Willapa Bay to Port Orford

Well folks its been a while since my last confession,oops, sorry, my last blog ! Funny how time flies when your having the best time of your life πŸ˜‰
Willapa Bay campsite was a KOA campsite and as I said in my last post we rented a cabin and ate oysters, we also got talking to some fellow cyclists around the campfire, firstly there was Eric who’s riding a recumbent bike, good guy, intelligent and interesting but keeps to himself mainly.
We’ve caught up with him since then and he’s always friendly, second was Kevin and his wife Stephanie oh and there kids, four year old Oliver who rides on a trailer behind dad and 18 month old Emmet who rides on a by seat behind mum, absolutely lovely people, travelling from Vancouver to San Francisco, we met them again at Beverly and rode with them until Pacific Bay when we unfortunately had to say good-bye, they only travel about thirty miles a day as there trying to give the kids a holiday to πŸ˜‰
The route from Willapa Bay takes you over the Astoria Bridge and halfway across your into Oregon and the scenery seems to change dramatically !
Astoria gave us the opportunity to get to a bike shop ” Bikes and Beyond ” cheers guys, sorted on inner tubes and a dinosaur horn for Naomi’s bike, please don’t ask !!
Lunch next door at the bistro was fabulous and we saved some cake and salad for the camp meal.
Camped at another KOA campsite and got a spot between to RV’s, made me laugh, them and us picture !! Anyhow a bloke called Tim stepped out of an RV with a couple of beers for us, some people make you feel so humble, cheers Tim πŸ˜‰
The site also had a hot tub so we treated ourselves, lovely to be so warm, the best bit though was all you can eat pancakes for breakfast included in the price, I was a happy man πŸ˜‰
Next morning saw us set of for Cannon Beach, heavy rain made slow going but we still managed 25 miles, we got to Cannon Beach and decided we liked it enough to stay the night, booked into a motel called The Waves, good host let us put the bikes in the garage, a bit of bike maintenance, hot shower, laundry and out for food and ale. Next morning saw us take a ride out to Ecola State Park, fantastic views made the 2 mile uphill ride worth it. Great ride back down to collect our gear before heading out towards Nehalem, this proved to be one of our best days yet !!
On our way out of Cannon Beach we caught up with a bloke called Tom, a native from Oakland California who’s cycling from Portland to Los Angeles although he works in San Francisco.
We’ve been together ever since and get on great πŸ˜‰ During the ride to Nehalem we passed him then we’d stop and he’d pass us etc, the weather was good and the scenery fantastic, all rugged cliffs and foaming water, we all ended up at the same camp ground at Nehalem where we also found a couple who we’d met at Cannon Beach, Pat and his wife and a young girl called Emily. We’d seen her quite a few times during the last couple of days but had never got a chance to talk to her until now, she was on her last of 11 days cycling on her own and was making ready to leave for home in the morning.
We all decided to go to the beach to see the sunset, what a fantastic moment, just sat on a warm beach watching the sun sink into the Pacific Ocean, it’s moments like this that make it all worth the effort.

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Sunset at Nehalem

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Top picture Emily, bottom picture Tom at Nehalem Beach.
Next morning Naomi and I set off for Cape Lookout, Tom was still doing his own thing but we had arranged to meet at the camp ground, the weather was still good and the terrain moderate although the scenery was not as good as the last couple of days we were looking forward to the Tillamook Cheese Factory !!
Tillamook in these parts is famous not only for cheese but also for ice-cream, trust me we sampled both, it took Naomi 40 mins to eat her ice-cream;-) Good fun and while the we bumped into a mother and daughter who were on a short cycling trip Lucy the mum and her daughter Whitney, we met hem again at the campsite and again the following day while yet again eating ice-cream, Lucy was good enough to give us there phone No and address in San Francisco incase we need help when we get there, humbled yet again, thanks to the Goodell family πŸ˜‰
Arriving at the Cape Lookout State Park campsite we noticed a yellow flag amongst the bushes and new instantly that our friends Kevin, Stephanie, Oliver and Emmet were there as was Tom, all friends together. Late arriving at camp were a couple called Paul and Jean from Portland, now friends on Facebook they are both keen cyclists and have cycled the Pacific Coast before, they gave great info on all manner of things especially places to eat, thanks guys πŸ˜‰
The weather was filthy that night but we did manage a walk on the beach first,

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The beach at Cape Lookout !
The morning brought more rain so we all decamped to the picnic gazebo to cook breakfast and dry tents, it may have been wet but moral and camaraderie was at an all time high πŸ˜‰

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Drying out at Cape Lookout !!
The ride out from Cape Lookout to Beverly was to be one of the hardest yet, some monster hills made harder by carrying heavy kit, our bikes and kit weigh more than 50 kilo so uphills are tough !
Tom, Kevin, Stephanie, Naomi all set of together with a coffee stop at Pacific Bay, 15 miles away as our meeting point.

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Top picture far right Coffee Shop at Pacific Bay.
Middle picture, far left Tom, Stephanie in the middle and Kevin with Emmet on the right.
Bottom picture, Oliver, cute or what !!
As I said earlier this is where we said goodbye to this amazing family, it’s there kids holiday as much as there’s so they travel at a slower pace, I wish them all well and hope our paths will cross again someday πŸ˜‰
More gorgeous scenery on the way to Beverly

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Some of the amazing scenery on the way to Beverly.
As I said earlier Paul and Jean recommended places to eat and on the way J’s fish and chips provided us with a fabulous lunch, great recommendation folks, thanks.

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J’s Fish and Chip Shop.
Arriving at Beverly we ran into Paul and Jean and also met Eric on his recumbent again, later a couple of guys we’d met at Potlatch turned up so it was another good evening, again a few of us took a trip to the beach to watch the sunset, more good memories.

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Sunset at Beverly.

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Jean at Beverly Beach, alas I didn’t get a photo of Paul !
The following morning was a doit day, Tom, Naomi and I all set of for Newport and a launderette, washing in we headed for breakfast at the Newport Cafe, the best breakfast yet !

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A breakfast Burrito and a stack of pancakes plus coffee refills, perfect start to the day !
Back to laundry saw me change an inner tube while Naomi sorted the washing with Tom, soon we were on our way to the Jesse M Honeyman State Park and campsite, on the way we meta guy called Simon, cycling from Alaska to Argentina, a real nomad and a good guy !
More good weather certainly made the day a good one although we weren’t in a rush so we took in a few sights along the way,

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A chainsaw artist not far from Newport.

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Spectacular scenery along the way.

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The inevitable icecream, good cycling food, honest πŸ˜‰

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Whitney and Lucy, mentioned earlier πŸ˜‰
Honeyman campground saw us back with Eric, Simon who we’d met at Newport and a new face, Steve an American and a guy we’d see more of over the ext few days !
It rained early that night so we all trooped of to our tents and listened to the thunder and lightening, the morning arrived and still it rained although not so much, our gear was damp so Tom, Naomi and I hatched a plan, we’d get a motel for the night rather than a camp and try to dry off our kit, also it was Friday night and we needed a good night out.
We said our goodbyes to Simon and wished him well before heading of for Charleston.

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Simon at Honeyman camp, as I said a real nomad πŸ˜‰
Breakfast was proved by the least likely looking place,

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All most cycled straight past this but I was hungry so took a look inside,

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Certainly looked better on the inside, made Tom and Naomi smile !
Halfway through a very good breakfast when are American friend Steve showed up, we explained our decision to find a motel and wished him well.
During the day the weather improved and as we’d stopped at a war memorial to take photos of it and the Coos Bay Bridge in the distance we unpacked our tents and let them dry in the sunny breeze, great idea !!

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The bikes at the War Memorial with the Coos Bay Bridge in the distance.

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More photos of the Coos Bay Bridge.
Unfortunately the bridge seemed to be the only redeeming feature of the town so we headed on to Charleston to find a motel, after a visit to the visitor centre the lovely lady, Martha, pointed us in the direction of Captain John’s Motel, clean, tidy and a reasonable price.

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Captain Johns Motel
Across the street was the bar / restaurant called Millers at the Oyster Cove, several beers and plenty of food saw us retire early to a comfy bed.

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Millers in Charleston.
Now according to the Pacific Coast Highway Cycling Guide Book, now referred to as the Bible, the State Park at Sunset Beach isn’t that great so yet again we headed for a motel in Port Orford.
Steve are American friend also agreed with the bible and was also planning to do the same.
The ride out of Charleston starts hard with a road called the 7 Devils, seven hills each over 120 metres and the biggest topping out at 158 metres, no coast road today, all forest and fields. A strong tailwind blew us to Bandon for our coffee stop. Great Wi Fi saw me upload about 300 photos, the coffee was also good as was the peanut butter cookie.
More tail winds swept us to our favourite cycling food, ice-cream, before cycling the last 14 miles to Port Orford and the Motel. We met up with Steve and all went for dinner before retiring back to the motel to write this blog.
It’s taken awhile to get a good Wi Fi connection with enough time to do it so I hope it was worth the wait πŸ˜‰
Talk to you all soon.
JC

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About John Chevis

I'm a forty something single guy who spent far to long depressed, but luckily for me I found an answer in the form of exercise !! I started running and cycling on a regular basis and now two and a half years later I'm cycling the world !!
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3 Responses to Willapa Bay to Port Orford

  1. Ross Irwing says:

    Fantastic reading , can’t wait till the next one

  2. Graham says:

    Hi John, love all the stories and wish you well! What am I doing here when theres a world to discover, cant wait to see where I’m heading in this beautiful world. Still have a couple of months to go then to Asia for 3 weeks. Next year will be my turning point what do I do? Anyway keep on cycling and enjoying all that life brings. Take Care Graham

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