Day 7: Seaside to Nehalem Bay State Park, 27 miles
Sunday is too short, a rendezvous with Jennifer at the Sou’Wester. This quaint resort features renovated Airstream trailers, a lodge and a delightful sauna to stave off the coastal chill of the Long Beach peninsula. Monday she must head back to Corvallis, so she drops me at Seaside where my ride resumes. After she drives off, I duck into the Starbucks to research a new rain coat, both the waterproofing and zipper failing on this one. I can’t find an adequate replacement, so I stop at the next hardware store for some to fashion a temporary fix.
I ride on to Cannon Beach, climbing over Tillamook Head, then descending to the quaint artist colony. I don’t stop this time, ride on and climb past the iconic haystack rock. The on past Arch Rock and to the tunnel, climbing over Neahkahnie Mountain. Here the rains return, thoroughly soaking and chilling me. I push on, past Oswald West, climbing the last ascent as both dusk and a heavy, drizzly fog descend. I turn on my full lights, but my visibility is so hampered I realize cars won’t have any better a time seeing me. I ride carefully, slowly down the long descent to Manzanita.
I reach the first market, shivering and drenched. Ah, a laundromat just a mile further! I stop and throw my wet clothes in the dryer, waiting an hour before heading to the state park just a few miles away. Rain greets me again on my way to camp, and I wonder if this wet weather will continue along this tour. I’ve been lucky before, many fall tours as dry as the summer. We shall see.