Nehalam Bay State Park[MAP]

Riding with Dirk was fun at first, but it’s getting a bit exhausting having someone around all the time and the decision making that goes with it. I can’t remember much about the Oregon beaches and campgrounds we’ve been through; it’s a blur of getting in after dark, trying to organise dinner and laundry and then on the bikes again first thing in the morning. Yesterday we decided to have a barbeque so we brought snaggers and spuds at lunchtime. When we got to the campgrounds, just before dark, Dirk wanted to organise our time and was deciding in just what order we should do it:

“Well we could do the photos now, then we could try and go for a dip in the ocean, then we could watch the sunset, then barbeque and then have showers”.

Dirk had wanted to take a bunch of photos of us on our bikes and of me posing with my “TIRED AUSSIE…” sign so that he could put the photos up on the Tatonka website. After the last hour long “photo session” he had put me through at the Oregon sand dunes I knew it was not just a matter of a couple of snapshots. Dirk also had not yet gone for a swim in the Pacific Ocean, even though it had been a couple of hundred metres to the left of him ever since he left Los Angeles weeks ago. I was already exhausted by this stage and more than a little annoyed at having my time divided into allocated tasks. I just wanted to sit at the table and rest; not go anywhere, not do anything. I just wanted some “me” time.

He got the message and decided that the photo taking session could wait;

“We should go down and go for a quick swim now”.
“You go, Dirk, I’m just gonna hang out here a while and chill a bit”.

He got the message and decided the swim could wait;

“We are gonna miss the sunset!”.
“You go, Dirk. You don’t need to have me there to see the sunset”.

He got the message and decided to start the fire for our barbeque. Dirk got out his camera and his four lenses and took a dozen photos of me cooking sausages, me cooking potatoes, me eating sausages, me eating potatoes. Finally I told him that I’d had enough of posing and that he should put the camera away.

Nehalam Bay sunset (Day 57)

Nehalam Bay sunset (Day 57)

After dinner, I quickly headed off for a shower before he could organise anything else to do.

None of the Oregon shops stock Nutella.

Nehalam Bay sand castles (Day 57)

Nehalam Bay sand castles (Day 57)

Rules and regulations at Nehalam Bay Beach (Day 57)

Rules and regulations at Nehalam Bay Beach (Day 57)

Nehalam Bay sunset (Day 57)

Nehalam Bay sunset (Day 57)

Nehalam Bay sand castles (Day 57)

Nehalam Bay sand castles (Day 57)


Fort Stevens State Park[MAP]

I was up and ready to go at 7:30am and told Dirk I’d meet him at our next planned campground. The last thing he said before I rode off was to set up my tent at the next campground, but “don’t take anything off your bike so we can do those photos”. I got to the campground at lunchtime and spent some time chatting with Skylar and Chad; both seventeen years old and hitchhiking from their home town of Sooke on Vancouver Island to Montreal, via LA and Detroit. I was expecting Dirk to show up at any time but after two hours there was still no sign of him. I was enjoying being on my own again and headed down to the beach for a snooze. On the way back to my tent to continue napping, Dirk spotted me and suggested we go for a quick swim in the ocean and then take some photos. I told him of “my plan” and agreed that we could take the photos later. By the time I’d finished my nap, Dirk was there again wanting to take the photos of us on the bikes.

I told him I wasn’t up to taking any photos and just wanted to chill out. Later he asked to talk about our riding plans for tomorrow and I told him I was gonna have a short riding day and stop at the last state park in Oregon.

“Well I guess this is our last night then”, he said.

Yes, and instead of spending time with him I pissed off down the beach again to watch the sunset. Spoke with Skylar and Chad some more and then agreed to look over Dirk’s digital photos with him, as he’d previously organised for us to do…

Nothing was ever spontaneous with Dirk.

Wreck of the Peter Iredale, Fort Stevens State Historical Site (Day 58)

Wreck of the Peter Iredale, Fort Stevens State Historical Site (Day 58)


Fort Stevens State Park (Rest Day)[MAP]

Got up at about 5am and was ready to ride not long after. A dozy Dirk emerged from his tent and I went over to him and shook his hand. He reminded me that I had agreed last night to take some photos this morning and get a “statement” from me. I knew this could take some time so I told him I’d just email him a whole bunch of my photos when I finished my trip. This seemed to satisfy him but he still wanted a “statement”. He pulled out his microphone and asked me a few questions about the highlights of my trip, and I babbled away.

And then that was it. We had a quick hug in which I accidentally hit him on the chin and then I took off.

Had a wonderful short day of riding and had a huge campground almost entirely to myself. I camped under the thick canopy of a tree and despite it raining quite heavily during the night, not a drop hit my tent.

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