Good morning! Nate here.

After a great night of being in cell-service and at another state park, we depart for our first non-camping accomodations in the last three nights. Our final destination today is the Spoke’n Hostel, which is an adventure hostel, specifically geared towards cyclists. Many more photos and updates to come, as it’s sure to be exciting. We’ve been looking forward to staying there for the past few days now.

About a 63-mile day planned for today, with no real clue what the terrain is. We’ll see once we get out there!

Check back later for an update.

Update (4:00 p.m.): Michael and I both had good rides today. For me, it was a top-five favorite ride of the trip (for Michael it was a top 10, but that’s admittedly weighted by an Achilles tendon issue that makes climbing difficult).

We’re now both at the Spoke’n Hostel and cleaned up. I can’t even begin to tell you how great this place is. It’s incredible.

I’ll start with stories from the ride…


Per usual, I was up before the sun, and rolled out of camp at 6 a.m. The roads were well paved and I quickly made it to the 25-mile mark, at Dayville. I swung by a cafe, in which I asked the server, “any other cyclists today?” It was only 7:30 a.m. at this point, so I expected a “No” in response. To my surprise, five cyclists had already rolled through, also heading west! I guess I wasn’t the first one up.

After eating breakfast and having a chat with another touring cyclist that rolled in, I moved on. The other touring cyclist in the cafe was “Milo,” who Michael had given the codename “Ian” in the past few days’ blogs. We chatted for a bit before I went on.

Before Michael reached Dayville, he saw a 5′-long snake near the road. He named the snake Edmund.

Then came the climbing. We passed through John Day Fossil Beds area, which provided an amazing view of Picture Gorge.

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Getting closer to Portland every day!

There was a spectacular tree filled with shoes, mid-climb… no idea what that’s about.


After climbing to 4,100 feet we earned a sweet downhill into Mitchell, and basically coasted the last 6 miles into town.


…and that wasn’t even the highlight of the day. The real treat was when we got to our destination.


The Spoke’n Hostel is a converted church which runs a hostel except for the two hours on Sundays when they have a service.

Six or so other cyclists–all heading west, or cycling within Oregon–are also staying at the hostel. We enjoyed meeting them and hearing about some of their adventures as we shared the evening together.

The hostel has bunk beds in a common area, a couple of bedrooms, laundry, a kitchen, musical instruments, games, and more–and the pastor, Patrick, is a truly skilled barber! He gave me a haircut and a straight-razor shave.

Before

After!

When Michael arrived, we went out for a lunch/dinner at one of the local eateries in Mitchell. It was stellar!


We came back to the hostel where several of us then loaded into the ’88 Dodge Ram van and headed for the Painted Hills.


It was an incredible way to end the day, seeing this geological wonder we would have otherwise missed entirely from the route.


After coming back, we were served ice cream! Now it’s time for some sleep.

You can view today’s Relive ride here.

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