9 years ago, a group of four of us tried riding our bikes down to San Francisco. We turned back at Redding, California because we were running out of time. We didn’t realize riding such long distance in the summer heat can be so taxing.
9 years later, Fiona and I attempted the trip again. We rode for 12 hours a day, 4 days straight, and actually managed to cram in 3,264 km to San Francisco and back.
Day 1: Vancouver to Newport, Oregon, 745 km
Leaving town first thing in the morning, we ride down I-5 to connect to highway 30. From there on, it’s Highway 101 all the way down.
We both fell asleep really quickly that night. Neither of us have done this type of distance in a long time.
Day 2: Newport, Oregon to Willits, California, 734 km
Riding through very wet fog on the Oregon coast all morning was interesting. But as soon as we went past northern California, the temperature just kept rising. At one point we were riding in 37 Celsius weather. I drank up my 2 litre water and was thirsty for more. It was another long day in the saddle.
The scenery along Highway 101 cannot be beat.
Day 3: Willits to San Francisco, then up to Medford, Oregon, 840 km
We took the last bit of Highway 101 to get to San Francisco. At the Golden Gate vista point, we took some “we were here” pictures and then turned right around back. The rest of the day was spent on the I-5 trying to make some distance. We found a very nice campsite with hot shower and flush toilets. Dinner was instant noodles and ice cream.
Day 4: Medford, Oregon to Vancouver, 945 km
We booted it along the I-5 for the entire day, riding through rain, hail, sunshine, at least 6 accidents (including a motorcycle accident) and car fires and stalled cars. The goal was just to get home so we aren’t caught in the rain forecasted for Sunday.
945 km in a day is one of the longest rides I’ve ever done (second only to the Iron Butt ride I did way back in 2005). The most important thing was that we got home safe and sound.