Leg 46 – Down the Rogue River Valley to Grants Pass


I made 79 miles today, down the Rogue River valley to Grants Pass, Oregon.

I got a reasonably early start this morning, around 8 am. It took forever for my breakfast water to heat up – 70% alcohol just doesn’t burn as well as 90%, especially on cold mornings.

I stopped close to the campground to visit the Rogue River Gorge, and then the Natural Bridge. Both are places where the Rogue rushes through lava tunnels – even disappearing underground in a rushing torrent at the natural bridge.

The next twelve miles slid by in a dream. With the cold morning air, long slanting rays of sunlight, slight downgrade, and the grandeur of improbably tall Douglas firs lining the road, I felt I could ride this road forever and never tire of it. I did not want it to end. I did not want this trip to end.

At mile twelve, I left the National Forest, and a sign for Prospect promised a cafe a half mile from the route. It was early to stop, but I had not had any connectivity for days, so I opted for second breakfast at 930 am. Thei blueberry pancake breakfast at the Prospect Trophy Room included eggs and bacon. And coffee. And good WiFi.

After Prospect, the landscape opened up again, to irrigated farms and dry looking orchards, and even some vineyards. There was more climbing than I expected. I happened on to a bike path that Google seemed unaware of, then got a little lost when I shut off the google voice telling me to get back on the shoulderless, heavily trafficked roadway. Then the bike path ended abruptly, leaving me on an unknown road generally headed in the right direction. But I made it into Grants Pass by 430, and checked into the Motel 6 because I could use a clean-up and campsites are likely to be scarce this beautiful Saturday evening, One of my raft trip friends will join me here later on.


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