Pacific Coast Sierra Cascades Bike Trip Day 18 – Level, Down, Up

Just before I turned in, two bikers arrived. They’re doing a short tour. The loud gang in a nearby campsite would have kept me up if not for my ear plugs. I hit the road at 6:30 am with a short, stiff climb out of the Little River valley. For the next 34 miles, riding consisted of level, down, up. Meaning riding on more or less level pavement for a few miles, then a short and often steep descent to a stream, then a short, stiff climb. Repeated many times. In Manchester, I got a pint of chocolate milk in case the cafe in Point Arena was closed. Happily, I scored a mammoth Denver omelet in Point Arena. On the way, I nearly collided with two vultures eating beside the road. Just before I sped toward them, they took off missing me by a few feet. Past Point Arena, riding changed to almost continuous rolling terrain with short, gradual ups and downs for 34 miles. I ate lunch at the Gualala Market among with a quart of chocolate milk. Past Stewart’s Point, the steeper ups and downs returned for 13 miles. I got a hiker-biker site at Stillwater Cove Regional Park for $5, shower $2. Today’s riding proved highly scenic (see photo) with sea stacks and kelp beds near shore. I rode past lots of cattle pastures on fairly level plateaus next to the coast. The air’s still cool even though the sun shone nearly all day. Not much traffic until after lunch. 71 miles today.

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