Saturday, July 8, 2017

2017_07_08 Puyallup/Tacoma to Santa Barbara Trip (Leon Matz & Mike Smith) (Day 8)

Author:  Leon Matz

Eureka to Leggett 92 mi. 4,880 ft left at 5:40 51 degrees arrived 2:00 101 degrees

I am almost too tired to write this post! I am exhausted! It by far the toughest day ! Thank God Mike was willing to get up early and ride! I might not have made it! To ride in 100 degrees is hard but climbing for me at that temperature is almost impossible! 
As most of you know Mike Smith is not a morning person and is a person who likes warm weather riding but even he saw the wisdom of getting up at 4:45 and getting on the road as soon as possible was wise! Mike even was up and dressed at 4:45 ! Thanks Mike!!!
We looked at expected temperatures for towns along the route at different times of the day and new it was doing to be a scorcher!
And with a bunch of climbing at the end of the ride we New an early start was critical!
The first 4 hours went relatively well averaging over 14 mph even though we were climbing most of the way! The temperature stayed in the low 60's until about 10 but then things started to change!
The warm clothes came off and the sweating greatly increased!
In addition to starting early we were blessed with lots of good luck today!
1. It stayed cool until about 9.
2. Averaged 14.0 mph even though gradually climbing the whole time.
3. Found a Subway in a small town just before it hit the 90 degree range. Here I ate a small amount of the sandwich had a bag of salty chips, bought some Powerade to fill both bottles with ice and liquid, and perhaps most importantly I filled my famous tube sock with a bunch of ice to tie around my neck! It was critical to keep me from overheating climbing in the heat as we approached the tough last climbs to Leggett.
4. Just before we came to the last 7 miles of climbing we came to road construction! We road past the long line of cars and trucks to the front of the line about two miles! It probably didn't make the people in cars happy because some have been waiting in line for 30 + minutes. We just couldn't wait in line and spend two or more cycles and 1-1.5 hours waiting in the heat.
5. When we got to the flagger he shared he would let us go at the end of the first cycle!
Mike and I about dropped yo the pavement when he said that!
6. Mike and I immediately started our plea for him to reconsider! We promised to stay on the shoulder, go fast, and not hold up cars!
Our pleading finally worked!
7. When he gave us a go ahead Mike took off like a shot! He really followed through with his promise! Without the cooperation of the flagger I may have not been able to finish the ride!
8. Within 5 miles we arrived in Leggett and found this store/ restaurant! Like an oasis in the desert! We had lunch, cooled ourselves off, called our motel to get directions! 5 more miles we finally made it to our motel! Hot, exhausted, and relieved!
Oasis in the mountain desert!
The lunch and dinner spot! 
After showering, a nap, and washing out sweaty clothes we bribed our motel manager to go drive through the giant Redwood tree on old 101! He even took our picture and then drove us to town for dinner! An hour later he picked us up and drove us back to the motel! Tomorrow we head back towards the Ocean where cooler temperatures should prevail! Plan to stop in Fort Bragg to possibly see Mike Hassur's son Connor! Then on to Fort Arena!

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