Day 2 - Grayland Beach to Rainbow Falls - C2C - from Westport, Washington to Sandy Hook, New Jersey - CycleBlaze

June 4, 2016

Day 2 - Grayland Beach to Rainbow Falls

Who turned the heat on? 100F in coastal Washington. When the normal high is 65F. I knew it was going to be hot but this is ridiculous.

The Surf Eroding North Cove
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Got up before sunrise and rode down to North Cove in the shadows. The sun was barely peeking above the trees when I took in my last expansive view of the Pacific. Here at North Cove, the ocean has eroded miles of beachfront. Entire city blocks of the community on maps from the 1950s are simply gone.

Shoals at the Mouth of Willapa Bay
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Willapa Bay
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Then it was a leisurely and cool ride along the north shore of Willapa Bay. It is one of the reasons I chose this route and well worth it. Almost no traffic and majestic views. This morning the tide was out. I had wished for it to be high tide, but I’m not so sure any more. The low tide landscape was fascinating.

Fish Processing on the River Mouth
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I got into Raymod before 10:00. I though I would take a few hours off and then ride again by mid-afternoon. The library was open. I browsed Main Street and the historic Raymond Theater. Like so many other towns in western Washington, the logging industry is a shadow of what it once was - although the still is a Weyerhauser mill and yard.

The Weyerhauser Yard
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But downtown shows the effects of years of decline. Despite the pledges made by opponents of logging and various elected leaders, the economic development never came - and the few jobs at fast food places and motels don’t begin to replace the lost income.

The Willapa River in Raymond
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Empty Buildings Speak of Better Days
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The Art Deco Raymond Theater in Downtown
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So, I went back to the library after lunch since the bank clock was pushing 90F. Gawd, what a fool I was. I read for a while, surfed the internet, and by the time I left at 4:00 it was 99F. So I’m gonna write a letter to Trump:

Dear Donald,

Yes, there is something called climate change. It is affecting the entire planet. But then, you wouldn’t know because you haven’t been outside your air-conditioned bubble once in your life. And you sure don’t give the least consideration to any opinion that comes into conflit with you current prejudices. One of my 9th grade students called you a “sexist pig and an asshole”. I think that sums it up pretty well.

Sincerely, Jamawani

5:00 p.m. After a chocolate milkshake at the Dairy Queen it may have dropped to 98F, wow! I planned to get in about 36 miles before dark. The 7 miles to Menlo were fairly busy and exposed. In fact, I chose the Wallapa Valley because there were wide grassland meadows to make it warmer. Great planning! Stopped for a lemonade at the Menlo General Store.

The General Store at Menlo
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Willapa Valley Field
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Then it was another 24 miles to Pe Ell (pronounced P.L.) - nothing left at Lebum. After about 5 miles, the trees started provided welcome shade and it wasn't that bad for the rest of the way.

Pe Ell has certainly seen better days. I stopped in at the corner grocery and staggered around cycle-drunk trying to decide what to eat and drink. More lemonade and chips - sugar and salt. A pretty drunk young guy cornered me outside on the bench. He was riding a rusty bike and drinking while he rode. In fact, a lot of folks seemed a little toasted. Poverty, lumber industry gone, drugs, boarded up stores. I was glad to get back on the road.

Twilight and a fast 8 miles to Rainbow Falls Park. I had hoped to get there early and enjoy the big trees - a remnant ancient grove - but it was almost dark. I checked into the hiker/biker area and did the sponge bath thing. I was ready to sink into a deep sleep when the rave started at a house next to the park. Maybe 100+ decibels. It went on until sunrise. Oh, well.

Today's ride: 66 miles (106 km)
Total: 76 miles (122 km)

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