Boats, gravel, bridges, and killer attack geese?
Slept much better last night and I attribute some of that to the eye mask and ear plugs I picked up at REI. Unfortunately one of my ear plugs came loose and the day started early with birdsong at 4:15 a.m. I was tempted to just lay around for a few hours, but got up anyway and started getting ready. I figured I could either lounge around now or lounge around after riding.
Breaking down camp went smoothly and just a hair quicker than the day before. Looking forward to developing a solid routine to make things easy. I did have to strap the pair of bibs I wore yesterday to my center bag because it hadn’t dried completely. Must have been a trip for anyone driving up on me. Big red chamois tied down with bright orange Voile straps.
Rolling out my fears from the night before were confirmed. The climb out was awful. Nothing better than spiking your heart rate up over 165 on a 10% climb in the first half mile of the day. Oof.
As I was riding through the entrance area I came up on a family of geese wondering around. Almost a little traffic jam first thing in the morning. I must of got a little too close because one of them started coming at me and hissing up a storm. Chill out son it’s too early in the morning for that kind of attitude.
Similar to yesterday, things started on the cool side. Not quite as cool, but still enough to test your resolve. I’d thought of wearing my puffy jacket to start but decided against it. After a few miles I was glad I went without.
First half of the ride had some beautiful views in the early morning light. Snapped some great pictures all along the way. I did actually turn around to get the shot of the sign that read, “Don’t give up”. Felt kinda poignant. Also spotted a pair of deer cruising through someone’s yard and I would go on to see a total of four on the day including a little baby.
Arrived at the Port Townsend ferry with almost perfect timing. As I rolled up to the booth I pulled over to consult my map to make sure I was on the right track. The guy working the booth tells me, “If you’re wanting the ferry better make up your mind because they’re loading right now and they’ve cancelled the next one.”. Having confirmed it was the right ferry unpaid my $5 and rolled over to the cyclist waiting area while the last of the cars were loaded. Only after the cars were done were cyclists (only me) and walk ons (two people, a couple) allowed on board.
As I rode on I was hyper aware of the surface below me on the lookout for any weird holes or grooves to catch a tire. Once on a deckhand tells me, “You can either leave it here or go up the ramp, but you can’t filter through the cars.”. I park Shadow at the bottom of the stairs and it took me a minute to find the ramp the guy was talking about. There was a 1-2 foot wide metal plate that went up along with a set of stairs. I looked at it and knew there was no way I was rolling Shadow up that. Sorry buddy you have to hang all back of the bus.
Feeling confident that Shadow wasn’t going to go anywhere I went up through the decks to explore and take some pictures. It was a smooth crossing and you’d have a hard time really feeling any rocking motion at all. I did find a vending machine and grabbed some snacks before heading back down to relax with Shadow.
The trip to Port Townsend was pretty quick and it didn’t take long to unload at all. As I started through town I wanted to make another stop for some coffee before continuing on. As luck would have it, immediately after a left turn off the main drag there was Sunrise Coffee right on the corner.
As I pulled in there was a bike rack out front with three bikes sitting there, and one of them was leaving with the owner. I asked him if this was the good coffee joint and he said indeed it was. From there we spent the next several minutes chit chatting about my trip before he finally left and I went inside.
I looked over the menu and saw they offered London Fog and any thoughts of coffee went right out the window. I ordered that and an oatmeal raisin cookie. With London Fog in hand I stepped outside to relax and enjoy it and my cookie on the patio. My hope for a quick coffee turned into a much longer stay because my drink was so hot! Holy cow and it took forever to cool off enough that I could drink it.
Being back on the road was short lived. Not long after leaving Sunrise I pulled into a boat yard, which was a trip, in order to connect up with the Larry Scott Trail. I guess this trail is just over seven miles long and is a part of the Olympic Discovery Trail and the Pacific Northwest Trail. It was absolutely stunning. Easily as good as, if not better than, the Interurban Trail I rode the day before. It was smoother, flatter, and had more varied scenery. Really loved the pic I got of Shadow in the tunnel and in the corridor of yellow flowers. The smell was amazing.
Rejoining surface streets left me with just over 20 miles remaining. Let me tell you those 20 miles felt like a roller coaster. Up, down, up, down. On and on. Was really getting tired of it to be totally honest. Flying at 30 MPH to hit a brick wall on the other end, drop into the 34, and grind at 6 MPH to the top. All while trying not to blow yourself up and without getting out of the saddle. Honestly I just put my head down and ground each one out. Sadly looks like tomorrow may be more of the same.
I was nearing the end of the day and came screaming down Paradise Bay Road when I saw cars stopped ahead of me. Not only were they stopped in my direction, but I could see cars to the left and right. I slowly passed the cars by and when I got to the stop I could see the issue.
I was turning onto WA-104 which has the Hood Canal Floating Bridge and it was OPEN for a ship to pass through. All the backup was people waiting for the bridge to reopen. I pulled around to the shoulder and felt kinda sheepish just cruising on past everyone waiting. I did roll up to two guys who had exited their vehicle and were enjoying the view while waiting. I asked them how long it normally takes and how long they’d been waiting. They’d been waiting 20 minutes already and that the entire process can take up to an hour. We continued chatting until I saw up ahead the warning lights had gone out. They scrambled to get back in their truck and I said my goodbyes and rolled out.
Honestly, the crossing was a white knuckler for me. I had a fair amount of room on the shoulder, but it had the typical road crap in it. Then there were the winds which were random and gusty. Next there were the big rigs which, when combined with the wind, pushed me around once or twice. Oh, and did I mention be on the lookout for any road surface irregularities? Thankfully, the crossing went off with incident.
After the Hood Canal Bridge it was only a handful of miles to my campsite. I was really early so I stopped at a nearby Chevron to pick up both lunch and dinner. I enjoyed my lunch right there in front of the store in the shade and packed the rest into camp.
Got to have a few hours to relax and take my time getting camp setup, ate my dinner, got everything charged for tomorrow, and just finished writing this entry! Now to curl up with my book for the rest of the evening before calling it a night.
New bike fund: $5.00 (+$0.11)
59.64 new miles — From Wandrer.earth
Sunny-Sunny, 59°F-75°F, Feels like 63°F-87°F, Humidity 75%-30%, Wind N 2mph-N 4mph – by Klimat.app
— myWindsock Report —
Weather Impact: -6.3%
Headwind: 17% @ 0.2-10.3mph
Longest Headwind: 34m 41s
Air Speed: 12mph
Precip: 0% @ 0 Inch/hr
— END —
Max elevation: 416 ft
Min elevation: 29 ft
Total climbing: 3741 ft
Total descent: -3710 ft
Average speed: 15.33 mi/h
Average cadence: 78 RPM
Average heart rate: 121 BPM
Average temperature: 69.80 °F
Total time: 06:38:19