A picture slideshow from our eight-day bicycle tour.
From August 28 to September 5, we bicycled the Oregon coast from just outside of Portland to the California border with two other couples from Denver. We cycled almost 450 miles over eight days, following the Oregon Coast Bike Route traveling southbound mostly on Highway 101. Occasionally we were on even more scenic routes.
Our group leader Juli Wiese planned our route and hired a tour company Lifecycle Adventures based in California and Oregon to move our bags from hotel to hotel. They also provide bikes and fit them perfectly for each of us. This isn’t one of their regular routes and our guide Sam (Samantha), went way beyond our expectations everyday. We’d pool a few dollars in morning for beverages and snacks so when we arrived at our hotels which were usually on or near a beach, we could discuss the days’ ride over happy hour. Sam would scope out the town and let us know where the best coffee shops and restaurants were. If we had any problems she was a phone call away and was happy to meet us and help with whatever we needed.
We began our ride about halfway between Portland and Astoria and finished our first day in Seaside after about 60 miles in the saddle. When you’ve planned and trained for a bike trip, it almost seems like a dream to actually be there. We didn’t waste any time tracking down local beers such as Dead Guy Ale, ordering clam chowder and trying to decide whether the soup at lunch was better than the one at dinner.
The next morning we rode about 10 miles to Cannon Beach for breakfast and a cool foggy walk on a world-class beach. Cannon Beach was a fun town where you could spend some serious time, even though we only had a few hours. The sun came out about noon and it was time for us to hit the road for another 50 miles to the tiny town of Oceanside, where we checked in to cute cabins with front porches looking out to the ocean for perhaps the best sunset of the entire trip!
The next few days became a bit of a blur getting to and staying in Depoe Bay, Florence and Coos Bay. The ride was beautiful, following the coastline in and out of forests, up and down hill after hill, through tunnels, past huge sand dunes with pine tree forests growing right out of the sand and over some pretty major bridges.
On day 6 we had a easy morning ride into the town of Bandon. We had almost 24 hours to shop, hike the beaches and eat dungeness crab!
Rested and ready, we hit the road early in a light fog that made one of my favorite riding pictures of the trip. We had a long ride that day and were rewarded with a picnic on the beach near our hotel in Gold Beach. Sam had us dialed in with some tasty food and beverages. Several of us ended up napping on the beach. When I woke up I saw a beautiful black cat hanging out in the tall grass on the sand dunes. The cat was friendly although she had very sharp claws and could use them faster than any cat I’ve ever played with! It was worth a little blood-letting for the iPhone pictures I captured.
The last ride of our trip was a chilly 30 miles in a damp fog to Brooking, then a few miles on down to the California state line. The highlight of the day was pedaling up a hill in the forest to see a “Happy Birthday” message written in chalk by Sam in the bike lane!
An hour or so later we pulled up in front of the ‘Welcome to California’ sign at the border. I was ready to keep on going down to San Francisco but we had a five-hour drive back to the town of Newport for the night, then a flight home from Portland the next day.
We celebrated my birthday drinking Dead Guy’s and eating crabs at Mo’s that night.
Cheers to fellow riders, friends and everyone who shares the road!