We took a bike trip from Astoria to Cannon Beach, OR and pulled Chester and Gretel along with us in doggie trailers. We told you about Part I of the trip yesterday which found us in Seaside. Our plan was to continue on to Cannon Beach, spend a couple of days there and then ride back to Astoria – a total of about 60 miles.
Unlike the fairly flat ride from Astoria to Seaside, this stretch of highway between Seaside and Cannon Beach WAS NOT flat. The ride certainly wasn’t as pleasant. We had to go over a really big hill that put a lot of torque on my knees and almost the entire shoulder was covered with big rocks and broken glass.
We couldn’t exactly ride over the white line on the highway so that meant we had to bump the dogs along the side of the road and cross our fingers for no flat tires. At one point Gretel’s trailer almost flipped over (watch the video here).
Just when I started to wonder how all of the rocks got on the side of the road a big semi truck blasted past us, spraying us with golf ball size rocks. Seriously, I thought I was in danger of getting a black eye from one of them.
We did make it into Cannon Beach without real incident and, after getting turned around, found our campsite. The campground was very pleasant for what it was, a front-country campsite geared toward car campers. That meant warm showers and easy access to campfire wood but not much privacy. This time of year there were a couple of sites still available so we were able to check into tone for both of the nights we planned to stay.
After setting up camp we walked into town. We had a pleasant time eating dinner, wandering the beach and taking photos.
That night though we didn’t get much sleep. As quaint and wooded as our campground appeared, it was sitting right next to the highway. Apparently Night Time is when semi-truck drivers like to do a lot of driving and there is no jake-brake law through Cannon Beach. At one point it sounded like a truck was dragging a chain that was beating repeatedly against the side of the truck.
We woke up too late for breakfast the next morning. We rode our bikes into town to get coffee and something to eat before going to visit Ecola State Park.
Only one place in town served breakfast late but dogs weren’t allowed there. I love my breakfast so I was a little disgruntled I had to settle for lunch for breakfast…..and coffee.
After eating, we rode our bikes up the steep, windy road into Ecola State Park. The up-side was that the road wan’t nearly as long as I thought it was going to be. The down side is that it was terribly steep.
So there I was grinding away at the gears, grinding my knees and sweatting profusely up a couple of miles of road with absolutely NO shoulder. Did I mention that the dogs were whining and barking again so in between breaths I had to yell at them almost the whole way up?
The park was beautiful and we decided to go on, what I thought would be, a nice 4-mile hike along the beach. Well, it wasn’t that at all. It turned out to be a hike through the woods where you could barely even see the water.
The hike had some flat stretches but it was mostly UP and then DOWN which wasn’t pleasant for me and my already sore knees. We did get to walk on a short stretch of beach at the end but then it was back UP and then DOWN back to our bikes.
The next day we tackled the entire 30-mile ride back to Astoria. We had looked at a map and decided to leave the highway at Seaside in lieu of backroads where there would be less traffic and we could go over the older, smaller bridge again. I assumed the road would be flat like the ride down to Seaside was but boy was I mistaken.
It was very hilly. The plus side was that the hills were a struggle but not “oh my god” unmanageable. My already sore knees took quite a beating though…and it was HOT. The dogs were being restless and grumpy again too.
The ride back took us about 4.5 hours.
So you ask. “where was the fun in all of that”? Well, I love adventure, pushing myself and enduring a little discomfort in the name of a good story.
We got a lot of fresh air, exercise, got to take life at a slower pace and learned how to manage the dogs in the trailer so they complain less. We ate good food, took in beautiful sights and got to walk on miles of beautiful, sandy beaches. We met some great people along the way and came back with awesome stories. We get to say we did something a lot of people don’t do – pull our dogs by bike for 60 miles along the Oregon Coast.
The truth is, I had a lot of fun on this trip. Overall, I thought the dogs did great. Out of the approximately 12 hours we spent on a bike during this trip the dogs made noise (mostly whimpering but some barking) a total of maybe 2 hours of it. I had a great experience and am already planning another trip for us….although I may wait a while to break it to S 🙂