Our final two days were filled with AMAZING food. Food already tastes better when you are outdoors, but add in six hours of spin-class-intensity exertion and every meal becomes the best meal of your life. Day 7’s campground at Harris Beach was only a mile from Brookings which had a brewery and Thai food. Our favorites. We initially planned to rotate between cereal and bagel cafes for breakfast, but our campgrounds were frequently 15-20 miles away from the next town so we just ate cereal or power bars. Since Brookings was so close, we had a nice brunch there as we started Day 8. It was our last day with only 44 miles and a single hill; practically a rest day.
Our Day 7 ride to Harris Beach had fifteen miles on another idyllic country road. The rest of the ride was directly on 101 with a bit less shoulder than previous days. We saw two dinosaurs.
We bought sandwiches at mile 25 with the plan to find a picnic spot in the next mile or two. We didn’t find a place to pull off for a full ten miles. We had entered a section of road with minimal shoulder and no vista pullouts. It also had our biggest climb of the day. Thankfully traffic was pretty quiet and we felt safe enough, but we were getting pretty hungry. We finally exited the ‘Scenic Corridor’ and stopped at a beach for lunch. There weren’t any picnic tables, so we lay the tent tarp on the grass and had our prettiest picnic yet.
The Oregon Coast is so beautiful.
We woke up on Day 8 with our first foggy morning. We were camped on the bluffs over Harris Beach and we couldn’t even see the water. It was a good morning for our neon jackets and flashing lights. Here is the sunset from camp the evening before.
We were only on Highway 101 for twelve miles and we crossed into California after nine miles.
As we left Crescent City, CA we had three miles of climbing at 6-9% grade. It was hard work and the California drivers didn’t give us much space despite them having TWO southbound lanes to choose from. We finally crested the hill and spotted Del Norte campground within Redwood State Park. We turned left across the highway and descended two miles to our campground. After eight days and 442 miles, we had reached our destination.
My mom kindly drove seven hours to come pick us up at the conclusion of our trip, and she camped with us for the night. We drove into town together to see the lighthouse and get dinner. There was no way I was going to bike to and from Crescent City again. As grueling as the hill from Crescent city was, our campsite was two miles and negative 700 feet of elevation from the highway. That might not sound like much, but that is a 50-story building. If my mom hadn’t been able to join us that night, I would have eaten a power bar for dinner and called it a night. Instead, we drove into town and visited the lighthouse that had previously been obscured by fog and had a nice dinner together.
I wouldn’t recommend Del Norte campground to bicyclists because of the hill, but for car campers it is a spectacular choice. The redwoods are ancient and giant, even if the rangers wouldn’t let me hang my hammock from them.
I can’t wait for our next bike-packing trip! Central Coast?