Seattle

San Diego – Newport: 87 mi
Newport – Malibu: 90 mi
Malibu – Santa Barbara: 70 mi
Santa Barbara – San Luis Obispo: 108 mi
San Luis Obispo – Gorda: 70 mi
Gorda – Carmel: 68 mi
Carmel – Davenport: 60 mi
Davenport – San Francisco: 68 mi
San Francisco – Bodega Bay: 70 mi
Bodega Bay – Manchester Beach: 67 mi
Manchester Beach – Leggett: 82 mi
Leggett – Eureka: 97 mi
Eureka – Crescent City: 86 mi
Crescent City – Humbug State Park: 76 mi
Humbug State Park – Coo’s Bay: 65 mi
Coo’s Bay – Waldport: 75 mi
Waldport – Tillamook (Garibaldi): 87 mi
Tillamook (Garibaldi) – Astoria: 65 mi
Astoria – Kelso: 55 mi
Kelso – Olympia: 77 mi
Olympia – Seattle!!!: 64 mi

1587 MILES

We FINALLY made it to Seattle on the 25th!!! We were quite tired the last few days but we managed to gather our strength and finish what we had originally set out to do. From Astoria we changed our plans and made our way inland to Kelso, up to Olympia and finally to Tacoma (Defiance Point) across Vashon Island and to Seattle.

Our conclusion of the last days of riding are:
– Warm weather makes a difference! Having the sun out while riding makes everything more enjoyable. Especially when accompanied by the amazing scenery along the Northern Oregon Coastline. During the last few days of our trip the weather cooperated quite well, we had a little fog in the morning but full sun later on in the day.
– Our amazing idea of surviving on bagels and cream cheese was not so amazing. For the remainder of my time in the US I think I will refrain from eating bagels + cream cheese, McDonald’s, Cliff Bars and Fruit Punch Gatorade. Also not encouraged, leftover ribs for breakfast with potato salad before a ride.
– Thinking while crossing the Colombia River bridge, “This would be a terrible place to pop a tire.” increases the probability of popping a tire tenfold. At least, after popping and crossing the bridge with a flat we were able to put to good use our tire changing supplies that we carried over 1500 miles and only had used once.
– Not being able to sleep while in a KOA Kabin on plastic covered mattresses requires ear plugs, especially when more than one of the cabin’s occupants cannot sleep. The sound of tossing and turning the whole night will keep you awake.
– Writing a blog on an iPhone versus a full computer/keyboard is very different. I wish we had brought at least a keyboard with us.

As for now, we will continue resting and recuperating strength lost along the way at my grandparent’s home on Bainbridge Island. We are so happy to not have to change sleeping locations daily and eat home cooked meals. We were even able to squeeze in a movie and go out for drinks in Seattle (which was an adventure in its own).

Once I return to San Diego, I will be sure to write a detailed account of our travels including the good, the bad and everything in between.

Thank you to everyone for following us along our way. The support of our family and friends gave us the strength and motivation to finish when we were exhausted. And thank you to all who have been so generous and have made donations to team fundraiser with LIVESTRONG®. 

Advertisements

Tired in Tillamook

Visit to the drive through Redwood tree in Leggett without a car to drive through it: $5
20 cliff bars of various flavors: $30
1 bottle of sunscreen: $5
2 nights at the motel 6: $150
3 stops at Starbucks: a lot
Getting closer every day and enjoying the ride. Priceless.

Well everyone, only 3 more days of riding to go. We are in Garibaldi, Oregon now. Tomorrow Astoria, then Centralia, and Wednesday to Seattle. So close!!! But so tired.

During the last few days our fast pace has caught up with us, or at least with me. I am exhausted, but VERY excited to arrive in Seattle.

We experienced some bad weather, aka terenchal downpour, while we were camping after Leggett and decided to send our semi-incomplete camping material home and splurge for a few motels. After a few nights of “huddling for warmth” with one sleeping bag and the fire queen struggling to make fires with damp wood/paper/everything flammable, we thought motels would be our best option of not freezing or getting wet during the final leg.

Today we also got our first picture of us together taken. The picture speaks for itself…

20120722-163916.jpg

We also continue to learn new things on our trip:
– Logging trucks are BIG. And imagining what would happen if a log or two came lose isn’t easy on the nerves while they ride by you and your bike.
– Refrain from eating Dairy Queen after eating Domino’s pizza, even if you’re trying to make the pizza go down smoother.
– A budget of $25 a day for two is not enough if you’re riding more than 60 miles a day.
– In Safeway, bathrooms are always located in the back on the right.
– The Central and North Oregon Coast is beautiful. We’re not sure if the South Coast is too because all day, every day the only thing visible was fog.

Our next update will probably be once we arrive to Seattle. Thanks for following and stay tuned to our twitter!

20120722-170308.jpg

20120722-170316.jpg

20120722-170332.jpg

20120722-170339.jpg

20120722-170358.jpg

20120722-170521.jpg

20120722-170541.jpg

20120722-170644.jpg

20120722-170700.jpg

Still Alive!

San Diego – Newport: 87 mi
Newport – Malibu: 90 mi
Malibu – Santa Barbara: 70 mi
Santa Barbara – San Luis Obispo: 108 mi
San Luis Obispo – Gorda: 70 mi
Gorda – Carmel: 68 mi
Carmel – Davenport: 60 mi
Davenport – San Francisco: 68 mi
San Francisco – Bodega Bay: 70 mi
Bodega Bay – Manchester Beach: 67 mi
Manchester Beach – Leggett: 82 mi
Total Mileage???
840 miles!

After a few more days on our bikes I think that it is official, we have learned everything NOT to do on a bike trip.
1. Do not ride from south to north unless you love having wind in your face the entire day. We knew before beginning our trip that the coastal winds blow from northwest to southeast, aka directly in the opposite direction that we are traveling, but we thought “What the heck? We’ll just be stronger by the time we make it to Seattle.” Although true, we have at least tripled the amount of suffering we would have experienced doing the trip in the other direction. Our bodies hurt.
2. Do not attempt to “share” one sleeping bag if you want to be warm at night. Although the idea sounds ok the actual practice it is a complete fail.
3. Don’t wait to “eat when you get there” if you are riding more than a total of 60 miles. Most likely you will arrive at your final destination barely able to stand. One perk of your almost catatonic state is that people will be very willing to help you find the nearest restaurant, and after, the location of lodging arrangements. Also not advisable, is eating a full meal less than 1/3 of the way through the daily ride. The first problem is that you will probably still be pretty full from breakfast and getting on your bike with a ton of food in your stomach is probably not the most efficient physical state to be riding in. Secondly, in our case of moving from one big-ish city to another, typically the smaller towns along the way have very little choices of where to eat, and therefore your probability of food poisoning goes way up. Our experience has lead us to believe that if chicken comes out of a plastic bag you should just say no.
4. If you are going to replace your cleats before you do a long trip, change them about 6 weeks in advance and take ’em for a spin. You’ll probably be able to escape a few minor injuries due to placement, which in our case range from Achilles tendon problems to knee issues. Also wearing in your cleats before riding physically exhausted would most likely prevent injuries from stiff cleats impossible to un-latch like those seen in the following photo.
20120715-211756.jpg

To say the least, we are learning quite a bit and turning our bodies into lean, mean, biking machines. We have good days and bad days, hard days and easy days, and fun days and not so fun days, but all in all the trip so far has been very enjoyable and rewarding emotionally (maybe not so physically..).

For now, we are focusing on the 760 miles that separate us and Seattle. 9 DAYS of riding left. We’re more than half way already and making tons of progress every day.

Thanks for following. More updates hopefully once we reach Crescent city!

20120715-205820.jpg

20120715-205840.jpg

20120715-205917.jpg

20120715-205938.jpg

20120715-210003.jpg

20120715-210033.jpg

20120715-210053.jpg

San Francisco!

Yesterday we arrived in San Francisco after a long two days along the rural and hilly California coast.

We were very tired after finishing the route south of SF. Carmel – Davenport – San Francisco. But after a good night’s sleep, today we were able to tour San Francisco on the “hop-on, hop-off” guided bus tour, allowing our legs to rest a little, skipping the hilly streets. It was the perfect way to get some tourism in while we are resting up for the 2nd part of our trip.

Unfortunately, I am covered in poison oak… So walking around town I feel, and look, like an itchy Quasimodo. But, not to worry, I am still as motivated as before to finish the trip. I’m not going to let a case of poison oak stop me from pedaling my way to Seattle. In any case, if anyone has any ideas on how to make my patches of poison oak clear up faster I am open to suggestions.

Also, we have received a bunch of donations these last few days and I would like to thank those of you who have been so generous for your contributions to our LIVESTRONG fundraiser! It helps keep us motivated on hard days knowing that we have so much support.

Tomorrow we will complete our rest and on Friday we will continue on to Bodega Bay. The weather has been great here in SF and hopefully it will follow us as we make our way towards Oregon.

For brief and more constant updates on our daily activities don’t forget to look at our twitter page. You don’t have to be a twitter subscriber to view our updates. The link to our page is www.twitter.com/bikewestcoast or you can put @bikewestcoast in a google search and our page will show up.

20120711-184134.jpg

20120711-184156.jpg

20120711-184225.jpg

20120711-184241.jpg

20120711-184300.jpg

20120711-184324.jpg

20120711-184340.jpg

SLO – Gorda – Carmel

SLO – Gorda 70 miles
Gorda – Carmel 68 miles

In the last two days I have learned a lot.
– For the second time in my life I used a CO2 cartridge to pump up a tire, and it was awesome. No more struggling/fighting with a hand pump for me.
– Climbing mountains with a backpack is not fun. Even if you do have a killer backpack. I was fortunate enough to experience the wonderful feeling of a lower back cramp several times.
– I’ve decided that in my next life I would like to be reincarnated as a California cow… Specifically one of those we saw on our ride. Living by the beach and rolling hills along the coast with amazing views and nice weather. Now I fully understand “Great cheese come from happy cows. Happy cows come from California.” Cheeze-its were right.
– Check for poison oak before setting up your tent instead of casually figuring out that you were surrounded the entire night, and may have gone to the bathroom “in” it, as you leave the campsite in the morning.
– Hungry Sarah is not a nice Sarah.
– An aerodynamic road bike is only aerodynamic if wind comes from the front of the bike.

On Saturday we left San Luis Obispo and began what is known to be the most beautiful section of the ride up the California coast. I can now officially confirm the rumors first hand, it is indeed amazing. It is the perfect mix between mountain and sea (+cows).

We saw elephant seals, zebras, whales, and even dead snakes. And from our campsite last night we heard sea lions barking… the entire night.

Today was a hard day for both of us. We woke up already cold, road through thick fog on hills where we sweat as we climbed and shivered as we descended, suffered through the huge/hungry climb to Big Sur, and just as we thought we were finished with the “hard” leg of the day, we were smacked in the face by a very strong headwind. 30 miles from Big Sur to Carmel took us 4 hours. To say the least, we are two exhausted girls.

After two days and two mountains without a shower or bed we are now in Carmel at a hotel getting a much needed rest and icing our sore bodies.

Tomorrow and the next day will be smooth sailing to San Francisco (fingers crossed) where we will stop for two whole days, three nights, before continuing riding.

Depending on cell coverage tomorrow another update will be posted.

Thank you to our followers! Today I was thinking of you as we struggled through a tough ride. Cross your fingers for no head wind tomorrow while we ride.

20120708-195433.jpg

20120708-195529.jpg

20120708-195605.jpg

20120708-195650.jpg

20120708-195455.jpg

San Luis Obispo. Day 5

Pismo Beach

Today we road our bikes from Santa Barbara to San Luis Obispo.

It was by far our longest day coming in at almost 110 miles (180km).

After going over the costal mountains coming out of Santa Barbara we stopped at Starbucks in Santa Maria had a coffee and ate our “go-to” food of the trip, a bagel with cream cheese. Then, we road our bikes along the interior agricultural area of Santa Maria where there were amazing views but a lot of wind and 18 wheeler trucks. It was our first real day with wind, and the combination of wind with the trucks made keeping our bikes steady near to impossible. With every passing truck our bikes would wiggle about 5ft from side to side. But, we survived! And made it to Pismo Beach, where, like proper Spaniards, we took our “siesta” before getting back on our bikes to continue to San Luis Obispo.

Pismo Beach

We arrived in San Luis Obispo tired and a little burnt on the backs of our legs from falling asleep face down on the beach.

After another “siesta” we even made it to a bike shop to stock up on a few necessities for the next few days’ rides. Some new tubes and a few CO2 cartridges, plus some sports bars to eat along the way.

We also were treated to an amazing sushi dinner made by Jason’s roommates Ian and Audrey! We’re so thankful to everyone that is helping us along the way during our trip, without their help our trip would be impossible. Thanks again to the Pepin Family, Kate and Ashley, and Jason and his roommates for being so kind to us.

Sushi  Jason's House

I’d also like to thank those of you who have made donations! We have received quite a few emails from LIVESTRONG® with updates on our fundraiser balance. We really appreciate everyone’s generous donations!

Tomorrow we will ride 70 miles, an “easy day” of our scheduled rides. It should be beautiful along the Central Coast around the Big Sur area. We will be sure to keep adding photos and updates on our twitter (@bikewestcoast) along the way.

First Rest Day. Santa Barbara.

Day 1 (San Diego to Newport): 87 miles

Day 2 (Newport to Malibu): 90 miles

Day 3 (Malibu to Santa Barbara) : 70 miles

Total: Almost 250 miles

Today is a rest day in Santa Barbara. Our legs and bottoms are sore, but we’re happy that we have 3 solid days down. We have made a dent in the total amount of miles that we have ahead of us. And every day we are getting more used to riding bike all day long.

Our second day from Newport Beach to Malibu was a challenging day due to the amount of traffic in the area. Our route took us from Newport Beach to Huntington Beach to Long Beach then through Torrance and back to the coast again through Redondo Beach, Hermosa Beach, Manhattan Beach, Venice Beach and Santa Monica and up the Pacific Coast Highway to Malibu. When we arrived at Leo Carrillo State Beach we were two very tired girls. But, we went for a walk to the beach and even got a little wet. We were exhausted by the time we went to bed.

We woke up at 5am yesterday for the trip from Malibu to Santa Barbara. The ride was long, but not as long as the previous two days. Malibu, to Point Mugu, through Oxnard and up the coast passing through Carpinteria to Santa Barbara. The weather was overcast which was good for us in some ways, but I was a little cold after stopping for breakfast in Oxnard. Thank god we have our jackets with us. They have been useful from the beginning and I am sure that they will be 100% necessary once we reach the northern part of our route.

We were even able to celebrate the 4th of July yesterday with my sister in Santa Barbara. It was Cate’s first 4th of July in the States and the firework show in Santa Barbara was great!

We’ve also managed to raise another hundred dollars for LIVESTRONG®. But we still need a lot of help to make it to our goal of $2000. For donations, don’t forget that our fundraising page with LIVESTRONG® can be found by clicking on the following link. (http://laf.livestrong.org/goto/westcoastgirls). More information is also available on the LIVESTRONG® tab above.

To see new photos our travels I have just uploaded new pictures to our flickr (http://www.flickr.com/photos/westcoastgirls/).

Thanks to everyone for following. Tomorrow we will post an update about our ride from Santa Barbara to San Luis Obispo!

http://youtu.be/MatmHrCHU9w

http://youtu.be/noWHqU4WARQ