, a walk with my dog who has been living with my Dad and looks like a beaching whale in the surf and really she is just an old overweight dog fetching sticks. Man is she a blimp these days.

And through the redwoods back home.

So ends the summer season of cycling. Sigh.

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