PCT 2007 Day 18
Stage 18 / 4-12-07
Anchor Bay – Bodega Bay
55.05 miles; 1013.28 total miles; 12.1 mph avg.; 4:31 hours
Sunny, 60’s w/ wind
It was supposed to rain around 4 PM until 6; but it actually rained off and on most of the night. It was clear when I got up at 7. I was told it would be sunny all day and it was. I even had a tailwind that PUSHED me up the hills. It was amazing. My biggest climb of the day should have been challenging but with the tailwind it was a snap. That’s not to say I didn’t have trouble with the wind. At times I got pounded when I was switching back at valleys like the ones I spoke of yesterday.
The whole stage was on Rt. 1. It made navigation a snap. The road was narrow for most of the day; but I’ve been warned that is how Rt. 1 is.
The coast was great today. I had so many views of the rocks and sea stacks. I think 80% of today took place out in the open. The route pretty much went through grassland along the shore. The surf is much larger than in Oregon.
When I got to Jenner I was supposed to get a package from Sam but the postman said he didn’t have one for me. I left a note explaining where to forward it to then went next door to the store to have lunch. While eating lunch, he came over and handed me my package. It was right in front of him and he missed it. He actually went looking in another place for it originally. I was happy to have the package.
While I was in the PO, which was a mobile trailer, the post master told me about the angry Elephant Seal they have. I saw a picture outside warning people about him. Then while inside I saw a picture of a kayak riddled with holes. I thought somebody shot someone’s boat up. It turns out the old elephant seal attacked the kayaker. Thirdly, there was a picture of said elephant seal on the front page of the paper with a seal in its mouth. Turns out he doesn’t like anyone and has scared the 800 nesting seals away from Jenner.
When I got to Bodega, I went past the CG entrance to find out where to buy food. I had to go another half mile with two hills to a store. I got my dinner and snacks and headed back north. When I got to the CG, I was told there was someone else in the hiker/biker section. A first ever! That’s where the excitement stops. Turns out someone dropped this guy and his dog off over a week ago. He was supposed to leave by noon. I asked the camp host and she said the ranger was taking care of it. I waited another half hour and nothing was happening. I’m sure the guy was harmless but I didn’t want chance it. I went back to the gate and spoke to the woman there. She told me to just pick any spot. So I did and it looked great. I unhitched my trailer to leave it so others would know the spot was taken. This was the first time I had ridden without the trailer the whole trip. It was super weird! I over corrected every movement I made.
When I got back from switching my site with the front gate, I set up my tent to only have it be blown down by the wind, three times. Between the soft sand and the high wind, my perfect site just flopped. I packed up all my gear in a huff and found a less windy spot. Once again, I rode up to the gate to let them know. I do mean up, the sites were downhill from the gate. Back at the site I noticed it wasn’t as flat as I thought and the wind was now just as bad as the last site. At this point I needed someone to talk to. I attempted to call my folks 4 times before giving up and riding once again to the gate. I figured being uphill would help. Nothing, no signal! So now I just wanted a room. No campsite was going to do anymore.
When I got my dad (finally), he told me all the places in town were over $200 a night. I attempted to inquire at the RV park I was next to at the time but they were gone for the night. I tried my dad once more and he had found one place with rooms at $65. Of course it was in town where I had already been. Off I went. I got there as another guy was leaving. The only room they had had just been painted shortly ago. The woman at the desk gave me the key and I checked it out. I opened both windows and gave it a minute or two. It wasn’t so bad. I took the room then went for Italian next door. I even did laundry while I ate. My clothes didn’t dry all the way so I have the heat on to dry them fully. I feel bad since I also have the windows open for the paint smell.
It’s been a long day due to the whole campground debacle. Issues like it shouldn’t bum me out but after a long day in the saddle I just want to enjoy camp. Tonight that wasn’t going to happen. So as I have learned, I must make it happen.
Small things can make or break your day but the honest truth is I’m tired and that makes even the little bumps big ones.
Tomorrow is a new day and I hope to make the best of it. Off to bed for me.
Scatman 2011- This was an enjoyable day of riding despite the rain in the early part. While at the cafe in Elk I sat next to the fire and warmed up. Duncan’s Cove, Gleason Beach and Carmet Beach were all spectacular. I never got tired of looking at the ocean.
This day wasn’t as bad as the one in Eureka but close. As I mentioned the small bumps seemed bigger than they were. It was quite hard to spend almost 90% of my day alone with no one to talk to. I spoke to my dad the most and he was 3000 miles away. I had no one but myself to keep my spirits up or to find the good in the bad. The bad tough days were the minority but the stood out.
Get out there!