Well two things happened today – about 12:19 today we moved into a new time zone and lost an hour! And we are about 3 miles from the eastern border of Oregon (Idaho here we come!!!)
Beautiful sunshiny day – about 50 degrees when we left Baker City this morning about 8:00 AM. Had my sleeves on but great riding. No major hills today and intermittent tailwinds so this morning we cruised along. Beautiful ranches, farms, and sparse population. Train tracks paralleled most of our ride and there are lots of trains out here … fun to watch (and we never crossed tracks). Mostly we have had cattle guards to cross but they are pretty consistent and straight so just a body jarring.
We had to do intermittent portions of our ride this morning on Interstate 84 (I think the speed limit is 75) – but there is actually a huge breakdown lane so less scary than some of the roads we took out of Astoria. The 2 biggest dangers are road debris (flat tires) and the exit/entry ramps. For us, we avoided the debris. The ABB staff told us to never enter/cross the exit ramp if there are vehicles coming up behind you. Thank goodness it was Sunday morning and not a lot of traffic. All good. The longest stretch on the Interstate was 10 miles and then we would get parallel side roads for a while.
One of the segments they had us taking was under construction so most of us got held at the 30 miles sag stop while they figured an alternate route. They did, and we were off,,, but it meant we biked with more people than we are used to. Since we are lazy risers many of these folks are gone before we are ready to leave. The majority of the riders here are pretty vigilant but there are a few with their mind somewhere else. As I was passing a group of stopped riders (and calling “on your left”) this one turkey almost bumped me into the rumble strip and highway. You should n have heard me scream! I did receive apologies later from every other member of the group but the party responsible. Go figure!
Our second SAG was on the Snake River. Beautiful, huge, meandering … many fishermen out..I think famous for its catfish. After lunch we only had about 25 miles to go. Long, pretty straight open road with farms alongside AND a headwind. Why are the last 20 miles a challenge?But, with one minor detour and the changing wind we found our motel. Yeah! Mechanics at 4:00 PM – gosh that is what time it was – because of the time change and the road construction we were “late” I wanted to get the shifting on my bike tuned up. Our bikes have both been very good. (I hate to say it) I think it is because they love their daily bath. We both brought our old seats and changed to them for yesterday’s ride. A huge difference! Think we will probably be switching back and forth to relieve pressure. Apparently saddle sores are a big issue with many here. We have been sore but not terribly … I think maybe the first time in my life I rode all day, every day for 8 days straight. So tomorrow … another 8:00 AM departure and maybe 65 miles – I am sure the city biking will be a challenge but then foot power for a day and a half. Looking forward to sleeping in!