! I explained that I don't live here and only arrived here from California yesterday by bicycle. That didn't help at all and they insisted that I just put the same address on for return as for send. Now it seems to me that packages with the same address on for both send and return should make some alarms go off as much as packages with no return address. Much to my surprise, however, the tension in the office decreased significantly once I just complied, you could actually hear them give a sigh of relief after I stopped my questioning. Oh well probably never see that stuff again!
Yesterday in conversation with my wife Suzi and my dear friend Dennis Mandigo I decided to continue the trip as planned. I had come up with several alternatives, Portland, Seattle, and even the Canadian border completing the SCR, but since I made it to Bend in good time I turned in my SCR maps and in Redmond, OR (20 miles north of Bend) I began taking the Transamerica Bicentennial Bicycling Route (TransAm). This route was first inaugurated in 1976 and was the first official transcontinental bicycle route. I will be following this route now until I get to Missoula, MT. The route takes me straight east across the Eastern Oregon Plateau to Baker City, OR. There I finagle my way over the Blue Mountains into Western Idaho and take the fabled Hwy 12 up to Missoula. I regretted my decision immediately as I went out on a very busy Hwy. 126 into the parched landscape
. The Lord is merciful though and I had overcast skies all day keeping the heat fairly low. I'm camping in a wonderful Hiker/Biker campsite with Hot showers and they are Free! There are no other bikers here yet but I did get to enjoy my first storm in my hammock. Minimalist lightweight tent flies don't work so well when the rain is coming sideways. But not to worry It only slightly dampened my hammock, and actually invigorated me. I love a good thunderstorm! They remind me of my smallness (especially when your swinging too and fro in a hammock.......Whoopee!
Tomorrow I start climbing mountain passes again. Boy, the earth is lumpy! I'll probably do another 70ish miles as I would love to put this dry climate in that past and get to lusher landscapes. I guess I'll see what the road brings me next.......... tomorrow.
Distance: 50 miles
Ride Time: 3:30 Real Time: 4:00
Vertical Feet: 1800 ft.
I woke up super early today. I started repacking my bags since I was dumping about 12 lbs. of gear I thought I would try and loose the stuff sack for my hammock shelter/sleeping bag and put it in one of the rear panniers. I wonder if I couldn't sleep because I'm getting so used to my hammock? That might present some problems when I get home. "Good night Honey I'll be in the backyard in my hammock". It felt good to be lightening the load. True to what "Banjo" and "Hiker Box Special" said I was running heavy and it takes about 2 weeks to figure out what one really needs. Later when I went to send the stuff home I unfortunately trusted Google to find me the Office Max. After going around in a big circle twice I gave up and asked someone where the Post Office was. It turns out I had been going around it by a block for at least an hour! Once I was there I tried to turn in my 2 boxes without a return address. The "Government" doesn't like packages without return address ( think bombs, sarin, and anthrax)