Monday, September 12, 2011

8.24.11 Day 64 Up close and personal.

My phone had died last night so there was no alarm clock to wake me, but I didn’t need it. The anticipation of seeing Mt. Rainier was enough to stir me at an early hour. I unzipped the door, gazed out and just starting laughing, hysterically. I’m not sure if there is a word fitting to my reaction to seeing Mt. Rainier so close. There is no better way to view this peak. Pictures and descriptions would never do it justice. Its something that one would have to see for themselves. But you would need Clint to take you there.

Clint is already up and sitting in the chair facing the mountain. I crawl out and sit beside him for a few minutes. Just wow. He is probably just laughing at me now but I just cant believe my eyes. This is too intense for first thing in the morning. I just turn away, shaking my head and laughing. Purely amazing sight to behold.

I break down the tent and we start making our way off the mountain. Clint shows me another spot where Mt Baker and Mt. St. Helen can be seen. On the way out, I see all the intense roads and cliffs we traveled through at midnight to get there. Yeah, Im glad I couldn’t see it last night. Its not any better today though. On the way down, we stop before one of the big drops and take a look down. Yikes….Lets not linger for too long. At another stop, Clint shows me a rock that has a perfect fossil of a leaf. Too cool. We stop at a few more places and look at some other cool stuff before we finally make our way down the mountain.

We missed dinner last night so we decide to have a good breakfast before we take off to Canada. I order my usual omelet and Clint orders a breakfast of ham. The waitress asks if he wants to upgrade to the bigger size for a dollar and he agrees to it. When it comes out, we both immediately start laughing at the enormity of the piece of ham. It needed its own plate and it still hung off all the edges. He’s going to have to work at finishing that one. I wish I had a camera on me or my phone had battery life because it deserved to have its picture taken. Clint manages to finish the whole thing minus a small piece that I tried. He’s going to be feeling that one later.

Back at Clint’s house, I load up the bike and get geared up. Clint, however, is still packing. He disappears into the house for a while and I just sit around, bored and anxious to get on the road. We are a day and half behind now. I am now counting the time we need to make up if I want to stay on my schedule. I know the schedule means nothing to Clint, but its something that Ive come to live by. He gives me some warm socks, a fleece and a full coverage rainfly for my tent and Im really appreciative. I know I’ll need it in the coming weeks. I didn’t really feel prepared to tackle Alaska in September but I was just going to deal with it the best I could. Now I feel better about it.

Finally, at 2pm, Clint was ready to go. He wanted to go by Cycle Gear to buy a new tank bag so we go by there and pick it up. As he is packing his new tank bag, he realizes he cant find his registration and the address to the insurance company where he needed up pick up proof of insurance. We rummage through his things but find neither one. We had to go back to his house a half hour away, with no traffic. Of course, there is traffic. He finds his registration and we are back on the road again. We jump on the highways to get out of town as fast as possible. There is a lot of traffic on the way north and the bank where we need to pick up Clints proof of insurance closes at 5 and there is no way we will make it now. He calls ahead and has them leave it outside for him.. We get almost to Bellingham where the bank is, pick up the piece of paper he needs then sit down to decide our next step. Its getting late now and we still had a border crossing to contend with. It could be easy, or it could take hours, then we had to find a campsite. Just across the border is Vancouver so chances are that we need to get a ways past it to find a campground. We decide to just make it a short day and camp in Washington tonight somewhere on the way up. We go next door to a grocery store and buy some dinner to cook and start heading towards Larrabee State Park that is recommended by Clint’s friend. We are not too far away and are riding down the coast now into some fairly nice views. The park sits right on the coast but is between train tracks and the road. We ride around looking for a suitable campsite and until finally deciding that they are all pretty much the same. As we unpacked, we hear cars, Harleys, trains and planes going by. So much for peace and quiet. We decide to head down to the beach and are rewarded with a gorgeous sunset of bright red and orange hues. Okay, so not the best campground, but the sunset made it worthwhile.

Back at the campsite, we start cooking dinner. We boil up the sausages and snack on the hummus with wheat thins. I break out the garlic bagel crisps and snack on those as well as a bag of nacho cheese Doritos. I start dipping everything into the hummus and find out that I like nacho cheese Doritos in hummus. Then the sausages are done and I have them in tortillas, with hummus and Doritos. Haha. I was ready for bed after dinner. Third corner of my trip tomorrow, border crossing, Vancouver and then I didn’t really know what to expect beyond that.

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