Oregon and Washington;
The final two of the
Contiguous United States.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Today 25 miles, Total 4,876
Wild Rivers Motorlodge, Brookings, Oregon
Weather: It could be summer.
Flat tires: 0, Total 20
Falls with bicycle: 0, Total 7

Today is the day! After three marvelous months in California, we're going to ride into our 14th state: Oregon! The sun wakes us up, what a day it's going to be.

The camp ground is a little out of the center of town, just to far to walk and get some breakfast. But we have a solution: Nancy, who arranged the campground for us, is coming to pick Amarins up. Together they head into town. First stop Burger King, next stop Starbucks, where the iftcard can finally be put to use.

Breakfast with ciniminis, french toast and milk from Burger King, and coffee and oatmeal from Starbucks; thanks to Nancy and a gift card.

Filled with breakfast, we finish packing up. In the mean time, Nancy plays bouncy ball with the girls. Lots of laughter.

The girls and Nancy are running after the bouncy balls.

At 9.30 we're on the 101 once more. The sun is warming our backs. With its gentle slopes, we consider the road flat. Not a cloud in the sky, so pretty and blue.

We're heading for the Oregon coast.

It's exciting to see signs pointing to the Oregon Coast and Oregon cities. We feel the pull, as if it's pulling us in. Riding the bicycle across the continent is much more a mental game then it is a physical sport. Our bodies will do what we tell them to do. Our brains are in charge. If we think the hill is steep, if feels that more steeper. If we catch a sneeze of wind in our faces, it's as if we're having a headwind. It works the other way around as well. Each and every day we try to look at the positive. A steep hill, yes, but a beautiful down hill ride afterward. We look for the sun in the sky, not the rain in the clouds. It's important to let positive thoughts win over negative ones. A rainy day? Good, we'll use it to rest. A sunny day? Good, we'll ride while basking in the sun. A bit windy? Catch the breezes in the back, feel refreshed with the ones in our faces. Life is good, no matter how it sometimes feels. Keep looking for the positive and you'll find it.

Running between the farm fields.

Oregon is another six miles to the north. We can see a hill, can that be Oregon? Or is that the last hill in California? We're having a good break between the pastures. The kids run as far as they can. They burst with energy like usual. The claves are curious and walk up to the fence. A couple of them take some of the grass the girls feed them.

A final picture of our quint bicycle in California.

The final stretch to Oregon! Back on the main road, around the hill we go. It is a California hill after all. Now we can see the town of Brookings way off in the distance. That's Oregon for sure. Here we come!

We're in Oregon!

At the border we meet Larry the officer with his family. He found some stickers for the girls to put on the bicycle! Thanks officer! Enjoy the day!

The girls have been counting cars with Oregon tags from Crescent City to the border. They counted a total of 168.

Let's see what Oregon has in store for us. A couple of rollers to start with. Honks and waves and friendliness abound. An invitation for pizza at the Wild River Pizza Company to tip it off.

Robin enjoys riding the tractor at the Wild Rivers Pizzaria in Harbor-Brookings, OR.

After this beautiful day it's hard to believe rain is blowing in for the next two days. We're not taking a chance. We rode hard and look forward to taking these days to rest. On our way into Brookings we stop at the Wild Rivers Motorlodge. It looks like a good place to spend the rainy days.

The room is very spacious, we easily ride our trailer in. Next to the bathroom we even have a refridgerator and a microwave. These will come in handy during our stay.

Bill heads into town to do some grocery shopping, as we settle in for our stay. Robin has found a new friend to play with.

Cat talk.

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Monday, April 19, 2010

Today 0 miles, Total 4,876
Wild Rivers Motorlodge, Brookings, Oregon
Weather: Chance of rain with sparkles.
Flat tires: 0, Total 20
Falls with bicycle: 0, Total 7

Yes it's raining. Off and on. And off and on. Amarins and Cheyenne head into town. Cheyenne's pants are ripped, her shoelace broken. Time for some replacements.

We're keeping dry between sprinkles. Goofing off, having fun, being silly. We arrive at a shopping center and find half of what we're looking for; shoelaces. At the little cafe we sit down to lace the new shoelaces.

As we're taking our time Amarins starts to wonder what the capital of Oregon is. Cheyenne goes on a quest to find out. An older gentlemen is the target. The first thing she learns is we're not in OregOn, we're in OregUn (and you can somewhat swallow the 'e' in that too). The capitol is Salem.

On our way inland we'll be traveling from Eugene to Portland and will ride through Salem. That'll tie it together.

Cheyenne and Jasmine with their 'new' tattoos.

We have a nice place to hang out in the motel. It is nice to have the refrigerator and microwave available. The afternoon we spend inside.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Today 0 miles, Total 4,876
Wild Rivers Motorlodge, Brookings, Oregon
Weather: The rain is here.
Flat tires: 0, Total 20
Falls with bicycle: 0, Total 7

The rain is here to stay today. To wet to go out for a walk. With the card games, internet and tv we enjoy the day inside.

All braided and ready to go once more. Total braid count would have been interesting during the trip. We're easily up to several hundreds.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Today 28 miles, Total 4,904
Campsite: With Karen and Scott of the
Indian Creek Resort, Gold Beach, Oregon
Weather: Icy cold. Where is spring?
Flat tires: 0, Total 20
Falls with bicycle: 0, Total 7

Though cloudy, we're taking on the day. We'll make it safe and sound to Gold Beach. Every day is a new challenge, today the challenge is to stay dry.

Thanks for having us Wild Rivers Motorlodge! We've enjoyed our stay and the service.

The road takes us closer to the coast. We're excited to be in a new state, with new scenery. Although California was far from boring, new scenery every 100 miles as it seemed. Oregon has the name to have a beautiful coastline. We're about to find out.

The Oregon coast is beautiful. The sun is trying to make its way through the clouds.

It is a very cold day. We're warm from riding, but as soon as we stop, or ride down the hill, we're chilled. Once again the girls are wrapped up. Will it ever warm up enough for us to enjoy the scenery without all the wrapping?

We cross the Thomas Creek Bridge. With its height of 345 feet, the highest bridge in Oregon. We look down upon the tall coniferous trees and the creek below it.

A pretty ride up the 101.

The clouds are too thick. The sun isn't coming through. The girls keep bundled up as we're taking a break admiring the rocks on the beach.

Trooper games.

We keep our breaks short. We're ready to arrive in town. There we'll sit inside and warm up a while. The Indian Creek Resort in Gold Beach is letting us pitch our tent. With it being so cold, we're thinking we'll need a warmer place to stay then our tent.


A warm Jasmine smile.

The tallest hill is still ahead of us. It'll give us plenty of time to think about what to do. Perhaps it's more a mountain then a hill. Where is the distinctive line? Ffor us it's the lenght of the climb and the grade. We start out calling it a hill. When the climb takes to long, or the grade gets so steep we need to stop very often, then it becomes a mountain.

The big climb before Gold Beach.

Alright, it's a mountain per our definition after all. The road veers off into the woods, leaving the ocean behind us. Curve after curve we climb higher. We're not yet at the top when it starts raining. A drizzle, but rain none the less.

We stop to add raincoats. Under an overhanging branch we find additional shelter. It's not raining fast enough for us to pull out the tarp (yet), but Amarins is getting it ready anyway.

Arrival in Gold Beach. Cold and wet.

Without much more rain we arrive in Gold Beach. We find a place for the bicycle under an awning at the hairdresser. Then we head for the comfort of the Double D's Cafe. Here we meet Karen of the Indian Creek Resort. Without hesitation she offers us their home to stay in. That's a relief.

Warm and refreshed at the Double D's Cafe, we climb on for the final yards to the high school where we'll park our bicycle.

After parking the bicycle we head for the house. It's located on top of a hill, with a beautiful view of the Rogue river and the ocean in the distance. What a day.

The evening we spend with Scott and Karen. The girls enjoy the space. Building tents with blankets, rolling around with two humonguous stuffed dogs, dropping ping pong balls from the balcony to see them bounce. Cheyenne enjoys the privacy of 'her' own room with some tv shows to watch. Even Jasmine has a room to herself, with a very fluffy bed...

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Thursday, April 22, 2010

Today 29 miles, Total 4,933
Campsite: At Ernie and Holly, Port Orford, Oregon
Weather: Wiiiindy.
Flat tires: 0, Total 20
Falls with bicycle: 0, Total 7

One after the other the girls come out of their rooms. Robin is the last one to wake up. She's all wrapped up in the legs of one of the dogs. Breakfast is waiting; cereal, boiled eggs, milk, chocolate milk or orange juice. Plenty to choose from.

The girls with Scott and Karen of the
Indian Creek Resort in Gold Beach. Thanks for the hospitality!

A little after 9 we're back at the high school. Loading up, and dressing up. The sun is shining. So marvelous to feel the sun again. The wind is blowing. It's coming straight from the north, our direction.

The towns on the Oregon coast are aproximately 30 miles apart. This has been developed in the stage coach days, when they could travel about that distance per day. For us on our bicycle it is perfect. The next town up is Port Orford. That's our destination for tonight.

The sun is shining, but the wind keeps it cold. The waves are kicked up on the ocean.

The scenery is as breathtaking as it was yesterday. You wonder where the huge rocks come from that are now surrounded by the ocean. What a power and force it must have been. There are no tall mountains around from where they came tumbling down. They're way to big for it anyway. It looks like they've been pushed up from below. It sure has created a beautiful scenery.

We climb a gentle rolling coastline. After the first 10 miles we find a pullout for a little break. It's out of the wind. A very welcoming benefit.

Jasmine and Robin are playing together more and more often.

An added tension is keeping our minds occupied lately. The bicycle is in dire need of updates again. In Garberville, California, we noticed both rims are cracked once more. We're milking them and hope they'll make it to Eugene. In the mean time Lyle from Spinlite Cycling in Hiawassee, Georgia, is building us a new set; rims 8 and 9 on the journey. The chains are over stretched. They slip more and more and fall of on a regular basis. Since it has happened so often, we've developed a simple routine. We pull over, Amarins puts the chain(s) back on, and off we are again. With fighting the wind and the pressure of rain around the corner, it's a constant mental battle to keep going.

We keep on going and hope for the best. We pull energy from the sights. The girls and their creativity keep us laughing. One of the rocks we come by is a bullfrog. They all agree on it.

Bullfrog rock. As named by us. On the other side of the road are puddles with tadpoles in them. How appropriate.

Going inland around Humbug mountain provides some shelter from the wind. A picnic area looks inviting. Picnic tables, a grassy spot to play on and trees to climb in. We pull the snacks out of the panniers and enjoy the selection of bread, fruit and granola bars. The girls eat on the run. There are to many things to do and explore.

If there is a tree to climb, the girls are in it. Cheyenne teaches Jasmine and Robin.

With the rest and new energy we're ready to tackle the final miles. We say goodbye to the lady in the parking lot and under her horn honking are back on the road. The road winds its way around the mountain, following a creek. The lady passes us, then returns. She's decided to be our guardian angel through the tight curves. At a roadwork area we finally introduce ourselves. When Ellen finds out where we're heading, she offers us a place to stay in the yard of her friends. She's visiting in Port Orford tonight, and knows her friends well. We quickly exchange phone numbers and will call when we get to town.

Once again we don't have to worry about finding a place to stay. Actually, we rarely worry about it at all. We've made it this far, we know that things will fall in place. There is always a way, even if we don't know how yet.

To Jackson street and beyond...

In Port Orford we stop at a Norwegian eatery. Our warm meal for the day is here. It's one of the things we are pretty set on; a hot meal a day. As we sit there and eat, Ellen arrives with her friends Holly and Ernie. How did they find us? Oh yeah, the bike...We back up a mile to our camping spot. Bill and Ernie set up the tent. All the girls take dog Tilly out for a walk near the cemetery. Once we're out of the wind, it feels quite warm, well, not so cold anymore is probably a better description.

Playing ball with Tilly, Holly and Ellen.

When we come back from the walk, the tent is ready to be occupied. Amarins finishes making the beds. Then we're ready to play some card games and last but not least, the first chapter of our new book 'Inkheart'. This one should last us till Alaska.

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Friday, April 23, 2010

Today 51 miles, Total 4,984
Campsite: At Oceanside RV Park, Charleston, Oregon
Weather: Windy around the corners.
Flat tires: 0, Total 20
Falls with bicycle: 0, Total 7

It is a day full of surprises. Bill has been on the phone with another Bill and they've been up to something! We're going to have a special place to stay tonight... with a fireplace.

The other Bill happens to be in Port Orford and will take our trailer and gear to our next destination, north of Bandon. Without the trailer we should be able to make some good time. In theory that is. The wind is trying to blow us back to California. it's hard work for every mile we ride.

We take a long rest break in Langlois, then another break at the West Coast Game Park, between Langlois and Bandon. This is surprise number two. Tickets are waiting for us at the park. The park is set up as a petting zoo, where you can pet goats, lama's and different kinds of deer. There are wild animals too; leopards, tigers, lions, bear, camels, bearcats and several different monkeys. These don't roam freely (thank goodness).

As we're in the park, we get the chance to pet a baby leopard, two ferrets and a skunk. What an experience!

At the Safari park we get the chance to pet a three month old leopard cub. Another unique experience.

Cheyenne helps Robin up, so she can pet the cub too. The cub licks its chops... cleaning up the milk she just drank.

Petting Flippers the ferret.

On our way further north we stop to do the interview with KCBY from Coos Bay/North Bend. As we pull up to do the interview we cross a weigh scale. It shows our weight. That deserves a picture!

On the scale at a weight center. We're 650 pounds. And this is without our trailer and most of our gear! We're much heavier then we thought. The trailer and gear is easily another 150 pounds. Thus we're pulling over 800 pounds up and down the mountains. No wonder we're chugging!

We pass Bandon. We're not quite sure where our destination for today is. It's somewhere on the coast, but it isn't on our map. We ride some more miles and more hills, although one of them can be called a mountain.

It's been a strenuous day with weather and breakdowns. The wind is right in our face all the time. The chain keeps falling off. Once we have to stop because of Amarins' shoe lace being tied around the pedal. Once to pick up Cheyenne's gloves that fell. Once because Jasmine's mirror dropped. We never really get into a pattern of riding. After 30 miles we start to feel it.

We keep the 101 past the Seven Devils turn-off. The next one is the one we'll take to the ocean. Then we see the sign. Another 14 miles to go. It's just to much. We bit off more then we can handle. But a solution is nearby. Bill is here in his truck. He's been with us off and on during the day. We decide that Amarins and the girls drive with him to our camp. Our Bill will have to finish by himself today.

Our camp is a huge fifth wheel. It has a fake fire place in it which creates a great athmosphere. We take a moment to settle down and relax before getting ready for supper.

The girls play pattern games with Heather and Grace. Annie is checking it all out first.

Bill and the bike arrive just as we get ready to go out to eat. Perfect. He deserves to have a good supper too. In the final miles to our camp the chain to Jasmine's stoker kit 'exploded'. It totally disintegrated. One piece actually hitting Bill's back.

The girls are having a blast together in the restaurant.

What a day full of surprises.

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Saturday, April 24, 2010

Today 12 miles, Total 4,996
Campsite: At
Gib's RV Superstore, Coos Bay, Oregon
Weather: Gorgeous, warm and no wind.
Flat tires: 0, Total 20
Falls with bicycle: 0, Total 7

The day to fix the bicycle is here! We load up the little things we need during the day. The rest can stay in the camper. Barb is going to bring it to Gib's RV Superstore later today. Our comfortable home for the weekend.

There is no wind. It's wonderful. After the first hill we arrive in Charleston. Now we've traveled from Charleston on the Atlantic Ocean to Charleston on the Pacific Ocean. This Charleston is a little fisherman's town on an estuary.

We can feel the miles from yesterday. What a hump that was. We're slowly work our way to Coos Bay. We take a little detour via Bill's business.

On our way to the bicycle store we stop in coos Bay at the RV Superstore.

From here the route takes us through town, to North Bend. The bicycle store is located near the Coos Bay bridge. Amarins is going to take the girls to the playground while Bill works on the bicycle. RV Bill has been able to arrange a new front rim for us. It's waiting for us at Moe's bicycle store in North Bend.

Before going to the playground the girls and Amarins walk to a little restaurant for breakfast. This should give the sun a chance to dry the rain off the play ground equipment. We find a nice place to sit at the bar. The girls get situated with coloring books and pencils. They already know what they want to drink.

Hot chocolate with whipped cream with sprinkles at Mom's Kitchen in North Bend.

Now we can tackle the play ground. Crossing the road is quite tricky, but we make it safely. Then we're home free. Play girls play!

Faster and faster goes the merry-go-round.

Enjoying the swing in unison.

It is after noon when Bill is still working on the bicycle. It always takes a lot of time to check everything and make sure that it all works the way it's supposed to. Too long for the girls to hang around. We head for the camper with 'RV Bill'. It's already set up in the lot.

At our arrival in 'our' camper the girls find a surprise: sweat shirts for us all! The Gib's logo with Oregon map on the front, our Pedouin logo on the back! Thanks RV Bill! (H+M: Jim sjoche wol dat Robin oan neie maillots ta is. Miskien kinne jimme wol in pear mei nimme? In maatsje greater dan 110/116 dyt se no hat.)

The girls have a playdate with Grace and Annie later this afternoon. They're going to the 'outdoor indoor' playground. That's going to be a lot of fun. Bill arrives with the bicycle on a trailer, just before the girls go to play. Perfect timing, now mom and dad can have a date together!

Playing ring-around-the-rosie with Grace. Robin is checking out the updates on the bicycle.

The evening is not over yet after the date and playdate. We're going out for supper to a German-Dutch restaurant with Allen and Heather.

Supper with Allen and Heather at a German-Dutch restaurant in Coos Bay.

As the grown-ups focus on the food, the girls are busy with coloring and with stickers...

Cheyenne and Grace have found a match in eachother.

Guess who?

Of course Robin and Annie join in the sticker fun too.

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Sunday, April 25, 2010

Today 22 miles, Total 5,018
Campsite: Coho RV park, Reedsport, Oregon
Weather: A cool morning with a lower 60s afternoon.
Flat tires: 0, Total 20
Falls with bicycle: 0, Total 7

We left the bicycle on the trailer. We already biked to North Bend yesterday. Now we're going to ride back there and cross the bridge by car as well. This way we avoid the narrow bridge all together. Just right.

Dave helps Bill unload the bicycle. We transported across the bridge for safety. Challenge solved.

We're riding on the shoulder. Eyes on the mile markers. 233, 232, 231, 230, 5000...

Our 5000th mile! That is FIVE THOUSAND!

What a milestone! We can barely believe it. We've come so far! We remember counting by 100s and 500s, now we're counting by the thousands.

The length of the equator is 25,000 miles. We've come a fifth of the way. We've come from New York, NY to San Diego, CA and back. We've come from the North Pole to Key West, Florida. We've come from Leeuwarden, The Netherlands to Cheyenne, Wyoming. We've come from Johannesburg, South Africa to Paris, France. We've come across the Great Wall of China and then some. What a journey.

The quint bicycle rides so smooth. No more sloppy chains, no more broken front rim. We're simply sailing across the road. Thanks RV Bill for all your help and support! Thanks for letting us stay in the comfortable camper again tonight! And thank you Barb for carting it around for us!

We hold a snack break at a filling station in Lakeside. Hot chocolate for the girls and whatever else they can lay their hands on. Cheyenne chooses bubble gum, Robin goes for lifesavers and donuts, Jasmine takes the tictacs. Choices we usually would not agree with, but today we have something to celebrate! Knock yourselves out girls! As we sit there Barb rides by with 'our home'.

We're at Winchester Bay view point.

Barb is on her way back south as we're at the view point. She's already been to Reedsport and has set up the camper. Cheyenne and Jasmine have fun playing with them.

They're playing cow herding. Barb is the horse, Jasmine the cowboy. They are herding Cheyenne, the cow...

Robin continues her nap. Barb plays with Cheyenne and Jasmine.

We're finishing our ride with a little climb into Reedsport. Then it's downhill to the campground. It's only 1pm when we arrive. Amazing.

An afternoon to enjoy in the camper. The girls are busy playing with the barbies, the computergame and the coloring supplies. We even get to sneak in a nap.

And the day isn't over yet. The girls are having a sleep over with Grace and Annie. What an adventures.

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Monday, April 26, 2010

Today 36 miles, Total 5,054
Elkton RV park, Elkton, Oregon
Weather: No wind, no rain, no sun.
Flat tires: 0, Total 20
Falls with bicycle: 0, Total 7

Say goodbye to luxurious camp Pedouin. We're loading everything up again. It's time to go inland. Instead of going up to Florence and then over to Eugene, we're going inland here at Reedsport on the 38, before heading up to Eugene.

A very comfortable camp Pedouin.

We're expecting rain this afternoon. Hopefully later then sooner. Highway 38 follows along the Umpqua river. A very slightly climbing road. We're riding like the wind. The scenery is spectacular. The road is smooth. We're flying.

Riding through the valley along the Umpqua river.

Within two hours we are in Scottsburg. A restaurant provides a good spot to rest and to consider what to do next. If the rain stays for a couple of days, Scottsburg is not really the place to hang out.

Elkton is the next town up. With some more ammenities. It looks like the rain is still holding off. We're going to go for it. The rest has done us well. The road stays relatively flat.

We're still a couple of miles shy from Elkton when we feel the first sprinkles. We give it our all and arrive in Elkton. We've decided to take a motel for the rainy days. But there are none in Elkton. When we arrive at the RV park to pitch our tent, we hear about another option. There is a camper for rent. We check it out and agree this is what we need.

A double bed, a bunk bed, a kitchenette, a couch and a table to play on. Just right.

We have barely moved in or the storm arrives. Fierce wind bursts and rain have arrived. How fortunate we are to have found this place to find shelter. Thanks Elkton RV Park!

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Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Today 0 miles, Total 5,054
Elkton RV park, Elkton, Oregon
Weather: A rainy rest day. It comes and goes in sheets.
Flat tires: 0, Total 20
Falls with bicycle: 0, Total 7

Full blast rain all night. We're so thankful we have this camper to stay in. Our tent keeps us dry, but to occupy it for a couple of days in the rain still makes quite a muddy mess.

The morning comes with a dry spell and even some blue sky. But we're going to stay put today. We realized we had six riding days in a row. We've been very fortunate with the weather. We can use the rest.

A good choice. The rain comes and goes in spells throughout the day. Bill plays games with the girls. Even Robin can play Candyland. Amarins heads for the cafe, so she can work on the website. We always make good use of these rainy rest days.

During the middle of the day we have visitors. Mike and Kathy from Cambria are 'in the area'; after driving here from Bend they are. Thanks for coming to see us!

Our friends Mike and Kathy from Cambria get a warm welcome from the girls.

Playing boardgames with Kathy.

We love you guys!

Robin in her favorite duck towel.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Today 0 miles, Total 5,054
Elkton RV park, Elkton, Oregon
Weather: On off on off.
Flat tires: 0, Total 20
Falls with bicycle: 0, Total 7

A night of rain, a morning of rain. Sun peeks through, what should we do. Perhaps we should go, not stay. Rain rolls in once more. Perhaps we should stay, not go. Around noon we finally settle down for the stay mode. Thus we spend another day in Elkton.

Running up the hill between rainstorms. On our way to Tomasilo's for a late breakfast.

Home at the Umpqua river in Elkton, Oregon.

Naptime for Robin on the top bunk in the camper.

Cheyenne and Bill are working on replying th e-mail.

Jasmine is playing a game of Candyland.

For supper we go over to Joan and Jeff's. They've invited us when we came back from breakfast. The girls enjoy the toys, the movie and a new playmate. The food is delicious. Thanks for the invitation!

Jasmine spotted a rainbow.

Lots of fun to splash in the puddles.

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Thursday, April 29, 2010

Today 30 miles, Total 5,084
Campsite: Behind Lorena's Cafe, Lorane, Oregon
Weather: Rain sun rain sun etc.
Flat tires: 0, Total 20
Falls with bicycle: 0, Total 7

Once again the night is filled with rain. Seven o'clock rolls around and it's still raining. We planned to leave today, but are having second thoughts now. A look out the window shows there is blue sky on the horizon. A decision is made. We're going. Let's start packing.

While we're loading the bicycle we have to sit out another rain. It's hard to tell whether we're making the right choice. Tonight will tell. When the rain has stopped, the bicycle is loaded, we head up the street to Arlene's Cafe for breakfast.

Breakfast at Arlene's Cafe, before we head for the road.

It's still dry when we're ready to roll. Eventhough we started packing late, we're on the road by 9.30. As soon as we're out of town we hit our first hill. It's a bit tough with a heavy breakfast in our bellies. With several stops and goes we make it to the top still sooner then expected.

One hill down! One more big one to go.

Some sprinkles keep us company down the hill. The road is soaked. We're taking it easy. A couple of miles further we arrive at the tunnel. Jeff is going to help us through by being our sag wagon, but he's not here yet. We're superfast downhill compared to up hill. We flag down a car with two ladies. They don't hesitate and follow us through the tunnel. The tunnel is not to long, but without a shoulder and in our snail pace, this is the safer way to go.

We're checking out the high water of the Elk Creek, before entering the tunnel.

We safely make it through the tunnel, wave the ladies goodbye and are on our own again. The shoulder is very wide. It makes for wonderful riding. A little further we meet Jeff and his mom. Thanks for being there for us!

Honey in the making.

The road is relatively flat. We roll along nicely. The rain is on our tail, but not on us. We make good progress and arrive in Drain a little after 11am. We plan to take a short break, but the rain decides differently.

Rain in Drain

The Shell station provides a good place for a break with hot chocolate and buggles.

It's an hour before we're setting of again. With the sun on our back this time. The storm sure came over quickly.

As the clouds disappear over the horizon the sun comes out again. Time for us to pick up the road.

Instead of going all the way to the interstate in Curtis, we take a turn toward Lorane. This will keep us off tie interstate, although it adds a hill. Still, we prefer this over the rough and noise of the interstate.

Another round of dark clouds awaits us.

We keep on riding up the hill until we're at the edge of the clouds. We can almost see the rain coming. A wide spot on the shoulder is our aim. We quickly pull off. Bill steadies the bicycle, covering himself with garbage bags. Amarins pulls out the tarp and covers the bicycle from Robin to the tail of the trailer.

Cheyenne and Jasmine are having fun playing games while we're keeping dry under the tarp.

Robin is checking it all out.

A half hour later we peel off the tarp, put everything back up and continue up the hill. It's not meant to last. Within the next couple of miles we pull over twice more to cover with the tarp. We're becoming experts at it while we're at it.

What a dad! He's holding up the bike, while everybody else stays nice and dry!

Robin has a peek hole so she can keep an eye on daddy.

Another half a mile and we're to the top. It's sprinkling, but we keep on going until we're back in the sun. Another four miles takes us into Lorane where we pile into Lorane's Cafe to warm up and for a warm meal. Soup, grilled cheese sandwiches, a hamburger and some mozarella sticks do the trick. We're to where we wanted to go today.

We get to set up camp behind Lorane's Cafe in Lorane. We quickly set it up before the next rain storm comes.

To be ahead of the next rain, we quickly pile in. The girls are armed with coloring books. This entertains for over an hour. Then all peace and quiet are over and it's time to wrestle!

The girls enjoy the coloring books from the cafe.

Robin is figuring out which drawing to pick.

Worn out from wrestling we finish the day with a treat from Tomasilo's, a chapter from the book and good night songs from dad.

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Friday, April 30, 2010

Today 31 miles, Total 5,115
Campsite: With Elaine and Tom, Junction City, Oregon
Weather: Good to go and keep going.
Flat tires: 0, Total 20
Falls with bicycle: 0, Total 7

We wake up at the crack of dawn. The birds are already awake. They're chirping their morning songs. Bill and Amarins walk over to the cafe to pull the bicycle out. It's been nice and dry inside for the night.

Ms Lorena's morning customers: her family.

The girls wake up one after the other. It's a cool morning. They quickly get dressed. In the cafe it's nice and warm. They start the morning with coloring. Next come mickey mouse pancakes. Yummy!

Thanks for breakfast Ms Lorena!

By 8.30 we're riding. On our way to Eugene we are. By leaving early we hope to be in town by noon. Our ninth rim is waiting for us at the Burley office. Then we should be good to go again till Vancouver Island.

The clouds lay low on the horizon. We stay dry but for some sprinkles. Not enough to stop and cover with the tarp.

The road curves through Lorane valley. A pretty ride where good and bad pavement alternate. The little traffic works on our side. We can tell the Oregon folks are well used to bikers on the road. Even when we do have a wide shoulder, we still get extra space to ride on.

Invasion of the clouds.

We have a couple of hills which we take slowly as is our custom. Up one hill Robin asks for a potty break. Bill sees a school up ahead. We decide to stop there. As soon as we arrive, the principal comes out and greets us warmly. Of course we can come in and use the restrooms. We also get a tour of the school. Cheyenne shares our route with a first grade class. But that's not all.

Ready to ride through Twin Oaks Elementary school.

With the cheers of the students of Twin Oaks Elementary, we make it through the hall way of the school. This was great! Thanks principal Soberman!

The joy stays with us as we climb Bailey Hill. It's the final hill before we arrive in the Willamette Valley. The Willamette Valley stretches from Eugene all the way up to Portland. We're going to take advantage of some flat riding in the next week or two.

Valley ahead!

We find our way to the west side of Eugene. It's still before noon when we arrive at the Burley office. Our rim has arrived, so have some other packages. We feel very welcome. They seem to find a lot of joy in our journey and to see how well the Nomad trailer we're pulling is holding up.

The girls are rolled around in a new Burley trailer.

The girls are being pulled around in the several trailers that are in the office. Either by the staff or by themselves. Lots of joy there. Next they drum up some coloring equipment before moving on to play some games on a computer. Between all the playing we find some time to eat some lunch and to do an interview with Randi of the Register Guard.

At the new Bruley facility on Cludburst in Eugene.

It's been a good break. We load the bicycle with the packages and the new rim. Tonight Bill will put it on. With directions from Randi for a place to stay near Junction City, we head out of town. We take advantage of the available bike path, ride just shortly on the 99 after which we disappear between the fields on Prairie road.

Between the fields in the valley.

With a couple of kinks the route is easy to follow. On our way we see a lumber yard in process. Logs are awaiting processing. A truck is being loaded with wood chips. Stacks of processed wood are in line for the kiln. Train carts are being loaded with processed lumber. And we just see a small part of the operation.

We're welcome to pitch our tent anywhere we want. A nice place in the back yard will be the spot. The sun is out, it feels so nice. We lay out our gear to air it out.

Cheyenne is climbing the tree. If only she could take off her shoes...

When the young ladies of the house arrive, they're swarmed with three little ladies. Playmates!

Greta and Robin are playing with water.

Sofie reads a story to Robin.

Greta helps Cheyenne and Jasmine play battleship.

We have the hardest time pulling away from the family to bring the girls to bed. Especially when we're being treated on a musical performance by Greta. Thanks ladies!

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Saturday, May 1, 2010

Today 37 miles, Total 5,152
Campsite: Motel 6, Albany, Oregon
Weather: Tailwind morning, sidewind afternoon, cloud theater as decor.
Flat tires: 0, Total 20
Falls with bicycle: 0, Total 7

The morning comes with the crows of the rooster. Eventhough early, it's a lovely sound. It gives us the chance to wake up slowly. Cheyenne is usually the one to turn over one more time. Not this time. 'Are the girls awake yet?' is the first thing she asks.

Bill takes the girls inside, when we're sure the house is alive. Amarins once more cleans out the inside of the tent. When she comes inside, the girls have already finished breakfast and are busy playing.

Ms Elaine writes down My Old Kentucky Home, as Jasmine tells her.

It's close to nine when we're loaded and ready to go. Somewhere further north is the plan. We say goodbye to Tom and his lovely ladies and head over to River road. This will lead us into Junction City. As we're riding on the road we notice a car with its blinkers on behind us. It's Meggie with her sisters! How funny. We say goodbye once more. Goodluck on your journey through life!

Train crossing! The last time we stopped for a train was in Georgia!

With a tailwind it's sweet cruising. Miles disappear behind us. The sky keeps changing. We can see it rain in the distance. There is still snow on the mountains in the east. So far we're dry and are enjoying the performance by the clouds.

Robin and Jasmine on the road.

Junction City, Harrisburg, Halsey. Time for a long break. We ride to the playground at the Elementary School. There is a lot going on at the school. They're having a fund raiser. Lots of playmates.

Lunch with Julie, Delaney and Jaden. Thanks Julie!

We didn't have to worry about lunch today. Julie is driving up from Eugene with a basket full of fruit, bagels, cream cheese, salami, juice and chocolate treat for dessert. The girls enjoy the company of Delaney and Jaden. We are having a good time with Julie. Thanks for sharing your plans and dreams for the future!

Fun on the slide with Jaden and Delaney.

A superlong and very enjoyable lunch break is a good way to start the afternoon ride. The wind doesn't think so. It's now coming from the side. Gone is the easy riding. We're riding five miles before taking a break in Shedd. From there it's only 12 more miles to Albany. The wind is making it a bit hard for us, but mile after mile we're getting closer. And there is still plenty to see and enjoy.

A field of sheep, with snow topped mountains in the distance.

We ride and ride and reach the outskirts of Albany. A sign says it is 74 more miles to Portland. We're getting so close to yet another big town on our list. It will be the last big town before we arrive on the mainland in Alaska and ride through Anchorage.

In Albany we miss the turn to the northern end of town and arrive in the nort east part. It's gotten late in the afternoon and we're ready to call it a day. We're to tired to figure out the way to North Albany and settle for a motel near the interstate. It's been a good riding day.

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Sunday, May 2, 2010

Today 30 miles, Total 5,182
Campsite: With Josh and Cedar, Salem, Oregon
Weather: Cloudcover with a late sunshine.
Flat tires: 0, Total 20
Falls with bicycle: 0, Total 7

With a tourism map in hand, we head back to the center of town. We're staying of the main roads, riding along the river, before reaching the bridge to the other side. Without any problems we cross the river. We're certainly the slowest ones to do so this morning. Right after the bridge we make a sharp right onto Spring Hill road. We're avoiding once again the more travelled route and end up in a picturesque area of North Albany. It's a gentle rolling road, but it sure beats traffic any time. Even on a Sunday.

The road curves left and right, up and down. It sometimes feels as if we're going back to town. When we turn on Buena Vista road, we're finally heading north again. We keep a bright yellow field on our left.

Helmets in the fields.

It's a great day to be riding. The route is enjoyable in its variety of course and elevation. We feel like we own the road.

The road winds along the river, between the trees, through the fields.

The scenery changes constantly. From fields to trees, to a cliff going down to the river, and back to agriculture. We're riding past the hazelnut trees, alongside a field of blue berries. There is a lot to see and learn from what nature has to give.

The (blue)berry bushes are in full bloom. The bees buzz from one flower to the next working hard on creating honey.

It is Corvallis road that leads us the final miles to Independence, a little town along the Willamette river. Instead of turning onto the bridge that will take us across the river, we go towards downtown. We're in search for a lunch kind-off late breakfast restaurant. it's easily found in Andy's. We're taking our time. We've covered a lot of ground this morning. Now it's time to fuel up.

Lunch at Andy's has been very full filling.

We're stuffed. We've eaten way to much. That's not very handy, since we still have some miles to go to our destination: Salem. We've learned on this journey that it works best to eat often with smaller protions. We broke that rule today and now we're feeling it.

We make many breaks, looking at the harvests to be. On our way we even come across a yak. Who would have thought we'd find one here in the middle of Oregon!

A yak with attitude!

Eventhough we don't ride in optimal speed, we make it to the bottom of the drive way rather quickly. Now we have only one more mile to go. And what a mile that is. Why is it that the last mile is always uphill? We're experienced drive-way riders, thus we quickly unload the girls. They get to walk a bit, as we ride little by little by little.

One hill to high. We're unloading the girls. They walk, we ride... very very slowly.

We're not yet halfway up the drive or our host Josh meets us. The trailer and the girls go with him to the final destination. Amarins and Bill finally make it to the home after another half hour of riding and walking. Josh and Cedar hereby receive the Steepest Drive Way Award!

Off the bike - on the bike.

The reward for the steepest drive way is an English garden to pitch our tent in. Another first! The grass makes for a thick extra padding. We'll sleep well tonight!

How about that; setting up camp in an English garden.

The girls enjoy playing with their new play mates; twins Ainsley and Britta and big sister Luca. They're exploring the wild outdoors.

Enjoying the outdoors.

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Monday, May 3, 2010

Today 0 miles, Total 5,182
Campsite: With Josh and Cedar, Salem, Oregon
Weather: A stormy morning turned into a stunningly beautiful afternoon with gusts.
Flat tires: 0, Total 20
Falls with bicycle: 0, Total 7

We wake up with rain and wind gusts. It looks to be a stormy day. More rain and wind keep coming. But then it all leaves again, to fill the sky with the rays of the sunshine. We don't quite know what to do. The gusts of wind are very strong. The chance of rain is very high. After a couple of hours of 'yes we're leaving', 'no we're not', we decide to stay. That's the time the sun comes out to play. But the decision is made. We're going to spend the day in Salem.

We're staying put because of a very very rainy forecast...(?)

Now that we've finally decided to stay, we have an entire afternoon to explore Salem. Our hosts know exactly where to go and what to do. We're going to visit the Gold Man. It's the enduring symbol of Oregon statehood.

We're visiting the Gold Man. Up and up we go; all 121 steps.

At the foot of the Gold Man, with a beautiful view over Salem and the surrounding area.

We don't stay at the top long. The wind makes it a bit chilly. Plus we're trying to beat the school class to the stairs. When we get back down we receive a certificate proving we made it the 121 steps to the statue and safely back down again.

We continue the tour via the House of Representatives, the Senate and the Governors office. The girls don't think it's very interesting. We're sure one day they'll understand what government is all about. As Lincoln said in his Gettysburg Address: "and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth."

Thanks for the tour!

Much more in their interest is the carousel we're going to visit. The horses on the carousel are all hand carved. Each by a different artist.

The girls enjoy the carousel ride.

Robin rides the pony Magic. Each of the horses has been hand carved.

Thanks Josh and Cedar, for giving us a day to remember in Salem!

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Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Today 36 miles, Total 5,218
Campsite: At the Church of Nazarene, Canby, Oregon
Weather: Tiny tailwind pushing us ahead of the clouds.
Flat tires: 0, Total 20
Falls with bicycle: 0, Total 7

It's time to move on again. We'll have to see what the weather does. We keep the tarp on top of the trailer so we can pull it out whenever we need. And we'll be able to do so quickly.

Again a tourism map comes in handy. It takes us from the south west part of town to the north east part of town. A McDonalds provides a good break. It works out double well. As we sit down for a quick bite, the clouds break open. We quickly cover the bicycle and enjoy the rain from the inside.

Just out of Salem we cross the 45th parallel.

It happens several times. The rain comes quickly, but visibly. It gives us the time we need to find shelter and wait for it to pass. Despite all the unscheduled stops we're covering a lot of miles. This certainly has part to do with the tailwind we're enjoying.

We pass town after town, before settling for Canby. We can't quite find a place to stay in town, thus we continue a bit further north. At the Chapel of the Nazarenes we see people. Time to stop and ask if we can pitch the tent. Not a problem. They'll even open up the school building for us to use. Thank you very much!

Setting up camp is a family affair. Cheyenne helps put the poles together.

Robin tests the camping gear.

Amarins is in charge of the inside.

While the master oversees it all...

The school building comes in very handy. We're having guests tonight. Bike riders Don and Scott are coming. They're bringing supper. We met Don and Scott in Malibu, while they were on their ride from Canada to Mexico. It's good to see them again.

Supper with bikers
Don and Scott and their families.

Scotts daughter Jilly and Don's wife.

We're having a great time hearing about the finish of their journey. To our delight they even have a picture of us in the final picture album! We're officially a part of their journey now. In the mean time, the girls are playing with all the toys they can find.

Jasmine is more interested in creating art.

Thanks for coming! We had a great time.

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Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Today 20 miles, Total 5,238
Campsite: With Angela and Craig, Portland, Oregon
Weather: Rain overhead and on our head.
Flat tires: 0, Total 20
Falls with bicycle: 0, Total 7

It rains all night until eight in the morning. We worry we're going to have to stay here. We're within 20 miles of Portland, so close. When the clouds break up, we quickly pack everything on our bicycle and trailer. We're going to go for it.

No luck today. We haven't even made it to Oregon City yet or we've had to find shelter. Once the overhang of a row of trees was enough. Then we make the wrong decision. Instead of the clouds breaking up, they're breaking open. And how. Within two minutes we're almost soaked. There is no place to quickly pull over and pull the tarp over us. It's just not safe. We ride on until we find a shop with an overhang. We unload the girls, cover the bicycle and trailer and wait it out.

Easily 30 minutes go by. Just looking at the rain falling and falling and falling. This is not how we had our arrival in Portland envisioned. A bit of sunshine was in our forecast. We're making another dash for it, when it finally stops.

A late breakfast at Shari's in Galdstone. Warming up after getting soaked by a torrential down pour in oregon City.

What a day! And we're not even halfway yet. While we sit at Shari's a dark cloud comes closer and closer. We decide to be ahead of it and cover the bicycle. We're keeping an eye on it and that was a wise choice. During the rain a burst of wind catches hold of the tarp and blows the bicycle over. We run outside to put it straight up. To our surprise we see that it isn't rain that's falling. It's hail!

Portlander Carolyn is going to ride with us today. What a day of all days. But she's lives here and is quite used to and very prepared for the weather. During another dry spell we take our chances. One more time we have to seek cover, before the sun finally wins the game.

Here comes the sun!

We keep dry for the rest of the ride. Host Craig joins the ride and takes us by the elementary school. The girls are delighted with the outdoor break.

Cheyenne makes a run for Alaska, as Jasmine runs towards the playground.

Creating art on the cargo bike.

It's the middle of the afternoon when we arrive at Craig and Angela's home. We're whooped, but the day is not over yet. There is a pot luck to attend. Visitors arrive from all over Portland. Our arrival in Portland is a good reason for a get together. It's a great eclectic group of people, from all walks of life.

Portlanders go everywhere on a bicycle.

The girls are having a blast. There are so many kids to play with. They love the soccer game they play in the middle of the street.

Playing soccer in the street.

Thanks everyone for coming! We've enjoyed it very much! Thanks Craig and Angela for putting it all together!

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Thursday, May 6, 2010

Today 0 miles, Total 5,238
Campsite: With Angela and Craig, Portland, Oregon
Weather: It is sunny!.
Flat tires: 0, Total 20
Falls with bicycle: 0, Total 7

A day in Portland.

Bill starts with a dental appointment. He finally gets the chance to take care of an absessed tooth.

Cheyenne and Robin bring Libby and Ellie to school with Angela and Clementine. Next they go for a ride around the block, on bikes...

The girls just love riding bicycles. Angela is taking them around the block.

Jasmine takes advantage of the moment to enjoy some alone time. So does Amarins, she found a book to read.

Jasmine enjoys the alone time and builds a castle.

Before we ride out to our lunch appointment with Keen Footwear, we do an interview with the local Fox News Channel.

We ride from the east side of town across the river to downtown Portland. The view from the bridge is amazing. There are so many different kinds of bridges to look at. We arrive without complications with the help of Angela. Thanks for guiding us!

We enjoy the time at KEEN; a young company that provides footwear that is comfortable as well as functional. From their own website: "From the Newport [sandal that can protect your toes], KEEN created a company built on hybrid innovation, redefining the outdoors and giving back to the community." They have a business model that works, which allows them to give back to the community, whether locally or across the world.

The girls are getting sized up for sandals.

Thanks for the new sandals! And of course we won't forget the back packs too!

This visit was a shoe-in for the girls!

The weather amazes us. It keeps being sunny. On such a sunny day, we need to find a way to cool down. How about icecream? After we pick up Libby and Ellie back from school, we head for the ice ceam shop. All on foot. It's great how nice it is when you don't need a car to go places.

Crossing the street on our way to the ice cream shop. The weather is great!

Enjoying ice cream! Yummy!

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Friday, May 7, 2010

Today 0 miles, Total 5,238
Campsite: With Angela and Craig, Portland, Oregon
Weather: It is sunny and warm!.
Flat tires: 0, Total 20
Falls with bicycle: 0, Total 7

Although the sun is shining, we have a rainy errand to run. We're going to REI in downtown to find the girls some good raincoats and pants. We're going to meet Liza of KPFF there. She's offered to help us buy the gear we need. Thanks Liza!

Trying on rain jackets is a static experience.

Thanks for the jackets and the rest of the gear Liza and KPFF!

After we're all set, we ride to the tall building in which KPFF is located. We park almost on the upper deck of the parking garage, assuring a good elevator ride. Next comes the speedy elevator in the pink building, up to the 25th floor.

We're enjoying the view from the 25th floor of the pink building. This is where KPFF is located. What a sight!

Back home, we have a visit of a private school. Although initially shy, they make up for it in the end and have plenty of questions to ask.

The girls answer the questions coming from the school children.

In the evening we go out to eat at Barbara's friend Peg. Once again we go for downtown. This time the view is even more amazing.

From the 6th floor we can see Mt Hood in the evening light.

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Saturday, May 8, 2010

Today 4 miles, Total 5,242
Campsite: With Beth and
Joe, Portland, Oregon
Weather: Another warm and sunny day in Portland!.
Flat tires: 0, Total 20
Falls with bicycle: 0, Total 7

Today we're going to stay on the nort end of town, at the home of Beth and Joe, aka The Metal Cowboy as he is more know in bicycle circles. It's a short distance, so we're in no rush packing.

The girls set up a lemonade stand on the sidewalk. From time to time Cheyenne will ride around the block with Amarins to let everyone know there is 'books, toys and lemonade' for sale. She'll even add the address too. A great entrepreneurial idea, but not very successful, due to the lack of traffic on the road.

The plans have slightly changed. Bill and Craig will ride the bicycle, while all the girls go to Ellies soccer game.

We're cheering for Ellie's soccer team to win the game.

Libby and Cheyenne on the seesaw, while Jasmine balances in the middle.

Robin enjoys Rocko.

A girls day out at the soccer field.

Another sunny day, time for another ice cream. After the ice cream we cross town to our next destination.

We celebrate another sunny day with ice cream.

Thanks for having us Angela and Craig! We had a great time enjoying Portland with you!

Bus buddies.

The evening takes us with Beth and Joe to a potluck in the neighborhood.

On our way to a neighborhood potluck with Jody and Beth.

Jump jump jump.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Today 35 miles, Total 5,277
Campsite: With Beth and
Joe, Portland, Oregon
Weather: Bring on the sun!
Flat tires: 0, Total 20
Falls with bicycle: 0, Total 7

Happy Mothersday! A day we usually don't do anything in particular. Today we have plans to ride. But the offer to stay another day is very tempting too. So tempting, we take it without much hesitation.

We're staying another day in Portland. The boys and girls enjoy the outdoors around the house. Whether it's making drawings, playing in the sandbox, throwing water balloons or playing basket ball.

The girls are making mothers day drawings for Amarins

The men have other plans... They're going to plumb in the pipes for the bathroom. First step is to haul the heavy tub up the stairs.

Happy Mothersday Beth! We hope your tub will be usable soon!

As we sit outside looking at the traffic passing by, a huge group of riders comes around the corner. Bells are ringing and dresses are fluttering in the wind. What's going on here?

We have a visit of the Pretty Dress Ride group; an annual event in Portland.

It is so wonderful to feel the sunshine on us. We can't remember the time it happened last.

Jasmine weaves flowers and leaves on a stick.

Playing basketball with Enzo.

Enjoying the grass with daddy.

What a beautifully sunny weekend. We're so glad we took this weekend to stand still and enjoy the sunshine.

Bill and Joe show the result of a days work.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Today 35 miles, Total 5,277
Campsite: With Tom and Margie, Deer Island, Oregon
Weather: Overcast, but no longer in the 40s.
Flat tires: 0, Total 20
Falls with bicycle: 0, Total 7

We're all dressed in our new rain gear. A colorful tribe. Safe travels to you too Metal Cowboy!

After four warm days in Portland, we're leaving town under a cloud cover. The temperature is up, the wind stays down. Let's hit the road. We're up on the cliff as we ride across Willamette boulevard to the St. Johns bridge.

Under St. Johns Bridge.

We ride under the bridge before it curves sharp to the right and we arrive on the top deck. We merge with traffic and work our way across. It's a good warming up.

Crossing the Willamette river.

Across the river we pick up highway 30 towards Astoria. Highway 30 is part of the Lewis and Clark trail. Today we're finally going to see the Columbia river!

We're sighting the Columbia river! Washington is on the other side.

Eventhough it's cloudy, it never rains. It also never clears up enough for us to see Mount St Helens; the volcano that errupted 30 years ago. Perhaps on another day.

Colorful girls.

The route is relatively flat. We feel refreshed after the long weekend in the sun. It makes the miles go by quickly. We pass St. Helens (the town), ride through Deer Island, and find the turn off to the meeting point. At the meeting point we meet Tom and Margie. We're staying with them tonight on top of the hill. Now they're here to meet us with a trailer to put our bicycle on.

Tom secures the quint on the trailer for the final two uphill miles off highway 30.

The girls find the box of toys as soon as we get to their home. With soft beautiful music in the back ground, they play for hours.

Robin and Margie are having a teaparty.

Cheyenne has a book to read.

Robin and Jasmine have build a plane that can scoop fish out of the water.

After playing, we sit down for a delicious supper.

Supper time. Fresh home grown aspargus, a salad, oven potatoes and yummy bread with home made strawbelly preserves.

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Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Today 24 miles, Total 5,301
Campsite: Clatskanie Inn, Clatskanie, Oregon
Weather: Overcast once more.
Flat tires: 0, Total 20
Falls with bicycle: 0, Total 7

What a night. We went out like a light and slept like logs. We're taking it easy this morning. We enjoy a breakfast together. Tom, Bill and Cheyenne go out for a ride in a car. Robin and Jasmine pick up playing where they left off yesterday. Amarins is still working on fixing the logics puzzle.

Thanks Tom and Margie for your hospitality, support and making us feel at home.

It's after 10 when we're back at the road. We're hoping to make it to Westport, so tomorrow we can make it to Astoria. We're warned there are a couple of steep hills to climb first.

We're off to a good start. The grade of the first hill is not too bad. We still stop several times; catching our breaths, enjoying the view. The grade doesn't increase sharply, but suddenly it seems much steeper. We push and push, but can't seem to get back in a good pattern. It's suddenly so heavy climbing the mountain.

We've been huffing up a not too steep hill. What's going on? We're not that heavily loaded! Bill finds the problem. A rock is wedged in our front break, causing a constant breaking. No wonder it was so heavy going uphill.

That makes all the difference. We're back on track again. In Rainier we take a long break. We've seen the next hill already looming in the distance.

Up the hill between Rainier and Clatskanie. And what a hill it is!

The view from up high is beautiful. We're trying to imagine Lewis and Clark and their expedition floating down the river to the mouth of the Columbia.

A couple more rolling hills and we're in Clatskanie. We feel wooped. We sit down in a family restaurant. The girls are hungry; we're not so. We discuss what we're going to do next. Can we go the next nine miles to Westport or should we call it a day?

We check on motel rates. Everything is booked, but for a suite in the Clatskanie Inn. We're not quite sure what it means, but it has enough space to sleep us all and we get a good rate on it. Thus we take it. A pleasant surprise for the girls is the indoor swimming pool!

As we arrive in our suite, we're astonished with the space and luxury. It has a kitchen, a pull-out bed, a jacuzzi and a separate bed room for the grown-ups.

Enjoying the 'suite' life.

Once we're settled in, it's time to head for the pool.

Enjoying the swimming pool in Clatskanie.

Jasmine enjoys floating on her back in the water. It's very soothing.

Robin is doing her final stunt.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Today 36 miles, Total 5,337
Campsite: Lamplighter Motel, Astoria, Oregon
Weather: The sun on our backs, little wind in our faces.
Flat tires: 0, Total 20
Falls with bicycle: 0, Total 7

Before we leave, we fill up with as much of the continental breakfast as we can handle. We still have plenty of bread and granola bars and some fruit to help us through the day.

The ride to Westport is a piece of cake. Just gradually rolling along. It isn't long when we're past Westport. That's where the challenge begins. The first one of several...

A boat sails down the Columbia.

The highest point of the day.

For a couple of miles we enjoy the down hill ride. One more hill and we arrive in Knappa. Time for a break! A snack to pass us over till supper time in Astoria.

It's always fun to do some coloring during a break. Robin is not going to show hers though.

We're over halfway to Astoria. It keeps rolling and twisting and curving. Is this the final hill? No, not this one. How about this one? This surely must be the last one! Nope. Let's try the next. We just keep on pedaling.

At the estuary of the Columbia.

Finally we roll into Astoria. We can see the bridge across the Columbia river in the distance. What a span! We're glad we're not going over it today. The wind has slowly picked up speed.

We ask for directions to the Fort George Brewery in down town. It's not to hard to find. A warm meal awaits us there. With the compliments of Scott (Malibu biker) and his son. Thanks!

At Fort George Brewery in Astoria.

We take the time enjoying our meal. The girls have found some toys to play with. It's a great feeling to sit here at the end of Oregon. We can barely believe we've made it here already!

Cheyenne is very artistic. Robin shows off her rectangle.

At the brewery we meet Vern and his friend again. They work for the Park services of Astoria. They've shared our journey with their co-workers and have decided to offer us a motel room! Wow! Thanks guys!

We're parked in front of the Lamplighter Inn. The bridge over the Columbia is in the back ground. We keep that one for tomorrow.

To tip offf the evening, Vern takes Bill and Robin on a tour to the Astoria Column, where they have a gorgeous view of the bridge and the surrounding area.

Robin and Bill went to see the Astoria Column with Vern.

View from the Astoria Column.

We're feeling the warm goodbye like we've felt the warm welcome we've received ever since we've been in Oregon. Thanks for sharing the road with us!

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Thursday, May 13, 2010

Today 19 miles, Total 5,356
Campsite: Cape Disappointment, Washington
Weather: Sunny and warm.
Flat tires: 0, Total 20
Falls with bicycle: 0, Total 7

The sun is out. The wind is nonexistent. The day is just perfect for the big bridge crossing. We go next doors for breakfast. We load up one last time in Oregon and start heading for the entrance to the bridge.

Jasmine points out the bridge to Robin. We first have to go under and take the cloverleaf up to the bridge deck.


Entering the top deck.

It's a gradual climb, but a climb it is. We need several breaks before we reach the top. Breaks we use to enjoy the scenery. What a master piece, what a beautiful view. What would Lewis and Clark think if they saw this vast bridge spanning the width of the Columbia river?

At the top of the bridge! Now we get to roll down into Washington!

Goodbye fair state of Oregon. Until we meet again. Washington is awaiting our arrival. We must part now.

We're officialy in Washington now!

We pedal a couple more miles, through a tunnel, into Chinook. On our left we see a picnic area. Just right. We're going to celebrate yet again another state.

The girls are exploring the Washington coast.

The weather couldn't have been better. We had no wind going over the bridge. Here at the river coast it almost feels warm. A day of pure enjoyment.

Today's destination is Cape Disappointment. Coming all this way with the spirit of Lewis and Clark, and then not finish it at the edge of the continent? We don't think so!

The state roads are recognizable by the outline of George Washingtons face. Loop 100 takes us to the turn off to Cape Disappointment.

The hiker/biker camp spot is immediately after the ranger station. Close to the beach and close to the trail that leads to the Lewis and Clark interpretive center and beyond that the lighthouse. Perfect!

We quickly set up camp. It's still early in the afternoon, we have plenty of time to go on the trail and explore the cliffs to the lighthouse.

Ready for our hike on the Lewis and Clark trail.

Cheyenne has packed some supplies the old fashioned way.

The girls are very excited. The trail is an unpaved, somewhat muddy, path that leads between the bushes, up the cliffs. From time to time it leads to an overlook of the ocean. It's great to walk on the trail.

Robin is looking out over the ocean.

Following the path down and up the cliffs

The view from the trail.

Bill returns back to camp a little before the interpretive center. We're thinking Robin will want to go with him, but no way. She's not to miss out on anything. Thus all the Pedouin ladies continue.

We find the interpretive center and decide to explore the inside. We all get a card with the Lewis and Clarks trail on it. As we work our way through the hands-on exhibit, the girls find the secret rocks to emboss their cards with. On the way we learn about balancing canoes and using a sextant.

At the Lewis and Clark interpretive center. Robin loads a canoe. The canoe is set up as if it's in water. It tilts when you overload it.

There is still enough light in the day to continue the trail to the lighthouse. Amarins is not so sure. It's a long walk there, and to carry all the girls back doesn't look appealing. But there is no need to worry. The girls all lead on the trail and make it to the lighthouse without a problem.

At the lighthouse we enjoy the snack that Cheyenne brought on the trail. Great thinking Cheyenne!

After carrying it all the way to the lighthouse, it's time for a picnic.

The lighthouse at Cape Disappointment.

Robin doing acrobatics.

The way back, another 1.2 miles up and down, is no big deal for the girls. We're all having a blast. They all run and skip. Even Robin doesn't want to be carried. It isn't long when we make it back to camp.

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Friday, May 14, 2010

Today 46 miles, Total 5,402
Campsite: On the Willapa river, South Bend, Washington
Weather: Reveling in the sun.
Flat tires: 0, Total 20
Falls with bicycle: 0, Total 7

We sleep so well in the tent. From before the sun sets to after the sun rises. With us pedaling north the day light time gets longer and longer quicker and quicker. It's now light from about 6am to 8.30pm. This morning we sleep till 7.30am. There is some cloudcover on the horizon, so the sun doesn't wake us up with its rays.

Breakfast (without Mr. Coon...)

It looks to be another beautiful riding day. The clouds try to break, but they're not quite there yet. We dress up warm just the same.

The clouds are breaking, but it's still cool.

Highway 101 doesn't go exactly along the Pacific coast, it's a bit more inland here. We have a preetty view of the hills on our right, glances of Willapa Bay on our left. The scenery is very enjoyable.

Beautiful views are everywhere.

We stop at the Willapa National Wildlife Refuge for a rest and picnic. The sun has come out, it's getting warmer. There is a boardwalk to explore. With a ranger we hunt for salamanders.

The girls are on a walk with ranger Marianne at the Willapa Wildlife Refuge Center. They're on the hunt for salamanders.

Robin holds on tight to the net.

After basking in the sun for quite a while, it's hard to peel ourselves away from the warm pavement. But onward we go. We don't have a destination today. That feels great. We just take every mile as it comes. The weather is great, daylight is long, we'll find a place somewhere.

The road takes us to the bridge across the Naselle river.

We follow the Naselle river for a little while. The water must have been really high once if we look at the piles of driftwood. The swaying grass on the rivers edge adds to the beauty.

The force of water. Incredible.

Through the planted forests we go. Up and down the hills. Some forests are further along then others. The naked hills are a weird sight, the new growth on them look funny between the decaying left overs.

At the top of one hill we find a surprise. Not just a surprise, an icecream surprise! Eddie, whom we met in Ilwaco and Cape Disappointment, is on his route to make deliveries. He has a special delivery for us!

Special delivery from Eddie: icecream on the side of the road.

Who would have thought. Here we sit in the middle of the Lost Coast of Washington, eating an icecream. Well, actually, two each. Thanks Eddie!

After this delicious refreshment, we're hitting the hills again. Half mile up, half mile down. On and on. It's like we're out for a stroll in the park, but then on a bicycle. We go mile by mile.

Fly girls!

The wind is picking up a little. It's coming from the west. In a couple of miles the road will curve to the east. That would mean a nice tail wind. We decide to go the extra miles and take the tail wind into South Bend.

Arrival in South Bend.

We choose a chinese restaurant for supper. While we're there we hear we could rogue camp on the lot across the street. Perfect for us. It's along side the river too!

Bill unrolls the tent, while the fly lays out to dry.

Setting up camp at the river.

Jasmine explores the area while we're setting up camp. She makes an interesting discovery...

Jasmine puts the crab back together again.

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Saturday, May 15, 2010

Today 29 miles, Total 5,431
Campsite: Best Value Inn, Aberdeen, Washington
Weather: Love it!
Flat tires: 0, Total 20
Falls with bicycle: 0, Total 7

Another night in the tent. Listening to the sounds of the water, the seagulls in the sky and two geese honking on the pier.

Jasmine examines her crab. It's still as she left it. Cheyenne helps packing up the tent and the gear. This time she ties everything on the trailer by herself. What a helper.

Loaded and ready to go.

We're ready to roll when Bill notices the front tire is about to go. We're going to risk riding on it for a coule of miles to Raymond, where we need to do some shopping. That'll be a good break to exchange the tire. From South Bend to Raymond we ride on a bicycle path.

On the bike trail from South Bend to Raymond.

Silly silly girl.

In Raymond we find a McDonalds with playground. The girls play, Bill fixes the tire, Amarins goes shopping. This works out just fine.

We're taking preventative measures. The old tire is off, the new tire is on. Now we're without spares. But these should last till Vancouver Island.

That's better, now we don't have to worry about going down the hills anymore. The bicycle path stopped in Raymon, so we ride on the shoulder of the 101 again. Sometimes it's wide, sometimes it's nonexcistent. Traffic is light, the sun is in our back. We're so fortunate to have another pretty day to ride in.

The hills are a bit tougher today. A mile (or two) up, a mile (or two) down. On a regular basis we feel we're really high, the view is gorgeous over the tree topped hills.

Lunch in Artic.

Cheyenne and Jasmine are making flower necklaces.

Amarins is the honorary reciepient of Cheyenne's necklace.

Today we do have a destination in mind: Aberdeen. It's less then 10 miles from Artic, though steep ones they are! What a climb we're in for. Our focus is on the road and on pedaling. Until Amarins peeks to her right. Stop! Look at that! A snow capped mountain. All by itself, far on the horizon. From where we are and the direction we're looking at, we believe it's Mt Rainier. It's too far away to catch it clearly in a picture. But it's a sight we'll not easily forget.

The view keeps on giving. Another crest and we have the mountain tops of Olympic National Park in our sight. Also snow capped. It's the snow that makes them look so high. The route we're taking takes us all around them. We're looking forward to it.

The mountains of Olympic National Park are on the horizon.

The view of the mountains is so overwhelmingly beautiful. No matter how tired we are, we stop again and again to admire the view.

From the crest we roll down into Cosmopolis. We've travelled many miles this week, almost 200! And we're feeling it. Before arrival in Aberdeen, we take a break at a playground.

We're taking a break in Cosmopolis. A playground gives the girls a great outlet.

Cheyenne goes round and round.

With the final strokes we arrive in Aberdeen, at a motel right off the highway. What a day. What a week.Click here for more pictures of today.

Sunday - Tuesday, May 16-18, 2010

Today 0 miles, Total 5,431
Campsite: Best Value Inn, Aberdeen, Washington
Weather: Great for resting.
Flat tires: 0, Total 20
Falls with bicycle: 0, Total 7


It has arrived: rain. A bit earlier then we'd expected. With such a great riding week behind us, we decide we can use the rest. We're taking the day off.

At mid morning the rain goes away and the sun comes out again. It's turning into a beautiful day. Amarins and Cheyenne go out to do laundry, some shopping and have some time together.


We're tired. We have things to do; responding to e-mail, updating the website. We're going to stay another day. The girls don't mind a bit. Cheyenne enjoys her puzzle book. Jasmine uses the sidewalk as a track for running. Robin does the jumping up and down on the beds.

Cheyenne enjoys her variety puzzle book.

Jasmine runs laps on the motel grounds.


It's raining again. Bummer. We're staying another day in Aberdeen.

On a side note.

We sometimes wonder what keeps us going when it comes to keeping the website updated. The hours spent on preparing the pictures; taking, selecting, cropping, uploading. The hours spent on writing the day's journey. The hours spent uploading, checking and correcting.

When we are so tired from riding all day, the experiences of the day, the creation of quality time with the girls; what is it that keeps us to the task of updating the website and replying to e-mail? It is the clear moments of realization that we are the fortunate ones. We are the fortunate ones to be able to go on this journey. We are the fortunate ones to have taken the risk and having the courage to venture out on a bicycle across the country.

We have taken it upon ourselves to share our experiences, the people we meet and the scenery we see with you. The joy we find in inspiring you on your journey is incredible.

We thank you for being on this journey with us. We thank you for your encouragement and your ongoing support. It is you that gives us the strength to finish this journey strongly to the end. Thank you!

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Today 27 miles, Total 5,458
Campsite: Promised Land Campground, Humptulips, Washington
Weather: Caught in rainstorm after rainstorm.
Flat tires: 1, Total 21
Falls with bicycle: 0, Total 7

We've decided to go on. We're hoping for a dry morning which should take us to about halfway Lake Quinault. We dress the girls in their rain gear, just in case. Then we're on the road again.

We've had breakfast at the motel. Our panniers are full with food items, drinks are in the front of the trailer.

Highway 101 curves from Aberdeen to Hoquiam before heading north towards Lake Quinault. Not many towns on our route. Thus not many places for shelter in case it does rain.

We're on the edge of the rainforests.

We don't stay on the edge too long. The rain comes to visit and decides to stay on our side. Well, actually right on top of us. We've made a bad call to ride today. Within moments we're soaked. The tarp won't help us now.

We putter through it until we find a store near Humptulips. We take the time to warm up and dry up as good as that gets. Bill walks across the road where he's seen a tavern. Perhaps we can set up camp in this area; providing there is a dry spell.

He comes back with a better plan. A local visiting the tavern informs us of a campground seven miles up the road. It's closed for the winter, but we'd be fine to camp there. Instead of riding through the rain he is giving us a ride there with our gear. Bill will come back with him to pick up the bicycle.

We ride over to the tavern. Inside we have our warm meal for the day. Then it's on to the campground.

Bill helps set up camp. We've found a great spot. Under the pavillion. We're staying dry while we set up camp. There is also a wood stove under the pavillion. When Bill gets back with the bicycle he's going to light it. There are piles and piles of firewood available.

Camp Pedouin at Promised Land Campground.

We're not the only bicyclists caught by the rain. Two young men arrive shortly after us at the campground. There is plenty of space under the pavillion to put up their tent as well.

Carrying wood up the stairs is hard work. Cheyenne helps Robin with the last step.

Josh and Jeremy just started their southbound journey three days ago. Three rainy days. They are on their way to San Diego. The girls enjoy the guys' company, and are very 'helpful' with setting up their camp.

Jasmine gets turned upside down by Jeremy and Josh.

Bill gets the fire going very well. We hover around the stove to get warm. We rotate wet clothes and dry them one after the other. How fortunate to have a woodstove to our availability. How fortunate that Bill knows how to work it well.

Jasmine is figuring out how to beat dad in Skipbo.

Cheyenne sows her shirt.

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Thursday, May 20, 2010

Today 18 miles, Total 5,476
Campsite: Lake Quinault Inn, Amanda Park, Washington
Weather: More and more rain.
Flat tires: 0, Total 21
Falls with bicycle: 0, Total 7

We hear the young men getting ready to go. It urges us on to get loaded too. We stayed nice and dry under the pavillion. Bill starts another fire so the girls can stay warm before we leave.

Robin continues sleeping, while everyone else is packing up.

It looks like another ominous day. Cloudy and most likely with rain coming. Josh and Jeremy get all dressed up for another day of riding in the rain. Their aim is Raymond today. That's quite a haul.

Jeremy is all ready for more rain. Cheyenne needs to grow a 'little' more before she can fit his bicycle.

Our aim is Lake Quinault. We'll sit out the rest of the storm there. Bill still has a tire to fix before we can go.

Bill fixes a flat trailer tire. We've been able to milk it yesterday; filling it up regularly.

It almost looks like the sun is coming through. We want to believe it so badly. We're trying to will it to happen.

We're making a run for it.

It's not four miles or we're hitting the first rain. It actually catches up with us. We quickly pull out the tarp and do our regular tarp routine. The girls have become quite accustomed to it. Robin likes her little peek hole so she can see Bill. Jasmine sits in Amarins' spot and plays games with Cheyenne. Bill holds up the bicycle and Amarins provides for snacks.

A good thing we covered up. It's not just rain that's hitting us. It's hail! We're beginning to believe we should have stayed put under the pavillion.

We quickly fold the tarp back up when it looks all clear. For several more times we pull it out. Between each cover-up we're getting closer to town. We're very ready to see the town limits.

Almost to town!

We cross the Quinault river and see a restaurant up ahead. As well as a thick rain cloud coming our way. We arrive under the awning as the first sprinkles start falling down on us. The girls quickly hop off and receive a warm welcome at the door. We all huddle inside and are warmed by the welcome and the temperature inside.

Not many miles, but quite a haul. We've made it to town, now we need to figure out what to do next. First things first, we're going to have a hot meal. After we're warmed up inside and out, we're staying a little while longer. The girls find lots of joy in the coloring supplies and available games.

The girls are coloring while we are warming up in the restaurant.

The puzzles, games and coloring supplies kept the girls busy for a long time.

Jasmine holds the power rangers puzzle.

We've gathered enough stamina to go a little further to the Lake Quinault Inn. That looks to be our best bet for the next day or so. On our way there we stop by the elementary school and talk a little while with the kids. So nice when it's dry.

Views of Lake Quinault.

We find a great place at the inn. They provide us with a suite: Two separate bedrooms and a sitting area. So luxurious!

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Friday, May 21, 2010

Today 0 miles, Total 5,476
Campsite: Lake Quinault Inn, Amanda Park, Washington
Weather: Staying dry.
Flat tires: 0, Total 21
Falls with bicycle: 0, Total 7

We're spending the day at the inn. We need to recharge our watered down batteries.

Amarins takes Cheyenne and Jasmine on a hike between rains.

At the entrance to Olympic Park.

This humonguous tree stands tall along the road into the park.

Next door is a little store we go to for refreshments.

Our suite at Quinault Lake Inn.

Jasmine is very creative with tissues. This time she has built a house and a snow man.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Today 48 miles, Total 5,524
Campsite: Hoh Oxbow Campground, Washington
Weather: The sun!
Flat tires: 0, Total 21
Falls with bicycle: 0, Total 7

The sun is out. The road is calling. We're loading up and head for breakfast at JJ's. With a sturdy breakfast in us, we're ready to step on it.

On the road again, with the sun on our side.

Today we're hoping to make a big impact in the distance to Port Angeles. We can hardly believe we're this close to the port town. We weren't sure we'd make it by the end of May. For now all looks like it goes as planned.

Chipping away at the distance to Port Angeles. With the sun on our side we go the distance.

It's quite a climb out of the Lake Quinault valley. But then we get some nice cruising out of it.

Jasmine is enjoying the flight down the mountain.

Cheyenne on the road.

We're each in our own thoughts, pedaling away. Rain is not on our minds. Not on the horizon either. Clouds yes, rain no. Keep on riding Pedouins!

Playing rock-stick baseball in Queets.

As we ride closer and closer to the coast, a couple in a Ford pick-up waves us down. They're asking if we've had lunch yet. Well, not really. The snack in Queets is long gone.

Out comes the lunch box. Bread, cheese, sandwich meat, lettuce, tomatoes, bananas, apples, homemade plum jelly, water and icetea. Wow. What a surprise.

Enjoying a surprise lunch on the way to Kalaloch.

The girls attack Chris.

Thanks Debbie and Chris!

We're stuffed when we get back in the saddle. That was good. The fresh vegetables, the fruit, the protein. Delicious!

The scenery changes again. Though still coniferous trees, it opens up more. Occasionally we see the ocean through the trees.

Sneeking a peek at the Pacific Ocean.

At Kalaloch it opens up wide. We pull off the road to enjoy the view for another moment. Pure enjoyment on the bicycle.

Beautiful view at Kalaloch. Our final stretch of Pacifi Ocean.

A Pacific view.

We're starting to feel the distance, but don't want to stop quite yet. We have the wind a little to our back. We're going north once more. We're going to Ruby Beach at least, then the road goes inland again.

The last view of the Pacific Ocean at Ruby Beach. From here we're turning inland, then up the inside passage before crossing the Gulf of Alaska.

On our map of Olympic National Park we see a primitive campground on the Hoh river. It's easily another 10 miles from the beach. We decide to go for it anyway. The evenings are long and it's just now mid afternoon.

'Now what Dad?!'

The miles get heavier and heavier. We're gradually climbing up the Hoh valley. The river winds with the terrain, but the road goes fairly straight. Up and over, up and over.

The Hoh river. The campground is on the left bank.

The campground is in sight. Amarins walks into it, just to see how far it is, before we dip down in it. One of the spots has a fairly level gravel bed. That's our pick for tonight.

Setting up camp. Everyone helps.

It hasn't been five minutes yet after setting up camp or the rain starts coming down. That's quite unexpected. Where did that come from? We're very thankful that we made it here when we did. We're very thankful that we have a good tent to stay dry in.

We prefer the comfort of our sleeping mats versus 'really' roughing it.

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Sunday, May 23, 2010

Today 29 miles, Total 5,553
Campsite: Bear Creek Campground, Washington
Weather: Another tag day with the rain.
Flat tires: 0, Total 21
Falls with bicycle: 0, Total 7

All night long it pours rain. We'd anticipated three fairly dry days (of course based on the weather forecast...). Nothing like this. By eight o'clock it finally slows down. Eventually it stops totally. We even see the sun for a short period of time. That's our sign to pack up and get going.

With the distance we covered yesterday, we're within 14 miles from Forks. We hope to arrive there for a late breakfast. We eat a quick bite to get us started, then continue on our way.

To rain or not to rain? That's the question...

A couple of miles before town, it happens again. Rain is upon us. It seems to happen a lot when we're within reach of town. Very frustrating. We find shelter under an overhanging tree.

Rain it is. We're under cover under a mossy tree. It looks like it has rained here before...

It's almost lunch when we finally arrive in Forks. We don't see any place to eat until we're in the middle of town (which is a big way of describing this small town). A pizzaria catches our eye. Basically the only place that looks like it serves food. Lots of cars in the parking lot means something. Lets follow our herd mentality for now.

As this group of friends were sitting here, prior to us coming in, they were complimenting themselves on a wet weather hike in the rain forest. Once they saw us come in, and heard our story, they admitted to us they hadn't accomplished anything as difficult as what we had done. They were laughing among themselves and stating how they were entertained the moment they saw us pull up on our bike.

Overhearing our conversation, this couple decided to pay for our lunch! Thanks!

We staggered into the restaurant. Refreshed we come back outside. It's dry for now. As we're about to continue, an older couple stops us. They own a bed and breakfast in town and offer us a place to stay for the night. It is very, very tempting. Since we've only done 14 miles, we decide not to take them up on their offer, but to put in a couple more miles.

The road takes us to Beaver, where a giant carved beaver welcomes us to town.

Close encounter with a beaver in Beaver, WA.

We arrive in the Sol Duc river valley. Pass the turn to Neah Bay, the most northwestern point of the lower 48. Go through Saphho and arrive at Bear Creek Campground.

The girls play under the trees, while our fly lays out to dry from last night's soaking.

We quickly set up camp. Anticipating rain anytime. But this time it stays away. The girls have found a playmate at the next door campground. Together they work on building a pioneer home under the trees.

Working to cover the 'doorway' to their imaginary pioneer cabin with leaves and branches.

Time for a picnic break with camp friend Kristal.

They play for hours. Pretending to be pioneers. Their imagination is incredible. It's great to watch them run around and making up stories.

Even a day like this comes to an end. Before the mosquitoes gather around we hop in the tent. Cheyenne finishes her elf book and decides to give it to Kristal in the morning as a reminder of their playtime together. Jasmine, Robin and Amarins start on a game of Skipbo.

Cheyenne is showing the map she's coloring in the elf book. She's giving the book to Kristal in the morning. Cheyenne's finished reading it. It'll be a good memory for Kristal to remember her by.

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Monday, May 24, 2010

Today 43 miles, Total 5,596
Quality Inn, Port Angeles, Washington
Weather: Overcast with diamonds of sunshine.
Flat tires: 0, Total 21
Falls with bicycle: 0, Total 7

A dry night. Yes! First thing we do is look up at the sky, trying to forecast the weather. A lone ray of sunshine nudges us on. It isn't long before we're loaded. It isn't long before we're at the Bear Cafe for a good breakfast.

Onward we go. Highway 101 goes towards Lake Crescent, follows it for about 12 miles, the climbs out of the lake valley before curving its way to Port Angeles. Our goal for today is to go at least past the lake. There is no campground between the lake and Port Angeles, but we're sure we'll find a place to sleep somewhere.

Just crossed the Sol Duc river. One out of many times.

Though overcast, it is a beautiful day to be riding. So far it doesn't look like it's going to rain. We have a little head wind, but take that over rain anytime. We're rolling up and down for over 10 miles before we see the beginning to the lake off in the distance.

Lake ahead!

At a road side store (still closed for the season) we find a picnic table overlooking the lake. We're pulling out our picnic supplies and start snacking while enjoying the beauty of the lake. The girls explore the lake shore in the meantime. A little creek feeds in it. A trail leads to it. Lots of fun pretending to fish for salmon.

Cheyenne at the lake.

Amarins presses the warning button, before we start our ride on the lake road. This results in blinking lights at the beginning of the lake. This way the faster traffic is aware of bicyclists on the road. They'll be blinking for the next hour. The road is narrow and windy and has a little shoulder. Still it's nothing we haven't driven before.

Riding along the lake.

Another hour of riding. We've covered almost eight miles. The lights will stop blinking now. We happen to be at the turn off to the lake lodge and decide to get off the road for a while for a bite to eat. The path leads us between the trees to the lake shore where the old lodge is located.


While we eat we're surprised by visitors. A couple from Sequim has been looking for us. They knew we wer going to be on the road today by our tracker. They're a bit concerned about the upcoming hills; narrow and windy with little shoulder. They offer to load the bicycle in the bed of their pick-up and take us over the hills. Thanks, but we must decline.

Cora and Jasmine.

We continue up the windy road. It's beautiful. Lost of pretty views over the lake. Small waterfalls appear on our right on a regular basis. We start looking for them as soon as we can hear the fall of the water.

One of many waterfalls along the lake.

The road starts climbing before we're to the end of the lake. Could this be the first climb already? It's a very gradual climb. Not too long either. We feel great after the relaxing break at the lodge. It isn't long and we're to the end of this climb. Wow, that went fast.

The next miles wind down the hill, with little uphill climbing to do. It's amazing and totally unexpected. Mile after mile we fly through the country side. Snow covered mountains on our right. What a majestic view. We're like little midgets between the giants.

Once we're out of the lake bed, we're cruising down the mountain for several miles.

We're stunned with the ground we cover. As well as with the ease it's going. When we see that Port Angeles is only another 13 miles we don't have to think long. We're going to town today!

Only 13 more miles to Port Angeles! Can we do it? Yes we can!

Five miles later we're at the bottom of our last hill in the contiguous United States. We're very tickled with ourselves. When we arrive in Port Angeles we will have proven that you CAN ride up the pacific coast from south to north. It's a good thing we don't listen to people telling us that we can't do what we're doing. Part of our motto is to listen to Yeah sayers not to Nay sayers. Though we do listen to advice and take it where applicable.

At the bottom of our last hill (or mountain) in the contiguous United States!

The girls are armed with a jolly rancher before we start the hill.

What's another hill after all the ones we've climbed? Just another hill. We pedal and rest, pedal and rest. Then here we are!

The Pedouins did it again! At the top of the mountain once more!

The final miles to town go by in a blink. Not all down hill mind you, but climbs not really worth mentioning. We see water once more. It's the Strait of Juan de Fuca. We can see all the way to the other side! Vancouver Island!!!

Vancouver Island across the water!

We about bounce off our seats with excitement. A couple more hills and dips and we're in the town of Port Angeles. What an incredible ride today.

Port Angeles marks the end of the seventh leg of our journey! Only one more leg to go!

Down into town we go!

We're a day sooner then expected. For tomorrow night we have a stay at the Quality Inn lined up. Thanks to Steve and Beverly, our friends from South Carolina. We decide to go there today and add another night to our stay.

No matter the cluttered wire view. It's still a drop dead gorgeous view from our room window!

Looking at the other side, we can see the harbor and Vancouver Island in the distance.

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Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Today 0 miles, Total 5,596
Quality Inn, Port Angeles, Washington
Weather: Clouds on the horizon, sun high in the sky.
Flat tires: 0, Total 21
Falls with bicycle: 0, Total 7

A beautiful day to explore Port Angeles. We can see most of the down town area from our motel. Straight to the north we see the ferry port. To the northeast is the pier with a watch tour.

First we stop at the lobby to enjoy a continental breakfast; juices, coffee, tea, cereal (hot and cold), yoghurt, toast, waffles, boiled eggs, biscuits and gravy, breakfast pastries. It's quite a spread.

Robin is enjoying her breakfast pick.

Jasmine and Cheyenne are playing computer games in the lobby.

Amarins brings Robin back to the room, While Cheyenne and Jasmine play a little longer on the computer.

Overlooking the downtown area of Port Angeles with the ferry pier.

It's mid morning when Bill takes the girls into town. They walk the streets, find the post office, the bicycle store, a cookie store, the pier and eventually a playground.

Enjoying a cookie in downtown Port Angeles.

Look and find!

Ship ahoy at the harbor.

In the afternoon it's time to do laundry. A task Bill and Cheyenne take upon them. Robin and Jasmine play some cards, while Amarins crops some pictures.

Jasmine is teaching Robin how to play skipbo.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Today 0 miles, Total 5,596
Quality Inn, Port Angeles, Washington
Weather: A rainy day.
Flat tires: 0, Total 21
Falls with bicycle: 0, Total 7

A rainy day in Port Angeles. If you don't know the mountains are there, or that there is an island across the water, you wouldn't find out today either.

Cheyenne and Amarins spend the day in the lobby, working and playing on the computer. Cheyenne even gets to help bake the cookies in the afternoon.

Robin and Jasmine stay with Bill in the room, playing, jumping and watching tv.

Not a day to go out exploring.

Jasmine build a house with the markers. It's a house with flowers in it, that you need to water. She's looking forward to having hanging baskets in Alaska that she can take care off.

The girls are very creative in their drawing abilities. They are developing their own style.

Art by Cheyenne.

Art by Jasmine.

Art by Robin.

We're enjoying our stay at the Quality Inn. We're very thankful for the complimentary nights we've received. Thanks employers of the Quallity Inn in Port Angeles, Washington!

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Today 6 miles, Total 5,602
Campsite: With Steve and Mirja, Port Angeles, Washington
Weather: A rainy day.
Flat tires: 0, Total 21
Falls with bicycle: 0, Total 7

Our last full day in the lower 48! Tomorrow we take off on our ferry and foreign adventure!

It's time to put an end to our luxurious stay at the Quality Inn. Today we're staying on the east side of town with Steve and Mirja.

The girls are fighting over who gets to hold Lynn's hand, as we're saying our goodbye to the Quality Inn in Port Angeles. Thanks for the hospitality!

We're riding to eastern Port Angeles. That's where we have a place to stay tonight. We stop by the post office, drive by the bicycle store to pick up another tire, then head down to the pier. From here we pick up the trail that goes all the way to Sequim.

On the trail to Sequim.

It's a bit a rainy foggy day. We can't see Vancouver Island today. If we hadn't seen it before You wouldn't know there is an island out there.

It is very misty. We can't see Vancouver Island today.

The trail is very enjoyable, until it turns into gravel, and finds us in some sharp curves. That doesn't quite work for our 18 feet long contraption.

The trail throws us for a loop, or actually a hairpin. We're taking the girls off, unhook the trailer and carry the ailend of the bicycle around the corner before we can continue the trail.

Back on pavement. That works much better. We go for several miles, go through a little gate and end up in a neighborhood. We curve around a golf course before arriving at a beautiful home on the Juan de Fuca straight.

For supper we're going to the Bella Italiano restaurant, where a meal is awaiting us. We'r going by car this time. We're thinking about taking the regular road tomorrow to the ferry instead of the trail. Riding the car up and down the ferocious hills quickly helps us change our minds.

A delicious meal later we're on our way back. A day of little riding, but full of experiences. With bunches of excitement we go to bed, thinking of the ferry ride and the new country tomorrow.

Our last full day in the lower 48! Tomorrow we take off on our ferry and foreign adventure!

Continue the journey:
from Washington to Alaska!

Click on the link to get a head start on what our route looks like, which ferries we're planning on taking and when we expect to arrive in Whittier, Alaska.

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