8 marathons down, 127 to go
1 state down, 8 to go
My starting point this morning is the parking lot between my hotel and the restroom in which I found out about the hotel. Today, I’ll be going through Klamath Falls, south on US-97, across the Oregon-California border, and ending up in Dorris, California; at least, that’s the plan.
I’m standing on this bridge when a truck goes by. Nothing unusual about being passed by a truck, but it is unusual to have a bridge bounce because a truck goes over it. Beautiful scenery. This is the environment for most of today’s trek.
Today is animal day. I see thousands of ducks, hundreds of geese, beautiful black-and-white birds, beautiful black-and-gray birds, a deer, a few horses, lots of cows and calves, and a herd of sheep being overseen by a pony. The sheep didn’t care about me, but the pony was quite curious. It walked the entire fence line with me.
I want to break out the real camera and take bird photographs so badly, but if I do, I’ll make no progress at all today.
Speaking of ducks, there is one flock that is not too bright. I’m walking along an aqueduct that is very popular with ducks, but whenever I draw even to ducks, they fly off. One flock flies about a quarter mile down the aqueduct. I’m walking in a very obvious pattern: straight line in the same direction and same speed, a vector if you will. Every quarter mile I catch up with these ducks, they fly a quarter mile, and we repeat this for miles.
I arrive at my last Oregon rest stop to discover they have a horse resting area. I’ve never seen that before, and it is a very nice setup.
Less than two hours from Dorris, and a little over two days from Weed. For the past couple of miles I’ve been fighting blustery head winds. I’ll fight that the rest of the day.
The scenery is gorgeous. This is my view east for most of the day.
A number of times in the past few days, I’ve been on very straight and flat highways where I can see to the horizon in both directions. Often, I’ve had those stretches of highway completely to myself, where the only sound I hear is the sound of my shoe making contact with the pavement. That’s a very peaceful feeling.
I’ve done it. The first real milestone, and the thing that gives me hope I can do this crazy thing I’ve set out to do. I have now completed the Oregon leg of my journey. I’ll be in California for a long time now and my next state border is a long way away Just three miles and one large hill brings me into Dorris. I start to get a bit concerned because there is supposed to be a motel in Dorris, and all I see is one RV park, but I see the motel as I round a bend.
I stop in a little store to see what’s available for dinner. The first thing I see is a large selection of all types of liquor. I’m quickly reminded I’m no longer in Oregon. In Oregon, anything besides beer and wine can only be sold in a state-licensed liquor store, so it was a quick reminder that I had crossed a state border. That, and sales tax.
I’ve made a decision about my Northern California route. To stay on foot between Weed and Redding costs me 200 miles in the mountains wandering north, west, south, and east through generally unpopulated areas. This makes no sense. So I’ll be trying to find a ride from Weed to Redding, and then I’ll be on my mapped route from there forward. There’s no point in burning a week for no purpose.