Saturday, July 26, 2014

Coos Bay

View of Coos Bay from the bay bridge

The bay bridge into north bend & oregon's Bay Area.  Me thinks these bridges are getting higher & higher.  HOB HOB

Isthmus slough south of coos bay

The Oregon dunes pushed us back Inland so far that yesterday we had to once again cross the coastal mountain range

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Oregon dunes

Made it thru oregon dunes 40 mile stretch to the bay bridge outside N bend. Dunes as high as 500ft

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Little Green Man

I've been dying to share this story but the last 100 miles have been hard and I've been biding my time. 

It seems my avatar on Tagg's site has become somewhat iconic.  I didn't realize this until I was enjoying an evening with my good friends Vince & Diane a few weeks back when she shared just how addicted he'd become tracking us on this site.  To the point that he'd check the website in between making rounds and seeing patients.  The folks at Tagg update it typically once a day but there have been a few exceptions and when it's not, it drives Vince nuts.

YBD's Notes - You have to read this in the voice of George castanzas dad's (from seinfield). 

"Why isn't the little green man moving?  What's going on?  Why hasn't he moved?" And then Vince called Diane.  "Get ginger on the phone & find out why the little green man hasn't moved.  Has something happened?  Are they OK?"  And this goes on for like an hour.  

Have to admit I rather like my new status since on the first walk some people called me the dog cancer boy which kinda made me feel like a circus carny.  

I was looking for a JPEG to go with this blog & dontcha know it I came across this musical tribute to the little green man and from Breaking Bad no less.  Here's the link 

Friday, July 18, 2014

Monday, July 14, 2014

Pacific Coast Highway

Tomorrow marks our first week on the PCH and wow what a wicked week it's been.  And I mean wicked in the boston sense - wicked cool, wicked pretty, wicked dangerous, & wicked wicked.  Let me start out with the stretch leading up to it. 

Highway 20

It helps to have native knowledge on the road and I'm grateful for Cindy & Rob & Vince & Diane who on separate occasions took me scouting which convinced me it was way way too risky for the boys and me.  So I did the Salem to Corvallis to Newport stretch alone.  

Without exception it was singularly the deadliest road I've walked. Ever.  I should've known something was amiss by the complete absence of cyclist on Hwy 20 & that was the week of the 4th.

I stopped about midway at a church in eddyville to charge my equipment and the pastor remarked that they should receive hazard pay for living on the highway given the number of deaths.  Great. Thanks for that padre.

The droves of holiday boaters were one thing, the elongated lumber trucks to and from Philomath another but what really posed the greatest risk was the road itself.  The last 15 miles were virtually shoulder less.  That's fine - seen that done that before. But over time the road had eroded to the point that all that's left is inches of composite material that barely provided perch.

Guardrails separated me from 20-30 foot slopes and since I had very little leeway on either side I spent a lot to time straddling them.  In poker you always want to have an out. On the road I call them bailouts.  If you're on a collision course at least you have an option.  At best I had half an out and my odds were no better than a coin toss.

I can assure you, had I walked that stretch of highway 20 with the boys we would not have made it through alive.  Thanks to the folks who helped. 


Newport OR

Was a welcome sight and the start of a new chapter in this journey.  

I reflect back on our first walk when we took the port Jeff from Long Island ferry to Bridgeport CT and our plan was to take 25 up to new town and then over to Hartford.  Everyone I met said you knucklehead, take Route 1 along the New England coastline to boston.  So we turned south and walked back down to west haven and it was one of the best decisions I made.

I feel that way about the PCH and the timing was perfect.  For the most part we've had fair weather but just as I was taking on 20 and cresting the coastal mountains, temperatures in the wilamette valley, a basin that runs from Portland to Eugene, were topping the upper 90s and that's meteorologically significant to the coastal climate.  

As high temps in the valley rise and pull winds and mist off the Pacific Ocean and since we've been on the PCH it's been in the 60s during the day and 50s at nighttime perfect walking conditions for the fuzzybutts.

Except I'm cold.  I've since shed my gloves and neck gator and I'm kinda regretting that now.  There's a weird wettiness even to the warmth with which I am unfamiliar and the chill is sometimes unshakable.  

Whoever said 'the coldest winter I ever spent was the summer I spent in San Francisco'.  I'm not that far south yet but I have an inkling what they were saying.


For four months we'll be on this road - longer than any other we've travelled and I'm just learning her secrets.  The beauty of the Oregon part of it is if not unparalleled, unsurpassed by any coastline I've walked.  

Still.  I'm quite certain.  She has many secrets left. 

Friday, July 11, 2014

Scenes From the Roadside 2

Dog in bubble window. Never seen the crap outta me. Thought it was alien in a space helmet.

This one messed me up for days... In this context is pud a noun or a verb because I could be a pud & just not know it.  Or if I've been pudding all this time why can't i do it here at this street corner? I hurried along just so's I wouldn't be caught.  But maybe I shouldn't because I just like to pud...

This one is just creepy. We stopped at a dilapidated broke down house for shade & water & discovered this altar?  And to whom? The god of outdated toys? 

Got nothing on this one

Pretty sure there's a serial killer on the loose in woodburn OR

The flora of Oregon Coast

Must admit I'm unfamiliar with native plant life since it's my first time here and haven't yet found a teacher to guide me but the coastline is full of an awesome array of beauties.  Here are just a few I've seen. 

Perhaps you can help us in identifying these.

Friday, July 4, 2014

Leave The Light On

Last nite I slept here
Tuesday nite in a swampy mosquito infestested Burnt Woods trail
And the nite before in a gravel pit just outside Philomath. 

The upside - 7 more nites in places Iike these & I get a free stay!

Thursday, July 3, 2014

I Made it Boys

Welcome to the Pacific Ocean. 51 miles thru mountainous terrain & treacherous roads. Made it in 2 days time.  

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Mangos tabasquenos

I love these lollipops and I found them in a Hispanic grocer in Canby OR.  Coated with chili powder it's an esquisitely unusual experience that I'm addicted to.

I save the last on for my last nite on the mountain and savored every lick!  Reminds me if my days as Chef Big Dog.

Newport in my sights

Long day but successful one. 6.5 mi outside of Toledo. Found this spot just off hwy20, a disused driveway leading up to a barricaded area..  Should be an interesting nite.

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Sliver of Red

As I was just falling asleep I saw a sliver of red the briefest glimpse of what lies between these northwestern cedars and over and beyond this mountain.  


I think I know the origin of that onamatopia -yep spell chk didn't even help me with that one.  Some dude wearing a French frock coat with ruffles for cuffs & a white wig on his head on an expedition and his porter carrying his instruments and such remarks at the size of the mountains.  The dude says, Tis merely a Big Ass Hill.  Bah! This is what I think of when I'm up in the mountains all alone.

Climbed a few of them today but the best is yet to come.