Day 12: May 20; Rockaway Beach – Lincoln City OR; 60 miles

Today wasn’t our favorite. The first 17 miles were a bit of a blur because of our desperate search for coffee. McDonalds to the rescue again! After we got all caffeinated we were ready to tackle the day.

Now that we have an elevation map, we can see what’s in store for us with regards to hills. Most of them are pretty small with little elevation gain. Some of them however look absolutely daunting and we climbed 2 of them today. They were a lot steeper and longer than we anticipated and they took a lot out of us mentally. Just like the Appalachians, you think you’re at the top, but you turn the corner and there’s more! I’ve gotten good at using road signs to figure out what to expect. If there’s a “Passing lane 2 miles”, you know you’re in for one heck of a hill. And there is no sweeter sign than, “right lane ends” to know you finally reached the terminus and are about to reap the reward of a splendid downhill.

Going up the first hill we came across some hand glide and paragliding folks. Really neat to see them just launch themselves down from a cliff.

Also going up a hill, we noticed that to the left was a barren field, likely decimated by fire while the right side was lush and beautiful. Crazy to see the complete contrast.

And one last tidbit about this first hill (seriously so much happened on this hill… I mean it was 2 miles). As we were trudging along, a pickup truck pulled up right next to us driving slowly. In the passengers seat was a lady wagging her finger at us telling us, “you are crazy for riding on this road. You shouldn’t be on it” before driving off. Because she drove off before either of us could register the situation (and also because we were focused on not getting hit by the car her husband was driving entirely too close to us), we couldn’t react. I mean, the road we were on had a bike lane with frequent signs that bicycles were on the road… we’re not quite sure why she thought we shouldn’t be on it. But some people just want an excuse to wag that finger. Sheena was hoping she would be at the top of the hill so she could give her a taste of finger wagging medicine, but we must’ve been too slow because she was never seen of again.

Once again, rural Oregon reminds me more of Kentucky than Kentucky reminds me of Kentucky. Trucks with ATVs in the bed were heading out in droves to go mudding and we heard our first gunshots. We were looking at a map near someone’s driveway, and not two minutes later we heard a gunshot followed by a pump and a second gunshot. Taking it as a warning shot to get off their property, we high tailed it out of there immediately, not caring at all if we were going the wrong way.

We continued to follow 101 and today kept going from coast to further inland. We wish we would just stay by the coast! But it looks like our wish is coming true soon.

We’re staying at Devil’s Lake Recreation Park which has an awesome biker/hiker section. In fact, we met our first hiker using the site! Doug is hiking up the coast for a few days. He started Thursday and is ending tomorrow. He has been retired for 8 years and has been doing hiking trips ever since. He has already section hiked the PCT.

we talked to him for a while which is why this post is being written fairly quickly because I am ready for bed! We had 2 days logging truck free (they don’t operate on the weekends) but we get to contend with them again tomorrow. I am not thrilled with that, but we’ll get through it!

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