Saturday, July 28, 2007

Prineville to Paulina, OR

What a day! We saw miles and miles of open space, on our 58 mile ride today. After a long gradual climb we hit one of the most fun descents into a gem of a valley. Definitely a ride highlight. We all seem to be riding stronger and are traveling faster than anticipated, but with a 90 mile ride ahead of us tomorrow, we’ll get a real sense of how much the group has progressed.

Today we stopped in Post, OR. (photo of Post general store).
Which is significant to our journey for 3 reasons:
First - it is the geographic center of Oregon.
Second - it is the location where Linda lost her iPod to a port-a-potty. Although it was a sad moment, the comedic value of the loss mitigated the tragedy of the situation. The saddest part of the loss will be riding (tomorrow) our longest day on the trip sans music.
Third -we met Mariah, the grand daughter of the Post General Store shop keeper who amazed us all with her animal impersonations. This little girl could give Jim Carey a run for his money. She did the most convincing cougar any of us had ever heard.

After the ride we settled in for the night in Paulina, OR (population 36). This overnight ended up being more of a treat than any of us could have anticipated. The town Mayor Mason came out to greet us, the locals made us a pasta dinner, at which Linda's salvaged iPod (retrieved from the depths of the port-a-pottie) made a suprise appearance.
Add a dip in a 4 sandwich swimming hole in the Ochoco National Forest to the mix and , and music with “cowboy singer,” Jerry, who came down from the range to play for our group and end up with a truly perfect day for the Hybrid.Pedal crew.
It was amazing to see such different ways of life and to catch a glimpse of how creating wilderness areas impacts differnt groups of people. For instance, Mariah has grown up with daily wildlife spottings that without protected wilderness areas may one day become rare.
Stay tuned for updates on the iPod saga

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