Portland Day 5
Weed CA to Klamath Falls OR
Distance 74 mi
Duration 6 hours
Saddle time 5 hrs 30 min
Great Day. I did not sleep so well, got up at 6:00 to go across the street to the Hi Lo motel for breakfast. I ordered off the small menu and still got one of those oval plates filled 50-50 with hash browns and a Denver omelette. On the road at 7:30 with an extra layer of clothes because it was 50 degrees outside, Weed is at about 3500’ elevation. Within a half hour I stopped to change out of the long finger gloves and undershirt. I did keep my knee warmers on for the whole ride. Hwy 97 turned out to be just fine in relation to the traffic.
I had a 6 foot shoulder with a rumble strip whenever the road had one lane. I did lose a lot of shoulder when there were two lanes on my side, but there was so little traffic all the cars moved to the left lane as they passed me. A shout out to the Hwy 97 truckers, they were always considerate and moved left when passing me. Now, if you don’t like the idea of semi trucks period, then forget it, you would hate riding Hwy 97. Traffic aside, it was a beautiful ride.
I had Mt Shasta to my right for many miles, and vistas or pine trees all around me. I climbed about 1500 feet to the highest point of my biking part of the trip, and was rewarded with a 4 mile, 6% grade, 7 minute bomb down into butte valley, land of hay (alfalfa?). I’m surprised I was not sneezing, hay was blowing off the trucks and all over the road. The road cut an absolutely straight line through most of the valley.
I don’t know if there was a slight downward tilt to the road grade, or if the sideways, light wind was slightly behind and pushing me, but I flew through the valley averaging 19 mph. Dorris, the town with the big-ass flag, was at the far end of the valley. Some little rollers after that put me into Oregon…OREGON BABY!!!! Made it!
Klamath Falls was still about 15 miles away. The road became like an viaduct with water on both sides. Klamath Falls is known as a bird watchers paradise, big time flyway stopover for migratory birds. There were birds in the water canals (I saw a beaver, too, oh my!). The ducks seemed to universally distrust me, they were constantly taking to flight along side of me or in front of me.
This was a nice diversion, as I my legs were definitely tightening up and I really was getting tired. But Klamath Falls was so close! Thank the Earth I got a tailwind to blow me the rest of the way into town. I have begun riding standing up, pedaling for 30 strokes, then resting my leg on the seat, repeat, repeat, repeat, because my sit bone are taking this ride the hardest.
I pulled into town, found the Amtrak station so I knew where it was for tomorrow, .3 mile farther took my to the Maverick Hotel and OFF MY BIKE. This is the smallest room of all my hotel stays, but the sheets are clean. Hey, $55.00. I think I chose well. The Klamath Basin Brewing company is next door. Steak salad for lunch with a 4 – 4 0z sampler flight.
And I have a massage booked for 4:45. Rockin’ Day. Starting tomorrow, I have a new obsession: Rain forecast for the next 3 days, forget the wind.