Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Day 4-A Different Landscape Around Every Bend

Day 4 greeted us with the best weather we have had yet. It was a sign of good things to come. We left Gold Beach and continued Northward up the Oregon coast on the 101N. The sky was clear, and finally the sun was shining. It wasn't warm, but compared to the past few days of cold and fog, it was a really welcome change.
The Oregon coastline turned out to be more spectacular than I could have imagined. Gone were the giant Redwoods of California, and in there place were the pines, firs, and other Oregon evergreen trees. The forest here is totally different, and holds its own kind of beauty. One of the most amazing things about the Oregon coastline is that the forest extends right out onto the beach, until the trees can't go any further without going for a swim.
Sometime later the forest transformed yet again and revealed a coastline of massive, undulating mountains of sand. The dunes of the Oregon coast are truly surreal, almost an alien landscape, with trees growing right up to, and even into the dunes themselves. It was truly a magnificent sight to see.
Yet again the dunes transformed into rivers and bays of gorgeous blue water glistening in the sun. We crossed an array of amazing bridges, from steel to stone, large and small. It was as if just when we got used to the environment around us, it changed and transformed again.
Lunchtime brought us into a small town called Florence, OR and a famous fish restaurant called Mo's. The view of the bay was great, and the food was pretty good as well. After filling our bellies with food and our bikes with gas, we were on our way yet again. We made a few more stops along the way for photos and snacks, enjoying every moment of the day.
One of the great things about being on a motorcycle is the smell of the environment around you. Moving through the forest, the aroma of the different trees and flowers floating in the air is incredible. It is another one of the many differences about being on a bike vs being in a car. I will say, however, that as we neared our final destination for the day, it was an aspect of riding I could have down without. You see, we are staying in Tillamook tonight, home of the world famous Tillamook cheddar cheese. Well, where there is cheese, there are cows. And where there are cows, there is . . .the smell of cows. For miles as we approached this tiny little town, the environment changed once more from coastal forest into farmland and pastures as far as the eyes could see. All around were the cows of Tillamook county, ready and waiting to do their part for the cheese industry. Ok, that may be going a bit far, but the point is there are a lot of cows here, and not much else.
All in all today was an incredible day. The riding was superb, the weather supreme, and the company good as always. Tomorrow we ride into Washington and pick up our wives in Olympia. It will be great to have them along as we make our way into Canada, and many more days filled with incredible scenery, amazing riding, and memories to last a lifetime.

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