The Great Pacific Coast Escape

Day 3: The longest day
(Sapho to Ocean Shores)

date: Wednesday August 7, 2002
daily miles: 142 miles (229 km)
total miles: 307 miles (494 km)


Lunch break along the road

Today started really slow -- tired and not much energy -- but I’m not really stiff. Maybe it was because I was still hungry from the night before? I started cycling towards Forks, WA – with the intentions of taking a day detour off to La Push on the beach. Immediately after making the turnoff, I was run off the road by RV'ers! Since the road shoulder wasn’t that great and I wasn’t too enthusiastic (plus I was hungry!), I just said "forget this" to this particular detour for today. I'll be back later on a motorcycle of course! Eventually I get into the town of Forks and realize there isn't a whole lot there. Saw and kid on a new bicycle and waved to him -- but I was looking for water and food to replenish my fuel tank.


My first sight of the Pacific Ocean

Amazingly the kid eventually caught up with me at the ranger station in town -- he was huffing and puffing and sweating like crazy. I guess he chases all the bicyclists through town when he can. He just got a new bike – he didn't realize his old mountain bike was of enough value to steal -- but I guess it happens in small towns as well as the big ones. So I talked with the kid for a while. This kid's dream is to tour the world by bicycle – his dream is due to seeing everyone else going through Forks and the stories that they tell him when he catches up with him. So if you see him on his new blue BMX-style bike -- remember to stop and say "hi"!

I was truly amazed by the Pacific Ocean and the rivers and the sights that are in this part of our great country. Stopped and talked to a fly fisherman and he was doing pretty good as he didn't want to talk while the fishing was good! (Obviously a good sign for him!) One thing today though – I was frustrated at times by the poor repavement job -- I just chattered along for over 80 miles today on not great pavement. I almost gave up and stopped real early today -- until a Powerbar and Gatorade refill in Amanda Park miraculously revitalized me. So I decided to just keep riding because all of a sudden I felt great again.

I ended up going into what is referred to as the "zone" – that incredible feeling you get where every pedal stroke feels like perfection, your mind doesn't think of much as all it is doing is enjoying the experience of cycling too much, the miles just disappear with what hardly feels any effort at all. This is one of my true joys in cycling and today this one lasted for over four hours.


The fisherman

OK – I’m sure people will ask. Do I by nature cycle 142 miles in one day to prove something? Nope. It just felt good. As simple as that :-)

Tonight I had Teriyaki takeout from a small restaurant in Ocean Shores. Then I took what felt like an incredibly long hot shower – and got a good shave in afterwards. No soreness. No fatigue. Just feeling good tonight.


I like this kind of road!

Stories: The “tortoise and the hair” (or maybe the “crazy bicyclist vs the Germans”). Played hopscotch today along the route with a bunch of Germans tourists on BMW motorcycles. I first saw them in Forks refueling – all the way to the turnoff of 101 for myself. We passed each other back and forth all day long. They eventually ended up stopping after passing me before one big final hill that I had to ride today -- they all stood at the top cheering me on and clapping as I blasted on by. Thanks for the inspiration!! (I wish I had one of my motorcycles on these roads today too!)

Stories: I’m in the IGA grocery store in Forks and a child comes up to me and asks me "what superhero are you?" I’m thinking -- Huh???? Then it dawns on me -- black cycling leggings, wild colored jersey and cycling shorts -- I definitely wasn't dressed like anyone else in the store. Once I realized he was talking to me – he was pulling on my jersey a bit. I just told the kid that I was Captain Klein -- and I'm nothing more than an adult acting as a Boy Scout in my intentions. Seemed to make his mom happy when he asked her if his brother would be the same thing when he got older since he was also a Boy Scout. His mom just smiled and told her son as long as he had fun and laughs and adventure in life – there was nothing wrong with that at all...

Goodnight!

Mark

ps: A question I have for everyone: Where is all the other touring bicyclist?? I haven't seen one yet and no park rangers have seen anyone for quite a few days. What's up with that???

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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?