Big day today as we make the largest climb of the trip, Legget Mt. You can see it above on the Map #3 profile, the BIG spike in the middle. A long, gradual uphill with a ten mile run out on the other side. SWEET!!!
Cold again this morning. The Nutella becomes unspreadable in low temps so Joe heats it in a hot water bath each morning, NICE!!! (red light is from my headlamp).
Somewhere up there is the top of the climb . . .
. . . and we switch from Hwy 101 to Hwy 1 which we will basically follow to Dan Diego. ‘Team Peckish’ (Denise, Jenny and me) are short a rider because Denise’s bike is in on the top of the van until we get to Ft. Bragg and it’s bike shop. She has a noisey rear hub and is worrying about it seizing up like mine did!!
We couldn’t start the climb until be stopped to see the ‘Drive Through Redwood’ . . .
. . . which was unfortunately closed for the season or just not open yet at 8:00am . . .
. . . either way we didn’t feel like trespassing so had to settle for this dramatic painting!!!
First switchbacks of the trip . . . .
. . . and up we go . . .
Words of encouragement . . .
. . . and the traffic that there was, was quite courteous!!!
Finally at the top, yippee the big downhill. On the way down I had a flat and eventually everyone passed me. Hugh stopped to help and soon Joe showed up too. He was riding sweep today. A half mile down the road my rear tire flatted again (need a new tire). After stopping to help again, it was Hugh first down the rest of the hill, then me and then Joe about a mile behind.
. . . at this point, on sort of a flat area, my bike started handling very weird. Hard to describe but if you ride a lot you know when something is wrong. I stopped at a Call Box pullout and checked the tire again to see if it was flatting. Nope, so on I continued. I knew we did not have cell service here because Joe, Hugh and I had tried to call Denise who should have been at the bike shop now to buy me a new tire.
I continued on and the bike felt VERY unresponsive. I would need to be hauled in by van, so looking ahead and seeing a car far in the distant, I made a u-turn to go back to the Call Box and call Tom for a lift with the van.
I made it across the road and onto the shoulder when the tube on Connie’ s fork snapped and down I went.
When I came to, the folks who had been approaching were stopped and getting bandages out to stop my finger from bleeding. I wish I could remember their names but can’t. They were on their way for a two week mountain bike adventure. I assured them I was OK (although my vision was ‘wavy’) and asked them to tell Joe what had happened when they met him ahead as he descended the mountain.
By the time Joe arrived I was pretty much’ back to normal’ and he now had a cell phone signal. He called Tom who was just leaving the bike shop with Denise and he responded to pick us up. In the hour we waited for him to arrive, we began calling bike shops in an effort to find a replacement fork. Looks like the closest replacement might be in San Francisco. Going to be a few days in the van for me and Connie!!! Blood on my water bottle from wherever I snagged my finger in the fall.
I had landed on my left shoulder and the left side of my helmet had a crack in it. I put Connie’s pieces together and from here she doesn’t look to bad because the fork stub is inserted in the steerer tube, although you can see the fork has sort of a ‘rakish’ angle . . .
. . . as I tired to move her across the road, into the sun, this is what happened, again. (white medical tape my good Samaritan’s left me to fasten my bandages, hanging from the handlebars).
. . . catastrophic failure. Once in camp, Tom took me to the hospital for ex-rays of my noggin, and things were fine. The ‘spacy’ head feeling would be gone by morning and my ‘wavy vision’ had cleared. The ER doc was from Green Bay and went to medical school in Madison. FUN!!!!