Thursday, January 23, 2014

Mill City Coffee Run

Nine of us sat at Starbucks sipping coffee and folding our cue sheets just so.  Departing Wilsonville, we immediately jumped on the I-5 freeway to cross the river.  It's dark and traffic is passing fast.  I drop my computer and u-turn to retrieve it.

I love the first exit into the Charbonneau District.  Leaving the suburban sprawl, then the busy freeway bridge, this exit takes us smack dab into pretty country.  Also, it sounds french.

Arndt, Bents and Fargo are like old friends.  These are your postcard perfect Willamette Valley roads.  Quilted like farm country usually is, it's easy to spot other riders ahead or behind, even at 90 degree angles.  
I blinked and missed Butteville.  Howell Prairie Road goes on forever.  It feels familiar, but maybe that's only because it lasts so long.  Just as I start lamenting how boring flat routes can be, we start climbing.  The group of us spread out and come back together, much like a mile-long accordion. 

We're enjoying the long pretty stretch along the Santiam River when someone's crank comes off.  I looked at his fully inflated tires, wondering why he stopped.  It took two of us to help him unclip from the detached crank arm.  Soon Rando Jeff rolled up to the rescue with an 8mm wrench that's not part of a multi-tool.

Back together again, both people and parts that is, we're off to the cafe.  This quaint little coffee house and restaurant is just east of the middle of nowhere, but there's a line inside.  We get sandwiches and cocoas and scones and a big corner table.

Now it's time to head back.  I'm riding with Rando Laura and Rando Chris and we're going fast.  Ahead of everyone else by several miles, we're racing daylight.  We take a right onto Angel-Gervais Road.  You know, the one where you're supposed to turn left.  One gorgeous sunset and three hilly miles later, we realize our error and turn back.

It's dark and there's the sound of a hundred dogs barking.  We plow on ahead, squinting to catch a glimpse of a flashing red tail light ahead of us.  Catching the group becomes our carrot.  Finally, almost back to the freeway bridge, we see a light.  It's one dude alone, so we continue on as a foursome to the finish control, where we are dead last.


  1. This more in the way of being an email rather than a comment on this blog post.

    Recently, you left a comment on the K-Hounds website / blog ("Hi, how do I get my blog listed? I'm rando # 7337 and my blog is bicyclekitty."). John Lee Ellis forwarded the message to Dan Driscoll and me, and we then forwarded to "sag," who created and maintains the unofficial "RUSA Blogs" blog. (There is a link to "RUSA Blogs" on Lynne Fitz's blog.)

    "sag" added your blog to the blogroll AND decided to list your blog as the current "Featrued Blog" (replacing the K-Hounds blog).

    My guess is that you'll get a bit of a boost in readership due to "RUSA Blogs."

    RUSA #6218

    1. Hey there 6218, 7337 here! Thanks for sending my blog on, appreciate it!