Coast to Coast for the FFB: THE ONLINE JOURNAL

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Thursday, August 04, 2005

Day 82: Dayville, OR to Ochoco Divide Campground, OR (57 miles, 4023 total)

We've reached another landmark of this trip and rolled over 4,000 miles.

Neither AK nor I slept well last night. Perhaps it was the random alarm clock that went off loudly at 3:45 AM that caused the lack of sleep. But it could have also been the voices I could have sworn I kept hearing in the church in the night. That combined with a knocking sound emitting from the floor whenever anyone moved sorted of freaked me out all night. AK told me the voices I heard was her telling me to shut-up because I was snoring up a storm. Maybe I did sleep well after all.

Today was a tough climbing day with two big passes back to back. Rebus declared that today was the most he has ever climbed in one day. I don't doubt it; in one day we climbed about 5,000 feet in only 57 miles. AK and I are very excited as we only have one more mountain pass left in the entire trip. It will be a tough one, but after it we will have a huge, long downhill.

We woke up around 5:30AM and started the usual pack up. The night before, I made a quick trip to the store for some Honey Nut Cheerios and some milk for breakfast. It has seemed like ages since AK and I have had cold cereal, so we were pretty excited about it. It's really nice to have access to a fridge.

Speaking of which, the Presbyterian Church in Dayville is a cool place to stay. They offer cyclists carpet to sleep on, showers, a washer and dryer, a full kitchen and internet access. It was way cool. Plus they have put litte plaques on many of their applicances that read "Purchased with Cyclist Donations." We have been giving donations to all the churches we have stayed in since the first one, so it is really nice to see the impact our donations can have.

Anywho, after some cereal we rolled out of town by 7:30. A few miles later we rolled into Picture Gorge which was beautiful. We got to ride right through it and past the famous John Day Fossil Beds National Monument. It was too early to stop in for a visit, but we heard it is really cool.

About 10 miles later we stumbled upon another "Feed Local Predators" program. Outside this home was what looked like 30 (but could be many more) young cats and kittens. I think they were hungry as several came to investigate us when we stopped to look. A woman and a child emerged from the house and we spoke with them for a bit. I asked the woman how many cats she had and she replied, "I've no idea. The owner of the ranch asked me to get some cats, and now they seem to be multiplying". No kidding! Rebus and I decided that these cats were named either Scraps or Bits.

33 miles from Dayville, we arrived at our first pass of the day, Keyes Creek Pass at 4,357 feet. The climb was rather simple, but we were happy to be at the top. We hoped that seven miles down the backside of the pass we would find a cafe in the town of Mitchell.

When we pulled into Mitchell, we found a grocery store and two closed cafes. The owner of the grocery came out and asked Rebus if he was lost. We were sure we would be having another cold-cuts and crackers lunch, but fortunately the shopkeep told us about a cafe on the edge of town.

We zipped down to the cafe and had a great meal before heading back to the grocery store for items for making dinner. We had heard from the owner of the store that the campground water was bad too, so we bought two gallons of water. Some local kids were very impressed with Rebus' bike and asked him to jump it. Rebus wimped out and dissapointed the kids by not catching air on the Lemond.

From Mitchell, we had 16 miles until our next pass and the stopping point for the day. We loaded up all our new food items and headed out. We descended a bit before flattening out and starting our uphill burn. The elevation profile for Ochoco Pass on our maps made it look super tough, so we decided to have set stopping points at various locations.

At the 10 miles-until-the-pass mark, I stopped in front of a home for sale. Rebus read the details of the sale out loud for us to hear. A 1,000 square foot two-bedroom home on 450 acres of land for $350,000.
After a moment a local on a bike stopped by to chat. He was on his way up the hill too (back to his house). He looked a bit like Doc Brown from the movie "Back to the Future," and he fit the part too as he kept talking about his inventions. We asked him about the status of the water at the campground, and he told us he thought it should be fine, good even. He did warn us not to drink stream waters as we could be exposing ourselves to "Beaver Fever". Seriously.

We rolled out and up. The climb remaind chill until about three miles later and it began to steepen. After five miles, we stopped for another breather. While waiting for Rebus and AK, I spied a motorcyclist burning down the hill in the other direction with a fly-swatter flapping in the breeze. I laughed out loud when I picture the guy riding down the road trying to swat flies.

After the rest stop, five miles remained between us and the top of Ochoco Pass (4,720 feet). Up and up we went with a slight downhill before arriving at the top of our second to last pass of the trip.

The Ochoco Divide Campground waited for us about 50 yards from the top of the pass. We picked a campsite and set up camp. We all headed over to clean up in the fridged water from the spigot. In the Dixie Summit Campground, the tainted water was locked in the off position, so here we are pretty sure the water is OK. Rebus was first to drink it.

For dinner we had a meal of pasta, peas, and tuna. It was actually pretty tasty. Rebus made our first campfire for the entire trip and we are happy to have it as the temperature is dropping with the setting sun.

Concluding that it is funny that in some ways we are all destined to be a bit like our parents, Rebus declared that he'd like to be sipping on some whiskey while sitting in front of the fire. Yep, I could picture Bob, Rebus' father, doing the very same thing.



At August 05, 2005 3:15 AM, Anonymous said...

Bob would be chewing on some Serrano peppers-TAB

At August 05, 2005 3:34 PM, Anonymous said...

Humm... I've got nothing on the "Beaver Fever". Everything seems a bit too easy...


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