A Friday of Climbing, Scenery, and Seafood

I have landed in a very comfortable apartment for a couple days, thanks to the kindness of a sweet friend. I have some time to rest, regroup, and catch up with photos and blog posts. When I am on the road biking all day I don’t get much else done. In the evening all I want to do is catch up with family and dive into my sleeping bag, and rest up for the next day.

Friday was a big day of sorts. I only covered 33 miles but it was constant up and down, climbing up hills, hanging on for dear life on descent, and then climbing again. There were hardly any flat parts the entire day. But, the things I saw! I have tried to pare down the photos but there are still a lot because there was just too much beauty.

I set out from Seaside fairly early, stopping for a hot breakfast before I left town. I wasn’t too far along before the recommended road took a detour through Cannon Beach. I could see the sun shining on the bright sand so of course had to stop. This was only the first of many stops in spectacularly beautiful area! It was a perfect sunny day and the beaches were beautiful, and I especially loved the rugged rocky formations off shore.

The scenery continued to be amazing as I biked along. I wasn’t crazy about climbing so many hills but at the top of each one was another gorgeous view. My route planning has mainly been looking at the adventurecycling maps, picking a destination town, and letting the nice google navigation lady guide me there. Today though, the Google lady had her hands full trying to keep me on course as I kept taking detour after detour to look at another beach or another view.

Another new adventure after Cape Arch was a tunnel. There is no shoulder or space for a cyclist so there is a button you need to push before entering. This turns on flashing lights to alert the drivers that there is a cyclist in the tunnel. So, I turned on my own lights, waited for a break I traffic, and went for it. To make it more challenging it was an uphill climb within the tunnel so it wasn’t long before traffic caught up to me. The first car though, a big black SUV, turned on his flashers and patiently followed me through the tunnel. How nice was that! I was sure glad for the space at the other end though where I could pull over and catch my breath.

The day went on and I continued biking through pine forests, up steep hills to find more amazing views, and down yet more scary descents. I walked up the more challenging hills which weren’t that easy even walking. I figure otherwise though, I would quickly exhaust myself and I wouldn’t see the scenery either, being more intent on just moving forward.

I had my eye on a place in Rockaway Beach but I rolled by a marina with a sign out front – tent space available, and I wasn’t a minute past it when I made the decision to turn around. I was really tired and the thought of another 6-8 miles wasn’t appealing.

I ended up at the Jetty Fishery Marina and RV park. It was on the water with an island or sand bar on the other side, but I could hear the surf pounding beyond the sand bar. They had crab, clams, and oysters which they would sell you raw or cooked, so I ordered a crab. I was going to order 1/2 pound of crab but I had no idea that these crabs were 1 1/2 – 2 pounds apiece! Yes, I got one crab and I ate the whole thing, every delicious little bite. They cook them in seawater so it was salty, briny, sweet goodness!

It was a rather lonely and chilly night though. I was the only tent camper, and there were two RVs waaaay at the other end of the property so when the staff went home, I was out there on my own. The wind was blowing like crazy so I put my tent in the most protected spot I could find, and hid in a small shack for a while to get out of the wind and enjoy the working electric outlets. The shack was just as cold though so when the wind died down, I went back to the tent and pulled the silver emergency blanket that is usually under me over the top of my sleeping bag. This helped but it not only keeps in the heat, it keeps in moisture so everything was a bit damp when I woke up. That was nothing compared to outside though where everything was soaking wet with dew.

I had made a joke that I wanted crab for breakfast, but they took me seriously and left a note for the day guy to fire up the cook pot asap. The biker wants breakfast! He was expecting some burley scary biker guy so he was pretty surprised when I ambled over. We decided on oysters since they cook fast, and I had a half dozen. Pretty good breakfast, huh?! I joked that they have ruined me because now I’ll want to spend all my money on seafood everywhere I go.

But, it was time to move on and begin another day, which will be the subject of the next blog post when I get it together. Stand by for more……


About Kris Cunningham

We live in David, Chiriqui Provence, Republic of Panama! This blog is about some of our experiences in our new country.
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8 Responses to A Friday of Climbing, Scenery, and Seafood

  1. oldsalt1942 says:

    Paring down the photos. Digital sure has changed things, hasn’t it. I remember one time driving along the coast of Maine, which would probably give the west coast seaboard a run for its money, in the days of film. You’d come across some spectacular scenery, jump out of your car…click, click, click, click. Then five minutes later as you came around a bend you’d find more beauty and say, “Why did I waste all that film on that other place? Wish I’d saved it for here.” And then you’d have to take those little yellow or green cans into some place and wait FOREVER to see what you’d got. Now the problem is culling through hundreds of pics to get the dozen or so that are the best.


  2. wynnekwilson says:

    So relieved to see this update even although I have been tracking you. I will be a nervous wreck by the time you meet your husband! Lovely photos. Take care.


    • Oh no, don’t be nervous! To post updates I need time, energy, electricity, and Internet. If you don’t hear anything just figure one or more of those are missing, which is often the case when I am on the road.


  3. juliasdogs says:

    I’m enjoying your blog, and the photos are fantastic. Make sure you keep enough air pressure in your tires; you could be getting pinch flats. You should at least be carrying CO2 cartridges, if not a pump, (so you won’t be stranded). We are pulling for you!


    • Thanks, yes. These are new marathon tires that take more air pressure than my old ones, and I wonder if the older Panamanian tube just wasn’t up to it. I have a pump and patch kit, and now spare inner tubes. I was just so close to town and these stiff new tires are such a pain I thought it would be a lot easier to just go to town. I learned the hard way about air pressure before this trip! It’s s lot more work to bike on low tires.


  4. Carole says:

    Great photos. Love the idea of oysters for breakfast. Nice to see you are moving along without any incidents. Enjoy your trip and drive safely.


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