My latest adventure down the west coast is now over. Posts are listed by date on the right. In a departure from previous years, I am not asking for donations. Instead, I will be making a sizable donation on behalf of my father-in-law, father, and all the wonderful people who have supported me over the years.

My rides will continue to make a difference in the lives of families fighting lung disease and to increase awareness about the importance of lung health. Follow along … Together; we are improving life, one breath at a time.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Ride The West - Day 8 - Eureka, CA

After a relaxing rest day, it was time for more miles, more climbing, more pictures, and more memories.  The sun was shining as we left Crescent City although it was tad nippy (only 50 degrees).  The weather warmed nicely to the low 70's and remained spectacular all day.  A few miles from town, the climbing started as we entered the Redwood National Forest.  The trees today were huge, but tomorrow they get bigger as we go through the Avenue of the Giants.  The first climb was mighty steep averaging a solid 8% with several spots in the double digits. 1,300 feet later it was time for a nice descent.

Great Ocean Views After the Descent
Paul Bunyan and Babe made an appearance at the Trees of Mystery (typical tourist stuff).  It was a good spot for many of us to collect before heading to the first SAG and second climb.  I rode with Barb, John, and Gary into the first SAG in Klamath. After that it was time to climb again.  We entered the Newton Drury Scenic Parkway and climbed to over 900 feet.  It was not quite as steep, but a bit slippery as moss lined some sides of the road.  That moss caused my rear tire to go out from under me just before the summit.  Kind of like slipping in the sand ... I did end up on my butt, but no damage or injuries at such a low speed and controlled fall.

Paul is Almost as Big as the Trees ... and a Lot Bigger Than ABB Riders
Riding Along the Newton Drury Scenic Parkway
One of the Larger Redwoods Dwarfs Me
Originally Named "The Big Tree" ... Over 300 feet high and almost 22 feet in diameter
We Saw Some Elk Grazing in a Field
At around the midway point (40 miles), Gary and I stopped for a quick and light lunch in Orick.  Turkey and cheese on crackers with a nice non-fat chocolate milk.  I can't down a big meal during a long ride ... this hit the spot.  Orick had a lot of redwood carving shops.  None seemed to go with the Victorian decor of our new house. The route turned to 200-300 foot "rollers" (if you can call them that) and opened up some nice views of the ocean. I was able to ride the last 6 miles into the SAG (in Trinidad) with Toronto Mark.

My Karen Would be Right at Home with a Salmon and Bear (Memories of Her Alaska Trip)
I headed out from the SAG with Jeff, Joe, and Leo.  The next three miles along Scenic Drive were breath taking.  Jeff commented it had the highest PPM (Pictures Per Mile) we had seen on the trip so far.  The road itself had seen better days and was washed out last year.  It had been repaired, but there were lots of ruts, gravel, and other obstacles to avoid.

The Stooges Along Scenic Drive

Picture Opportunities at Every Turn

View from Luffenholtz Park
We meandered along 101 and then got on a nice bike path (Hammond Trail Bike Path) for several miles.  We crossed a bike only bridge and then spent about three miles on a gravel road that really tired me out.  Riding through the town of Arcata, we found a pizza place that Susan would have liked.  The approach to Eureka was long and I pulled back a little and rode the last few miles alone.

Jeff Heading Over the Bike Bridge

Dutchy's Pizza
After 84 miles and 4,600 feet of climbing (see route and map at I made my way into Eureka.  It has a nice old town section and a few neat Victorian homes that would blend in well in my home of Braddock Heights.  Tonight I am on the pull out!  Good BBQ for dinner and a relaxing night in the room with the stooges.  Tomorrow is another 80 mile day with 50 of them along the Avenue of Giants.  Pig and his friends would have to climb mighty long to reach the top of those.

Old Victorian in Eureka - Now The Ingomar Club

Pig and a Young Friend Can Climb Too
Good Night Moon ... Good Night Category 2 Climb ... Good Night Redwoods ... Good Night Stooges ... Good Night Duchess ... Good Night All

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