To Eureka 87km
To Humboldt Redwood SP 100km
I love the Redwoods in Hanmer Springs. But just imagine 2000 plus acres of them, with a two lane, almost trafficless road weaving between these gigantic trees. That's what Juliet and I are experiencing right now. It's awesome.
We've worked to get here though. Inland from here its really hot at the moment. This heat draws in the cold air from the ocean, which brings with it Sea fog. That's great for the Redwoods, but makes everything else pretty damp and cold. Luckily, I didn't send all my warm gear home. We are often wearing two, three, and sometimes four layers of clothes, and this is summer? But oh so worth it.
There are alot of cyclists on this route. I'm sure I've seen more here the the whole of the USA. The good thing is, you get to meet them several times, as they cycle in tandem, but often do not stay at the same campgrounds. The German lad, Uli, we met in Astoria caught up with us the other day, and we cycled together. He's heading to South America, and is in no hurry as he wants to cycle through Death Valley. He hopes, that if he takes his time, by the time he gets there, it may have cooled down a little. He camped with us last night. Ju cooked some very horrible, store bought, macaroni cheese. She gave me the first batch, which I ate. Uli arrived back just after I finished eating, and as Ju started preparing the second batch. She served it up, and ate in front of us. Uli....."Is this punishment for being away two years. Your wife cooks and then eats all the food, and doesn't share?" Me.... "Yep. But I suppose I deserve it really...." Uli.... "Hmmmm. You kiwis have strange ways...." We ate breakfast with Uli at a restaurant, and then he went to a supermarket, and we haven't seen him since. Perhaps tomorrow.
We met a guy skateboarding from Seattle to LA. It was great chatting to him, sharing stories. He skates over 100miles (160km) a day, 13 hours. He told me his feet are killing him, as he has to ride the back roads. A skateboarder is considered a pedestrian and isn't allowed on the nice smooth 101 highway. His mother is following him, not on a skateboard, with all his gear, food, water, and I hope, spare shoes.
Another couple, newly retired, are making a lap of the USA. They expect to take a couple of years, as they may return home to Seattle when the seasons change. They're loving the relaxed pace that retirement allows. Their first cycling trip was some years ago, when they took their sons, 12 and 14 years, to Disneyland, from Seattle, on bicycles.
A group of Quebecians are also cycling in parallel with us. It's really fun catching up with them in the evenings, exchanging stories of our day. It makes such a huge change from the long lonesome days I've experienced at times over the last couple of years. One thing that really amuses me is the talk of the huge climbs on this route. I bite my tongue, as they tell of how they conquered, or not, these mountains. 1200 foot doesn't really feel like a climb, compared with the 10,000 and 11,000 foot passes Hannah and I climbed to get to California. But hey. It's fantastic to see so many out here challenging themselves.
Someone in New York has my Credit Card number. They are buying up large, taxis, meals, on line purchases. The good old BNZ noticed the irregularities, and knowing we were in California, and not New York, cancelled the card. Which is fantastic, except, now we have no credit card. We got a message to ring the BNZ collect, but do you think we could get a USA company to make a collect call...... I am so impressed with my amazing wife. She made seven very long telephone calls, to seven different people, and didn't lose her cool once...... on the phone. Eventually she just rang direct to the BNZ to try and sort something out..... Hmmmm. Yet another challenge. We need new cards. They will send them to us. What's our address? They will take three weeks...... Well that's not going to work.... Hopefully Ju's Debit Card will suffice, and the $500 cash I have in my pocket will last the thirty days until we fly home. I love a good challenge..... and they keep coming.
And the giant Redwoods will continue tomorrow. Such amazing scenery, and sharing it with such an amazing lady, makes this part of my journey one of the very best experiences of the last two years. How come I'm so lucky?