Thursday, June 27, 2019

Day 26 - Manchester to Stillwater Cove

Distance - 20 miles? 36 miles? 40 miles?
Distance to San Fran - less than one Fatdog!!!
Quote of the day - "I never thought I would bike 20 miles, eat a whole chicken, and bike again"
Today we had no idea where we were going. Okay, I guess we sort of had some idea. We woke up to mist, which quickly subsided - but made for a surprisingly warm and humid day.
Thinking we would have a short rest day, we hiked a mile out to the ocean to take in the view. The views were stunning, and we had the beach to ourselves - but the water was freezing!

We head back and have nice warm showers before packing up and saying bye to our new friends. Nobody is really in a hurry to leave the hot tub, warm showers, and communal fire.
We plan to ride 20 miles into Gualala today. The scenery is similar to the days before with ocean and farmlands. The roads, on the other hand, continue to get worse. How can you get worse than "rolling" hills with no shoulder and massive trucks? You add 6 inches of shoulder, but pave the road with a material so shitty that it rubs off and leaves behind a very bumpy road and a useless shoulder full of gravel. Wahooo! We can't complain too much - At least 90% of the traffic is courteous, and the ocean just keeps getting more turquoise and wonderful!
We make it to Gualala in no time and take a picnic lunch down to the campsite. We are hungry bears today and picked up a fan favourite - a whole roast chicken (we are monsters). The campsite is cold and shady and not what we were hoping for. Lucky for us there's many campsites to choose from, so we decide to go another 20 miles down the road - we are quite well fed after all.
We make a quick pit stop on our way out of the campsite and I must have propped my bike up poorly because it squashed my helmet and broke the cord into my intercom. I didn't realize how much I loved my intercom until I thought it was broken. I freaked out just a little. Without it how will I know who sees the cows first?! Tears may have been shed.
We manage to plug the cord back in and get at least one of the ear pieces to put out sound! I'm thankful it didn't happen earlier although maybe I wouldn't be so dependant on it if it had!
The next 20 miles are actually very pleasant. The road is paved nicely, and the hills are the nice floaty rolling kind! We also have a tailwind to push us along, and clouds reflecting beautifully on the ocean.
One of our friends from the night before (Matt from the Netherlands) catches up to us, and we end up riding an extra 3 miles to another campsite just past where we had planned. At least it will make tomorrow shorter!
We set up camp, laugh at the fact  we're all eating a bikers classic dinner of pesto and pasta, and wander down to the cover to see the still water - it is Stillwater Cove Regional Park after all. It wasn't all that still, and it was still very cold! We had Matt test it out for us this time.

As we played we may have accidentally polished off the cookies we bought for tomorrow. Don't buy baked goods early when you're biking... For some reason they never make it to the next day!
We taught Matt to play Race for the Galaxy - so basically just confused him for a couple hours - but he was a great sport!

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