We've been blessed with absolutely beautiful weather this fall. Sunny and dry, with the trees blazing a riot of orange, yellow and red.
Though I've been trying to reduce my riding miles while training for an early spring 2014 marathon
, the weather has made it nearly impossible to stay off my bike. And so it was that I plotted out a 77 mile route
in pursuit of coffee and sunshine.
Lynne & Asta converged on my house at 8:15 or so, and together with Jeff, we headed out just before 9:00.
|These kids are trouble...|
We meandered south through suburban neighborhoods, finally crossing the Urban Growth Boundary on River Road south of Hillsboro. Took the requisite photos of cute babies at the Northwest Alpaca Farm.
|Too cute for words.|
|Sweetpea sparkles in the October sunshine.|
After roughly an hour of riding, we were ready for some snacks and coffee. South Store Cafe
in Scholls did not disappoint!
|Yup, pretty sure we've come to the right place.|
The baker was a total character. "Don't bug me while I'm baking! Get it? 'Bug' me?!"
|Cookies the size of lunch plates. Which kind to choose??|
Jeff couldn't decide what to order, so he ordered lots.
|Round 1: Breakfast sandwich|
|Round 2: Peach Cobbler & Cookie|
|Asta goes for the Torta|
|My Pumpkin Spice Latte|
|Bonus pumpkin cookies!|
After (too) much eating and coffee drinking, we bought some cookies to go (well, duh...). Lynne turned towards home while the rest of us headed up and over the hill towards St. Paul, with a plan of getting a second cuppa at The Banker's Cup.
|Heading up hill the jacket came off real quick.|
|Overexposed and sleeveless in the sunshine!|
|Look closely and you can spot Mt. Hood dead center.|
Along the way, we explored some new roads a bit off the beaten path that I wanted to scout for a possible future permanent. Found some gravel, but just for a short mile or so. Totally viable route, even on my skinny tires.
|NE Mountain Home Rd turns to gravel at the Yamhill County line.|
|The pretty switchback up on Bell Rd.|
|At least mine still runs.|
Back down in the valley, we followed the St. Paul Hwy over the river to, yes, St. Paul.
Sadly, the Banker's Cup closed at 1pm. We'd just missed it. We consoled ourselves by going across the street to the most excellent Burning Boar BBQ food truck and getting roast pork sliders.
|Their logo kinda freaked me out.|
So far, we were definitely on the wrong side of the calories consumed to calories burned ratio. Time to head north towards home and burn a few calories.
Along the way, we happened upon this couple on a fabulous side-by-side recumbent tandem. They were headed in the opposite direction, but we turned around to ride along with them for a bit and chat.
The bike had been built by the male rider, who is blind! Quite an impressive feat. Behind the seats is a trunk of sorts, with lots of carrying capacity for gear. I'm sure the thing weighed a ton, and they weren't moving along at more than 10mph or so, but they were having a grand time in the sun.
By the time we made it back to my house, we'd covered 77 miles in just under 9 hours with more than 3 hours off the bike. A lovely leisurely way to spend a sunny Saturday in good company!!
Strava route file here: http://www.strava.com/activities/90484819