For the first half of our day, we took back roads from the Tualatin Valley and then up and over the ridge separating us from the Columbia River. This was another cloudy day; though we had a few sprinkles at lunch we did not have rain. But it was constantly threatening. The skies were dark and grey, and in the deep woods of the climb it was eerie - threatening almost.
|Dark, damp, cold - who wants to live in these woods?|
|Is your next Christmas tree out here?|
This was a steep road going up, and a crazy steep road going down! We lost about 1400 feet in less than three miles. I am glad we did not climb up that side. (Mark Friis, Roger says you need to put this on your bucket list: Rocky Point Road up from Hwy 30 near Scappoose. The descent back to Forest Grove would be spectacular!)
|Can you see the 18-wheeler just to the left of the trusses? This bridge was HUGE!|
|Starting up the bridge|
|Narrow bike lane|
As we approached the bridge, I had that feeling you get when you are going up the first climb of a roller coaster. Clack-clack-clack-clack . . . what was I thinking? That's the way it seemed. How are we going to get over that?
First thing, there was not much of a lane for us. And, it was littered with debris from the logging trucks that use the bridge. Yuck. Roger managed to hold a line and we just went over the crap best we could. A good stiff wind was blowing, which made things interesting. AND the ascent was about 7 to 8% for most of the way up! Did I mention that the bridge wiggled when the trucks lumbered past? Plus there was a metal facing that vibrated and shook each time one went by. Yikes. I was so relieved to get off this bridge.
Then it was just a few more miles to "someplace to stay" - that's really all you could say about it. Castle Rock itself is sort of a cute little town, but the motels are on the Interstate, so that's where we are now. Nothing too special about that! But we are now into our third state, and looking forward to seeing friends in Seattle and Friday Harbor in a few days.
The day's report: Forest Grove to Castle Rock, 71.5 miles/1632 to date