August 9, 2006
My bike’s cumulative odometer broke 5,000 miles yesterday! That’s the total from the day I got it, on March 17th of this year. How many miles have you put on your car since then? 🙂
This morning I packed up and rolled down the hill to the cafe for some pancakes. It’s funny, I bet I could begin every journal entry with that line! “Woke up. Ate pancakes. Rode bicycle. Drank Coke. Ate one pound spaghetti. Sleeping on a picnic table tonight. Day two. Woke up. Ate pancakes…” I can call it “Pancakes and Picnic Pavilions.”
I wonder how many days in a row now I’ve had pancakes for breakfast? I’m afraid to figure it out. Anyway, this morning they were thin and light, but the price was right, so I went ahead and ordered a second breakfast of two biscuits and gravy. Second breakfast! Finest biscuits in all The Shire…
This morning I rode along The Salmon River for quite a few miles. Apparently in the 1870’s, a wagon train carrying $75,000 worth of gold was ambushed by thieves through here. It’s presumed that they hid the treasure among the hills somewhere. The thieves were all eventually caught, but the gold, to this day, has never been found. “There’s gold up in them there hills!”
In today’s early miles I had a flat tire. A piece of thin, sharp wire worked its way right on through to the tube. That’s at least the second, maybe third time such a wire got me. I wasn’t in the mood to play around with a patch, and just replaced the tube. Total repair time – 20 minutes. Oh yeah baby. Just as I was pulling out to get back on the road, I heard voices yelling behind me, “Jamie! Hey! Yo! Jamie!”
Troy and Mel! That was pretty neat, because when you get a man and woman’s voices yelling together, it can sound like a crowd. I had fun telling them about how I helped Art move yesterday. “Did you get rained on?” I asked.
“Oh, it was awful!” Troy said, “The wind blew our tent right out of ground! I had to get out at night in the middle of the storm and drive the stakes between rocks!”
We rode on together for a little while, but got separated since I’d be pausing mid-afternoon at Riggins anyway. The locals were friendly there in the library, with “a half-hour computer limit, but stay as long as you want if no one’s waiting.” I was there for two hours uploading pictures, conveniently during the hottest part of the day. Before going to the library, I had some Coke and Hostess Zingers at a gas station, and afterward went back to that same gas station for two hot dogs and a Mountain Dew. Then I rode out of town.
Riggins was a big rafting hub, and the route now left The Salmon River to follow The Little Salmon River. Allentown people – like the Lehigh and Little Lehigh, eh? Within an hour or two I caught Troy and Mel again, but I had it in mind to ride through the evening, so I went on ahead. “If you don’t catch up, send me an email and let me know what you’re doing in Oregon,” I said.
“Oh, we’ll probably catch you doing dishes, sitting in a river, mowing somebody’s lawn…” Ha!
In New Meadows I stopped in a gas station, where I had a liter of orange soda, and two half-pound ham & cheese Hot Pockets. That would be my dinner. I figured I may as well eat it there, since I’d be riding fairly late tonight. Out of town I passed a lumber mill near sunset, which was pretty neat because they had all these logs set out with sprinklers running over them. Across the street, fresh cut lumber was stacked.
It smelled good. Then I went through the Payette National Forest, and at dusk was hoping to see some wildlife, but didn’t have any luck.
The descent to Council was great. Most long descents have winding curves and switchbacks down the mountainsides, so you can never get up to good steady speed, but this one was just perfect… curving, but never so sharp that I had to use the brakes. I made great time.
Arriving in Council at dark, the Sheriff’s station was only a block off the main road, so I went in to ask about camping at the park. It’s a picnic table for me tonight. Life is good.