Day 46: July 29: Lone Pine Campground to Newhalem WA: 47 miles

Sorry for the late post, pictures to be added later.

So, today we conquered our last mountain passes, Washington and Rainy. As it turns out, that was the easy part of the day.

We woke up and started making breakfast. The dried food from last night left us rather hungry, so we chowed down on our packed food. The shredding of wrappers and growling at eachother must have shown we were hungry because our neighbors stopped by and offered food. They were in the middle of a week long adventure, and realized that they had way too much food packed. They gave us some protien bars, granola, cocoa mix, 2 boxes of crackers, and a pound of cheese. Most of this was consumed immediatly. We hit the road a bit late, around 10, after watching some large mule deer bucks play fighting in our campsite.

With only 6 miles to the top, we quickly were 1 mile from Washington pass and hit a road blocki. No bikes. All bikes must use the shuttle. Damn. We loaded our bikes on an old school bus which escorted us up and over the pass. No photos. That sucks! We biked 25 miles up this mountain just to be denied the summet. Oh well.

We were unloaded at the bottom of a couple mile climb to Rainy pass, Washingtons shorter sibling. We took a photo there instead.

We sure have seen a lot of baggers these last fiew days! For the non-bikers reading this, a bagger is a cyclist who is touring self supported.....carrying bags.

Anyway, we flew down the mountainside, with the miles clipping past....until the 25mph headwind hit. It was blasting us all over the road, picking up the dust and sand from the fresch construction. Stuipd Chip-seal. Even though we were dropping in elevation like mad, we made horrid time. The fresh chip-seal was dusty, it was windy, and the traffic was heavy. I am so sick of chip-seal. It vibrates your bike and steals all your it makes it impossible to see traffic in your mirrors. Also, you cannot hear the traffic or the words from your fellow riders.

Checking my bike computer, we did 2750 feet of cliimbing today. Yikes, I didn't think it was that much, but that helps explain our struggle today.

If you remember from yesterday, we somehow missed our grocery stop and resorted to eating our packed food. No problem, we always have a few meals packed for just such a situation. Well, we ate a packed lunch and dinner yesterday, then breakfast and lunch today. Rations are low, and guess what.....the next grocery store closed at 5pm when we pulled up at 5:17. No groceries today, no restaraunts, nothing.

We found a campground and scraped together whatever food we had left. We are now nearly 100 percent out of food and fuel. Missing 2 grocery stores in a row normally hurts, but without any restaraunts or anything else for so many hard miles....and we are hurting. I would pay fifty bucks for a cheeseburger right now.

At sunset, TJ and I went on a couple mile walk to a couple buildings in the distance....hoping they would have a pop machine outside. No luck.

Tomorrow it is only 15 miles until the town of Marblemount, which the map shows as having lots of stuff. It better!

Laura still has a bit of peanut butter in her jar, I am going to scrape that out and have that as a snack before bed. Tomorrow we are thinking of covering about 35 miles and finding a hotel. We have not had showers, laundry, for a decent meal for a few days.

Well, off to bed. I just noticed we crossed 2000 miles. I think we will have to celebrate that with piles of food

47 miles (2008 total)



Chris and Laura:
Wow what an amazing accomplishment you two have almost accomplished. I live in Belfair, a small city about 10 miles south of Bremerton. It would be a shame that you have made it to far and for us not to see each other. I noticed that your track has you taking the Coupeville/Port Townsend ferry. If you let me know maybe I can meet you up there. Let me know either email or home number. 360-552-0297.