After a visit to the jail Friday afternoon I headed over to our place at the coast. It was to be a quick trip to get some much needed work done then come back home Saturday. When I got on the road about 5 pm Friday there was a steady rain falling. It continued through the coast range which made for absolutely stunning scenery. This time of year the Tillamook Forest is lush and hyper-green and the rain just exaggerated the colors. The two lane road meanders through the mountains with the Wilson River alongside on the coast side of the range. At times I found myself thinking, “This could be like Europe, maybe even Germany. Yeah that’s it, this is Germany and I’m on a BMW!”
Many of the timber laden mountain slopes and peaks had those wisps of fog hanging on them. Several times I restrained myself from stopping to takes photos. The speed limit for most of the canyon is 55 mph with just the right amount of slow developing sweeps and curves. As with many canyon roads, especially on the Friday night of a holiday weekend, slow driving folk can be persistent obstacles. After passing some of these folks, I didn’t want to stop for photos and have to start all over with the passing game. It's a dilemma that has two options. I guess the only solution is to take most of a day going through the pass making many stops for photos.
I stopped in Tillamook to pick up a few things at the store then headed up the coast in the light coastal drizzle and wind. Breaking out from the protection of a wooded area just before the road drops next to Tillamook Bay, the onshore ocean wind gave the bike a hit which allowed me to lean into it yet still go straight. It’s generally a surprise and a fun one at that. Looking left out onto the bay at the peninsula that juts out from Cape Meares, I could see the gray out-of-focus look that an oncoming squall reveals.
Arriving in Garabaldi on the north end of the bay, it has that misty and quiet look that a fishing town has at the end of a work day. Around some more curves north of town and past the tide pools which are now covered with high tide, the road gently drops down near a serene looking Lake Smith. The drizzle has all but stopped; it’s getting darker and I’m almost to the house so I stop to record the scene.
The return trip home yesterday was almost a milestone. I only encountered one vehicle ahead of me for the entire 50 mile trip on Hwy 6 through the coast range. This was probably because most everyone was going towards the coast instead of away from the coast. It was a rarity that I gladly accepted. The sun was out and the temperature was just right at 60 F. A perfect day to be on two wheels enjoying the amazing scenery.
On the Road Again
14 hours ago