Day 45: Corvallis to Dallas OR. 30 miles with a few hundred feet of climbing
An even shorter day today as I reached the real destination of my trip. There will be one more ride report for this tour: Dallas to Portland OR, then I'll be flying to Nashville TN and riding back from there to Asheville NC. I've already written up the route I plan to use for that trip - I used it in the other direction last summer - so I won't be doing ride reports. In the mean time, I am visiting with the folks in Dallas who took care of me in '96 and visiting with a nephew in Portland A nice ending to a good tour.
I started the morning by writing yesterdays report, posting it, and then working on my bike. I found the thorn that caused yesterdays slow leak in my front tire, patched the tube, and decided to keep the tire for use a spare tire or on my commuter bike. I put my remaining new tube and my new spare Conti TT on the wheel. It is heavier and less responsive, but STURDY. I also did some other repair/adjustment and took advantage of the 11 A.M. checkout time.
I rode around Corvallis a bit, had an early lunch at a Subway, and rode north through Corvallis on OR 99W. It is a pleasant college town that almost feels like it is out on the plains, and it has lots of bicyclists.
Leaving town I was amused by the bike path right next to the great shoulder on OR 99W. The bike path stopped in a little while, but the shoulder continued.
Looking north from Corvallis, you see a ridge, and riding north actually involves riding up some gentle hills. It is pretty country, and, other than the usual headwind, it was nice riding.
Before I got to Monmouth, I met some neat tourists coming the other way on a Counterpoint tandem. Skip and Kelly had their daughter Tam and their dog Penny in the trailer. They have done lots of touring with the dog, and now they are going to head down the California coast with dog and two year old child in tow. Brave folks!
I stopped in Monmouth for a large milkshake and a hotdog. I wanted to go to the same restaurant, which had a 50's theme, that I ate lunch at in '96, but it was now a Chinese Restaurant and closed. I also wanted to ride the bike path where I crashed and broke my collarbone, and I was able to do that, but they had largely filled in the ditch between the path and the road so I couldn't find the place where I crashed. Oh well, nostalgia has it limits! I switched over to a nice back road route for the rest of my ride into Dallas and managed, by blind luck, to ride directly to the hospital where I first arrived, by ambulance, in '96.
I find it amazing that folks want a bike path when roads like those back roads are less than half a mile away!