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Catfish on a bike, part II Fallow along as Catfish takes us on another one of his great tours.

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Old 08-31-04, 02:45 PM   #1
have bike will tour
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13 rambling

Man where do I start? I am behind on logging here so maybe start from anyplace and just start typing and see how it comes out.

A few days ago maybe even a week it was still raining and cold I may have told you it was in the low 40’s up on LoLo pass the rain continued a couple more days and the temp stayed cool during the day and cold at night.

I wanted to camp at Jerry Johnson Id camped there before and liked the seclusion and just up the road and a ¼ mile hike there are natural hot springs to soak in. When I got there I was shocked all the trees had been cut down and the place looked naked I know this is bear country and there were no trees to hang the food bag from so I moved on and made another 40 miles down to 3 Rivers

I got into 3 Rivers camp ground and got a nice hot meal they only serve dinner and for 10 bucks I had fresh grilled salmon and loaf of fresh warm bread and salad This is a RV park and camp site and I normally stay away from these places but this one is nice had a hot tub and washer and dryer. Most everything I had was wet so the dryer came in handy.

Next day I rode into Grangeville and spent the night Then in the morning I climbed White bird hill the climb from this side is much easier than coming from the west When going the opposite direction you take the old road with 13 miles of switch backs and almost no traffic coming this way it is better to take the new road 10 miles or so of
7- 8% down hill madness. I was hitting speeds of 45 and better at times. I took the entire lane most of the time and was able to keep up with traffic. The trucks were gearing down and holding 35 mph so they were no problem. At the bottom I went into white birs an had breakfast. People in White bird are all friendly.

I gotta tell you the ride from LoLo pass to Grangeville is some of the prettiest riding Ive seen in a long time.

So I am following the Salmon river now and pulled off a couple times to enjoy the river and soak my feet in the cool water. I got to a nice place to camp and got set up and cleaned up . The weather was beginning to turn for the better the sky cleared and it was warming up. Later in the afternoon a fellow and his family pulled in to camp too. He had just finished up a 3 week tour and they came to pick him up we had lots to talk about.

The next morning I rode into Riggins MT and got a shower at the local high school then breakfast. Todays ride took me through the Payette national forest and again the scenery was spectacular there were up hill and down hill runs that pretty much equaled out in the end. I rode into Cambridge and spent the night in the city park.

Cambridge is a small town and the laundry mat is also the showers for campers cost a quarter for 5 minutes of hot water. Got a nice rib steak dinner I figured my body needed some protein for a change.

In the morning I headed into Hells canyon now most cyclists ride through the canyon and done spend any extra time in there. I don’t understand that. It is gorgeous. It is also hot during the day reaching over 100 but cooling off at night. The climb out of the canyon into Cambridge is 13miles and difficult I climbed it last trip as I was going east this time I got to ride down that hill and really enjoyed it.

There is a general store at the base of the hill so I pulled in for a cold drink and conversation. The lady gave me some ideas of where to camp and where not to camp. I decided to go another 7 or so miles near the Brown lee damn as Idaho power company has a camp site there with showers for 8 bucks.

When I got to camp it was hot well over 100 and I set the tent up and found some shade to sit in they had a water fountain with cooled water that was refreshing …

The night was quiet as there were not many campers in camp. The coyotes were howling most of the night but I find sounds of nature peaceful.

I got up really early and got going after breakfast of oatmeal and coffee and ½ a stale bagel. It was about 6:30 when I left it was cool and wind was calm the early morning sun was making soft light and everything took on a beauty different from yesterday mid day sun. a few fisherman were at it already fish were jumping and before I knew it I had 12 miles in and was starting the climb out of the canyon.

The climb out on this end is short and not so steep. I wanted to go and take a picture from on this one hill but on the way up I ran into several black bears and thought it better to turn around and forget the picture.

I met the most unhappy crabby woman that day running a store she was driving customers away with her attitude I could write 2 pages about her but ill just say I messed with her a little in fun and leave it at that.

When I got in to the town of half way I got lunch a big buffalo burger salad and potatoes and coffee then decided rather that stay there I would go an extra 13 miles and camp since that 13 miles is all up hill to 3,635 ft and just as soon would like to have it out of the way today instead of first thing in the morning.

That climb was long and hot I took my shirt off for ½ hour it felt great but didn’t want to get burned so after 30 minutes put it back on. I was getting overcome by the heat there are not trees just hills and rock and desert like conditions. I was into the last bottle of water and sweat was running down my face into my eyes and down my back I was looking for a place the road flattened out just a little to stop and dry my eyes but kept going maintaining 3.5mph traffic respected me for the effort and gave me wide enough room as they passed. The road looked like it would go on forever and as trucks disappeared behind a curve I would hear them down shift aghhh steeper grade coming up . Eventually I could see the top about a mile away the last mile is where It got
The steepest. At the top I rested a minute and drank the last of my water and got ready for 8 miles of down hill

At the bottom I pulled into the reservoir park and got a camp site and shower for 12 bucks a little expensive but what the heck I was tired and ready to stop. Ya know I was ready to make dinner but I was still full from lunch so I skipped dinner and ate the other half of the stale bagel

I got out early again today it was 46 miles into baker city all in desert and mostly up hill and flats. It stayed fairly cool till 10:30 am then it got hot about 20 miles out in the middle of no where is this “COLD POP” stand id been there before and was a welcome spot in the shade I am not one for pop but I got a cold root beer and enjoyed a rest in the shade. Hours later I made it into Baker city I got to find a tire here or order one before I can go on and will rest here an extra day in a motel

That’s what has been happening the past few days hope I makes sense to you 4 days to bend Oregon and from there 2 maybe 3 days to the coast Ill come out in Florence Oregon
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Old 08-31-04, 03:09 PM   #2
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Great story... I can't believe they have hot tubs at trailer parks! What WILL they think of next!!??

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Old 08-31-04, 09:03 PM   #3
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You seem to be havin' all the fun!
Let us know about that tire & when ya get to the coast.
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