And on the last day of our seven day gpskevin Olympic peninsula ride; Kinny Roger sang to me; as the town of Concrete kept getting smaller and smaller on my rear side mirrors. We rode away after a breakfast at the Lonestar Restaurant; definitely not a first choice.
The 5B’s bakery and eatery, which we visited yesterday had the most amazing pastries, drinks, take out foods imaginable but, they don’t open till 0900.
We followed the last of our blue track out of town with a strong and steady downpour on our backs, laying tracks towards the Olympic American alps.
There’s no shortage of water or windswept trees from our perspective now. The group dwindled down slowly as several chose to start heading home early, and two in the group don’t do dirt.
And then when the pavement ended we encountered the most beautiful mountain twisties road imaginable with all sorts of weather anyone would want thrown in. There were periods of sunshine, two huge waterfalls, rapids, huge moss covered boulders, rain clouds at all levels hovering above the tree line. I was lost in thought. Smells that only Mother Nature could conjure up that could raise the human spirit up to the point of hallelujah, I’m so glad that I’m still alive and doing well.
“Every rider knows that the secret to survivin’
Is knowin’ what to throw away
And knowin’ what to keep
‘Cause every rides a winner
And every rides a loser
And the best that you can hope for
Is to die in your sleep”
Skillful riders gain their reputation after riding through every kind of rain there is; just like we just did this past week; and don’t confuse your ride with a final destination. Just because it’s raining now doesn’t mean that you aren’t headed for sunshine somewhere.”
The town of Concrete, Washington which we left early was built between 1916–1918 and was named for a Scottish immigrant, who promoted its construction. It was originally supposed to be called Thompson, Washington but, poor old Henry Thompson died in a logging train accident so in 1918, they settled on calling it Cement City. This is on account of the two fires that leveled the place in 1915 and 1921. Enough said someone. From now we only build out of stuff that won’t burn. And if you want wood, then move to Seattle. As told to me by a local at the Lonestar who seemed to have been around that long to know.
To say that this was a great ride is now an understatement. Lifelong friends were made from people all over this country and Mexico. No one for one iota felt it necessary to bring up politics, their social status, or bike preferences. We all started and ended our ride in Eureka, Washington. The rain intensified somewhat by day, I now forget, as it never became an exclamation point on this ride; America the beautiful did. And the back way up roads to Mt St Helens and the ride towards Neah Bay now top my list this week.
Thank you everyone today and in the future for coming along on this journey.
And just so that I don’t continue to believe there’s only my wife, and two others only reading these stories let me know if you enjoyed any or all.
What worked: My Frog Toggs rain gear are extremely lightweight, cheap and don’t give you that plastic all around feel. Most riders are wearing some type of Alpine star boots and of course Klim and or Rivvett riding gear.
Communication. Only the father and son and husband and wife wore a Sena or Cardio system. The rest of us, thankfully were able to ride in our own thoughts, without having to endure anyone’s else’s running commentary or perspectives.
The motorcycles. The Honda 500x proves to us all that it’s all about the rider and not about the ride. Panniers. A top case is your most valuable storage space. On attitude.
Mile after mile of whoop-de-do’s, one after another, like a crazy-good curvy road turned on its side.
After what could’ve been a thousand miles in a week I’m now tired, looking forward to visiting my family and waiting on my wife to fly into the Pacific Northwest and to relax for awhile.