California Coast Adventure – Days 9 to 11

Continuation of Day 9 – June 28

First things first, I forgot to give an updated report on our road kill and flat tires at the end of our last post and I know some of you are waiting on pins and needles to read all about it.

Road kill count is up to 11 (some bird whose species was indistinguishable because of decomposition) and our flat tire count sits at 3.

We got in early enough that we were finally able to get down to the beach. There has been some begging going on for quite a few days about when we would be able to go down to the beach. For much of the trip the coastal access has been few and far between and heaven forbid we have a destination we have to try to get to before dark. Six year olds can be somewhat understanding but he recognized that this was his opportunity.

Our B&B was located just a hop, skip, and a jump across the creek from the beach.

001002005Our B&B also had a really cool swinging bridge that you had to cross to get to our room in the old barn house. It was a bit of a challenge for the bikes but not to worry, there was an old wagon bridge that was in disrepair that we could use for those instead of driving all the way around to the car road.

006We had an enjoyable time until Ron discovered a bunch of hair in our bed that wasn’t ours. Very, very, very gross. Nothing like changing the sheets at 9 o’clock at night when you just want to fall into bed asleep. The breakfast the next morning more than made up for that inconvenience though so it worked out.

Day 10 – June 29

Did anyone tell you that you shouldn’t ride on a coastal highway on a beautiful Saturday in late June? No. Plenty of people mentioned it to us but it wasn’t until today that we really felt it.

The book we are using described this part of the route as the most scenic but the most strenuous. You talk about glute and quad busting hills. I swear by the end of this ride my upper legs and glutes are going to be busting my pant seams like the Incredible Hulk. At least that’s what they feel like at the end of the day when I can feel every muscle sinew and tendon and ligament in them.

013016These pictures don’t even do justice to the fact that there was no shoulder and the cliffs just fell away to the ocean and you’d race down the descent and then come to almost a standstill while climbing up an ascent that was out of this world. I don’t even know the % grade because they warn semi trucks to not take highway 1 and those are really the only people who use the % grade signs, right?

I think during these hills there was definitely some “joking around” about just getting to San Fran and mailing our bikes home, renting a convertible and driving the rest of the way to San Diego. I put quotation marks around “joking around” because I’m not sure if we were really joking or if there was some seriousness to it. If you don’t see our bikes in any more pictures you can start to suspect we’ve chosen this route. (wink, wink)

Oh, the incredible views though!

012014

Finally, finally, finally! What we (well, really Kim) has been waiting for. A shop that specializes in ice cream. Ain’t no way we were passing that up, so we stopped in Fort Bragg and had some even before we ate our lunch/dinner. Definitely worth the calories!

017Day 11 – June 30

Whew! Today was a rough one. It was like a roller coaster – up, down, up, down through the green pasturelands that line the coast.

001002There was one really big up. So big that it is the steepest climb on the whole coast. It’s good to know that our steepest climb is over but boy was it difficult.

Just to get up it I had to count up 50 pedal strokes before I could take a break (and I had to do it many times), otherwise I would have probably stopped way sooner. It got to one point that I couldn’t even get restarted. The slope was too steep and the trailer was too heavy. I had to have both my brakes on so the trailer wouldn’t pull me back down the hill.

I felt a bit wimpy that I had to walk the bike (and technically have Ron push the trailer from behind just so we could get up the steepest stretch). I guess in reality it wasn’t that far of a stretch and it wasn’t realistic to think I could have made it up without help, but still a little defeating since every other hill after the first day I’ve managed to climb.

I’m working on an awesome tan! The morning sun has given me extra color on the left side of my left leg. Now only the left side mind you. If you look at the right side of my shin or my calf you’ll see the distinct absence of color. My feet have these awesome geometric tan marks from my Keen sandals, and my arms are brown from where my short sleeve ends to where my bike gloves start. These pics don’t even do them justice. I’m sure the people that see me in my swimsuit just shake their heads and are glad it isn’t them.

004005We’ve swung  into a KOA. Swimming pool, hot tub, and laundry are in order and an early bedtime so we can tackle one of our longest days of the trip. 41 ½ miles to go tomorrow.

003Road kill count still at 11 (a baby skunk yesterday, so sad) and flat tires still at 3.

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2 thoughts on “California Coast Adventure – Days 9 to 11

  1. When did you adopt a “ninja”? I swear in every set of pics, it looks like you picked one up. Absolutely gorgeous pictures! Glad I get the opportunity to see the beautiful scenery without all the stress on the body. :~)

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