Friday, August 28, 2009

Day 59: McKenzie River, OR to Eugene, OR (58 Miles)

I woke up several minutes before my alarm clock this morning. Judging by my lively movements without the accompaniment of caffeine, I could tell that I'm very excited about these next few days. I threw everything together and made it out of the door by 7:00AM and pedalled ferociously to Vida, for a quick breakfast stop. Knowing I only had about 40 miles left until Eugene, I ate a very small portion and got back on the road in no time. As I got back onto my bike, I began to notice that my rear rim was rather untrue. I stopped for about 15 minutes and trued the wheel as best as I could, only to find that it was rather fruitless. Upon closer inspection I had found that my rim was done for. I had fractures in several sections on the rim and I just hoped I could make it to Eugene without the wheel falling apart on me.

I pushed forward with great rapidity, all the while looking very awkward with my wobbly rim. I made it into the outskirts of Eugene by 11:00AM and quickly found a UPS Store to ship my excess baggage back to Massachusetts. I said "goodbye" to my pannier bags, filled with many cumbersome items, and said "hello" to a faster, more agile bike. This newly unencumbered bike also made the presence of my wobbly wheel feel much more apparent, therefore I set my eyes to the nearest bike shop. Riding to the shop, I was treated to nice bicycle lanes and I started to notice cute girls with library glasses and others with dreadlocks. They all were riding bikes that were equally attractive as them. I then thought to myself: "This is my kind of town..."

I found a gem of a bicycle shop called "Paul's Bicycle: Way of Life." I was helped in figuring out the cheapest opportunity of replacing the rear rim and I'll be pleased with anything that gets me to the shore by tomorrow evening. As I left the shop, I realized it was too early to look for motel rooms, so I headed next door to "The Beanery." There I had a delicious Panini and some iced coffee. There I also witnessed a very adorable event. An older lady had tied her pet Beagle's leash to a patio chair outside the shop. While she was waiting in line, the Beagle proceeded to drag the chair into the store and knocked over several items. This precocious pup eventually found it's way to his surprised owner. Everyone in attendance had a good laugh.

It's starting to rain, and the forecast calls for better weather tomorrow. I'll be glad to have good weather on my final day. But that's not to say I'm complaining about the rain. I mean, what would a trip to Oregon be like without any rain? I plan on spending the rest of the day catching up with people on the phone and planning my next few days. I think I'm going to be in Florence until Monday, exploring the coast as much as possible. Anybody familiar with the Oregon coast in the area surrounding Florence? Let me know of anything worthy of a bike trip. Thanks!


Momma said...

Blake, Call my friend Lori Klein a.k.a. "Patsy" @ the number I gave you on the phone and I bet she has a few good places for you to visit. She will be coming down to get you on Monday so you should get in touch with her soon!!!!!
Love, Momma

Eric said...

Hi Blake,
We had our honeymoon in newport, about 50 miles north. We visited the sea lion caves about 11 miles north of Florence - worth a visit if you have time (

The whole coast is amazing, though...

So proud of you! What an amazing journey. When do you land back in Beantown?

may said...

I remember the coast being more beautiful north of Florence. Yachats (good luck pronouncing that one!) is a beautiful town 26 miles north of Florence that you should see if you're up for it. I've heard a lot of films were made there because it's so lovely. You might even recognize it!

Other than that, I'd say just ride north. :)

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