We are now in Oregon, on the famous road 101. We have had very little time to take care of the blog lately, as Clement needs the computer to work.
We spent 10 days travelling by car with our friends Clement, Quentin and Hawa. We visited the national parks of Yellowstone, Grand Teton (literally ‘Big Nipple’), and Craters of the Moon. The landscapes were absolutely fantastic and we really had a blast. We will take the time to write a post about this trip (with some photos of course) at some point in the coming weeks.
We went back on our bicycle the 29th of September, to go south. For the occasion, we decided to register on the website warmshowers (the equivalent of couchsurfing for touring cyclists). We have been hosted 3 times thanks to this website and it was a great experience ! Many thanks to Charles and Lisa, Marnie and John, and Pat ! Those 3 times have been wonderful, with evenings spent having very interesting discussions (we are trying to understand the American system a bit better in these rather tensed election times). Marnie and John even brought us to an illusionist’s show (Adam Trent), that was awesome !
In terms of weather, everything turned pretty sour. When it’s not raining, the wind starts blowing, and straight in our faces of course. We just stopped for 2 consecutive days, our legs not being able to follow, the rain being stronger than ever, and Clement needing a full day to work. It turns out that Tillamook is a city full of surprises : you can find a creamery, a french cheese factory (whose emblem is a blue heron with a bow tie and a beret holding a bottle of wine and some cheese !). Oh, and there is a great little spot for wild camping : in front of the McDonalds, on the side of the 101 (probably the worst night of our lives). We are going back on the road, still under the rain, but at least our legs are feeling better.
The Oregon coast is certainly very beautiful (for nostalgic people, this is where “The Goonies” was filmed) but the weather hasn’t allowed us to see it in the best light yet.
The whole west coast of the US is a very popular destination among touring cyclists. We have met quite a lot of people cycling from Seattle to San Diego, and even more going to Argentina ! On the road, this means quite a few advantages like very good signalling made for bikes, warning flashes when we enter tunnels or bridges, great free maps at the visitor centres… Unfortunately, we are also suffering from the large numbers : we have zero originality in the fact that we’re travelling by bike (locals see quite a few everyday !) and therefore the contact with people is a bit more difficult. We have quite a lot less smiles, less cars waving us ‘hi’, more cars honking aggressively (or even sometimes shouting/insulting us for no reason, which we never had before), less space when cars pass us, etc. After 3 months in Canada, the change is very brutal.
Yesterday, we reached the stage of 4000km cycled so far, and the clouds went away for a few hours just so that we could celebrate properly. Long may it last !