You cycle 51 miles and whaddya get? Another day older and really, really tired. Today's ride back to the Vista House represents the longest ride of the year by 15 miles. I cheated on my previous rides by taking Portland's truly awesome MAX light rail line as far east as possible and setting out on my ride from there. Today, I said, to heck with that! I'm riding the whole way! And so I did. The MAX route cuts the distance in half but adds 300 ft. of elevation. It might take a little less time, too, but I always felt a bit of a pud taking my bike on the train. "Whatsa matter, little boy? Too far to ride by yourself? Want your mommy to carry you?" "Why yes, yes I do." But now that I've been able to adjust to the climbing a bit, I felt I could ride the whole way. Which I did, but the trip is pretty much at the limits of my abilities right now. Final tally was 1100 feet of elevation gain, 51 miles, 3.75 hours, 1,400 calories.
On the upside, I did get some new vacuum cleaner bags (sorely needed) at the Home Depot along the route, AND took some pictures of the interior of the Vista House. I hope the cool art deco details are apparent:
And of course, here's the ubiquitous photo of the boringly transcendent Columbia River Gorge. The Vista House is on the outcropping at center right.
All these gorge-ous shots remind me of a story a friend of mine told me about traveling in Ireland: "After a while you get up in the morning and look out the window and say, 'Not another Goddamned rainbow!'"
Anyway, now my quads are being obstreperous (does that mean they're turning into Quadsimodos?...sorry). I'm actually looking forward to a simple day of vacuuming tomorrow. But only after a night of looking like this: