After an amazing stay with Stan and Maura, we depart this morning for our last stop before Portland. It’s a shorter 55 mile day today (although our daily target) with mixed terrain, but trending uphill as we approach Mount Hood.

Our camping accommodations tonight will be at a primitive campground (so don’t be surprised if neither of us have cell service and can’t update this). We made it 57 days with getting a shower at the end of the ride every day. Where we’re heading doesn’t have showers, but apparently they have a fantastic lake as an alternative!

We’re in the home stretch. In Madras, we’re only 120 miles from downtown Portland, and about 220 miles from Astoria.

Check back later for an update (assuming we have service).

Note: We have minimal to no cell service at Clear Lake Campground, so Nate will update today’s post when he reaches Sandy, OR, tomorrow morning.


Update (end of day): A mixture of having no cell service and getting a late start from the campground on Friday unfortunately means I’m only getting around to updating this now (Saturday morning). Nevertheless, here we go…

After leaving Madras, we had a huge descent into Warm Springs Reservation. That also meant climbing back out of the canyon on the other side. It was a nice technical cycling climb on well-rested legs.

After the climb, the terrain flattens out onto a plateau. The rest of the day’s riding was dangerous with heavy truck, RV, and car traffic at high speeds and narrow to non-extestant shoulders. It was white-knuckle riding all the way. It was the most dangerous day of cycling on the tour, by far.

With narrow shoulders and careless drivers, both of us had many close calls with trucks nearly hitting us.

But, during that stretch, Michael had a great encounter. I’ll preface this with a story. Back in Dayville, on Day 55 we had heard about a woman who has been walking across the country from east to west. She had started last November, and had passed through the Dayville area about a week ago. I had asked about her route, and was told it followed more southward route than we were taking.

We heard about her again at the Spoke’n Hostel, this time catching her name: Lindsay. She was walking 10-30 miles a day, so we still figured we wouldn’t catch her, or our routes would be different entirely.

Fast forward to today, and Michael caught up to her outside of Warm Springs! They chatted for a bit about their cross-country experiences. Lindsay (and her pup, Thina) were also headed to Clear Lake Campground for the night, if they could make it. Michael invited her to stay at our campsite.

Right before turning into the campground, I met another touring cyclist, Patrick, who has been riding for 75 days, from South Carolina. Cool stuff! He was going to try to make it to Government Camp that day, but it was great chatting with him for the final miles before Clear Lake.

After both arriving at Clear Lake, we set up camp to what was our most primitive accommodations yet on the trip.

There were no showers anywhere in the campground: I cleaned-up with a few baby wipes, and Michael opted for a swim in the lake once he arrived. The camp was mostly tents, with a couple of RVs (and a single Airstream trailer that we both kept eyeing).

When Michael got to camp, we walked down to the lake so he could go for a swim. The lake water was much warmer than the air, making it tough to get out with the wind.

We went back to camp and I made us some dinner (instant potatoes). We also had a few servings of Raw Meal. Our food supplies were both running low by this point, as we hadn’t been restocking –with few places to stop en route, abd nearing the end of the trip.

Without cell service, I called it an early night and was in bed by 7:00 p.m. It wasn’t until 10:30 p.m. when I heard rustling and woke up.

Lindsay had made it!!

She was already talking to Michael by the time I got out of my tent, but she had walked a personal-record 30 miles to get to the site. We chatted while she set up her tent. It was a fantastic way to end the day.

That’s all for today (err… two days ago, by the time I’m writing this)!

You can view the Relive ride here.