I know the adage is, "What goes up, must come down.", but today that was not the case. As of today, I have now surpassed my longest tour of 17 days. It was a doozy! 69.3 miles of hills! Okay, there were a few flat spots, but then the wind was blowing from the south so that didn't help much. Every single time I came down a steep hill there was a hairpin turn at the bottom and it immediately went back up! Today was an equal opportunity workout for all the gears! I got pretty good at making the hairpin then quickly shifting down to the small ring. Inevitably, I would end up in Super Granny. At Gualala, I stopped at a grocery store that had a bakery next door. I bought some more hot cocoa and a few other things then went to the bakery. They also had ice cream, but it was foggy and too cold so I had pastries (yes, more than 1) instead (and some chocolate milk). Also found an outlet and charged my phone while I read the newspaper. I was there about an hour I guess. Then it was back to the fog and hills. At Fort Ross I met up with Jess. We both agreed it was a sucky day. We talked to a couple of people then decided we would ride the rest of the way together. Jess is a powerhouse going up the hills. I would be granny gearing up and she would be cruising! Her bike doesn't gear down as low as Stella, but still she had to use more strength. It was a great distraction for both of us having someone to ride with. We managed to make it to Bodega Dunes by about 5:15. Long day in the saddle! Best part is the showers are free and the water is nice and hot!
Tomorrow is a rest day here for me. Jess and Carling will be moving on. Since they are finishing at San Francisco, I probably won't see them again. I will miss their company. It's been fun riding and camping with them. I'm sure I will meet some new people, but I will still miss my new friends! Christian may be here tomorrow night and hopefully I will see Joan and Werner again.
Tomorrow I will do some exploring (hopefully find a laundromat) and generally relax. Then it is one more campground before I ride through San Francisco to Half Moon Bay.