The Great Pacific Coast Escape

Day 1: The trip begins!
(Bellevue, WA to Sequim)

date: Monday August 5, 2002
daily miles: 84 miles (135 km)
total miles: 84 miles (135 km)


I-90 Floating Bridge -- Bellevue in the background

Oh no!! I have a “slight” problem – all my stuff doesn't fit into the trailer. This isn’t good. Quick repack and I’m ready I think. I left my extra shoes plus my pillow behind... I hope I won’t need these on the trip...

10:22am -- E-mails are checked. Out of Rachel's house I go. Stopped at the Post Office and dropped off last minute bills as I roll out of Bellevue. I rode by my former employer Infospace, Inc as it seemed rather fitting. I saw Naveen pulling in and gave him a not-too-friendly salute for the use of my time these past two years. Didn't see anybody else that I knew outside... oh well... my friends that are there I will stay in contact with for a long time.


Leaving Seattle

My route headed over the I-90 “floating bridge” via the bike/walker lane. It’s actually a pretty cool route with no traffic -- but supposedly it will disappear fairly soon so the commuter buses will have their "own special lane" then (and won’t have to share the commuter lane with carpools vehicles). What is sad is that bicyclists won't have another route to get from Seattle to the Eastside (via Bothell or Renton and add twenty extra miles) -- it just won't be the same or as scenic.

I bombed through the Seattle traffic downtown -- sidewalks at first and then the street -- I tend to go faster than the cars do. I received some strange looks in regard to my trailer and the big American flag waving from the back of it! Ended up at the ferry terminal and purchased my ferry ticket to go across the Puget Sound from Seattle to Bainbridge Island. There is no turning back now.


The Seattle Space Needle
The excitement on the ferry consisted of me leaving my bike and trailer and running off and taking pictures from the back of the ferry of Seattle as it disappeared into the distance. That was until the announcement was made for the “bicyclist to get back to his bike with his bags on it”. It seems since I took off and it wasn’t a familiar looking vehicle (due to the trailer), security was alerted and thought it might be a bomb. Paranoid!!! (no – they didn’t search it)

As we were rolling up to the unloading dock, I received my first "are you the cyclist with the trailer". Yup! Then the inevitable -- "Where are you headed? Bainbridge has some great rides." My answer was “Ummm -- San Diego”. I loved the look on the ladies face as her jaw dropped - I bet this can be fun once you get used to it!!

Now the serious riding for the day started – through Poulsbo – over the Hood Canal Bridge -- and then onto the town of Sequim. As for myself? My legs feel good. My food today consisted of numerous Powerbars until I reached the campground. I sneaked into Sequim for Gatorade, a banana, and an incredible roast beef w/Swiss cheese sandwich with all the trimmings. (The counter gal knew from my look that I was famished... so she built this truly incredible sandwich. Thanks!!)
Hood Canal Bridge

My Poulsbo story -- riding up the big hill out of the town of Poulsbo and I see this gal in her old chrome-bumper MGB sportscar. I wave as she passed -- but I don't think she saw me. Five minutes up the hill -- there she was on the side of the road -- her MGB was having electrical problems (no surprise given the Lucas electrical system). I helped her push it up the road (ie: up the hill!) and eventually got it restarted by bump starting it by rolling it down another hill. Had a chance to talk with her for a minute -- but she was stressed about the car and was panicked it was going to stop again. Just my luck -- I run into a cute gal who has a penchant for old British sportscars and I didn't get her name and number...

Enough for tonight – I’m tired now and ready to go to sleep.

Mark

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The Great Pacific Coast Escape
Introduction time
Two weeks before - Welcome to "BOB"
One week before - Panic time!
The trip begins! (Bellevue, WA to Sequim)
Awesome sights to be seen (Sequim to Sapho)
The longest day (Sapho to Ocean Shores)
Casual cruise to pavement pain (Ocean Shores to Raymond)
I survived the bridge!! (Raymond to Ft. Stevens, Oregon)
I talked with a real bicycle tourist! (Ft. Stevens to Cape Lookout)
Hills, hills and more hills (Cape Overlook to Newport)
It was slow going today (Newport to Florence)
Kickback, relax and just surf (at Honeyman Camp in Florence)
Time to escape the convention (Florence to Bandon)
Sputter, misfire, detour... and a new direction (Bandon to Brookings)
Please turn off the fog machine!! (Brookings to Prairie Creek Redwoods, California)
Keeping it simple (Prairie Creek Redwoods to KOA in Arcata)
Enter the 'Avenue of the Giants' (KOA in Arcata to Weott)
Running on empty (Weott to Leggett)
Back to the Pacific Ocean (Leggett to Van Damme SP at Mendocino)
The Good, the Bad and the Ugly (Van Damme SP to Stillwater SP)
Just another simple day (Stillwater SP to Samuel Taylor SP in Bodega Bay)
What were you expecting -- Baywatch??? (Samuel Taylor SP to Half Moon Bay SP)
There actually is sunshine in California (Half Moon Bay to Sunset Beach in Watsonville)
Sleeping in late means a late start huh? (Sunset Beach SP to Pfeiffer-Big Sur SP)
Riding above the clouds (Pfeiffer-Big Sur SP to San Simeon SP
The ranger told me that I probably wouldn't want to camp here (San Simeon SP to Oceana SP)
I see cracks!! (Oceana SP to El Capitan SP near Goleta)
Are we there yet? (El Capitan SP to Leo Carillo SP near Malibu)
The “City of Angels” in one day (Leo Carillo SP to Doheny SP at Dana Point)
The end has arrived (Dana Point to San Diego)
Equipment Reflections
Personal Gear Review
Review -- Planning and Maps
Would I do it all again?