Monday, July 06, 2009
Day 2_July 6th_Pendleton, OR
Route from The Dalles to Pendleton--click on any of the pix to zoom in.
What a difference a day makes! Today was virtually flat, compared to yesterday, only 3,400' of climbing, compared to yesterday's 8,300. BUT, the exciting news is that we had a 25-35 tail wind! The downside was about 50 of our 133 miles were on I-84. Out west riding on the interstate is not an insane suicidal choice as it would be in the eastern half of the country. Shoulders are full-lane in width and traffic is manageable. The biggest risk is flats from the little surgical wires used to hold the retreads on truck tires. Then when they delaminate they leave these little wire remnants to puncture your tires. No flats for me today, but others weren't so lucky.
You can pretty much tell where you are in the country by the road kill, what trucks are hauling, and what grows in the fields. Road kill today was deer; trucks were hauling felled trees and potatoes; and mint fields were as vast as corn and soy bean fields in the midwest. The fragrance of mint has it all over corn and soy beans, for sure.
The last 30 miles were spectacular--Old Pendleton Road. Bluffs and plains as far as you could possibly see. Point and shoot cameras simply can't capture the splendor.
I rode with Jonathan and Melissa from Australia, this afternoon on that Old Pendleton Road. We had some good laughs about our differences in how we use the English language: lifts vs elevators, cutlery vs silverware, but perfiderole vs ice cream/cream puff "took the cake".