Going to visit those ever so missed Grands (and their parents) who moved to Sacramento area near the end of August. OH HAPPY DAY!
On our way south we have stopped in Eugene Oregon (Oregon — where there is no sales tax, and they pump your gas!) to take our folding Bike Fridays to where they were born — the Bike Friday factory. As folding bikes, they are easier to take with us on camping and other travel adventures, so we are having ours “electrified”. Now they too will be pedal assist electric bikes, but with the option of not using the motor (replacing the motorized front wheel with the regular one) with no extra drag as on the BULLS bikes.
Too much information here, let’s move on.
Susan found us an Air B&B in Eugene for the two (or maybe 3) nights we would be here waiting for our bikes to have their overhaul. It is difficult to impossible to get a good photo of the house as it is somewhat like being in a tree house. Susan met the young owners while unpacking some of our stuff and says they are really nice people.
After dropping off the bikes, we wandered around looking for — guess what! – outdoor shops and bike shops. Recall — no sales tax. After we found and purchased a few items we could not live without, it was dinner time, time to retire to our B&B (I cannot yet figure out what the second B stands for), time to watch a video on Susan’s computer, and time to go to bed.
A bike ride! YAY! We drove the 30 miles south to the town of Cottage Grove to bike the Covered Bridges tour. We did not dance but we could have. We had sandals.
After parking the van at Bohemia Park, I did some practice loops in the large parking lot. Though I have been biking a lot, this would be my first time on my electric bike since my accident on May 28th. Remember that? I was a little uncomfortable at first pedal, was jerky at stopping, and needed lots of space around me. I gradually became accustomed to the feel and off we went.
Crossing the street from the park is the beginning of the Row (sounds like ‘cow’) Rider Trail that would take us to see four covered bridges.
Starting from town the trail was typically boring as there was not much to see. But soon it opened up a bit to some farmland, the lake and other views.
Eventually we got to our first bridge, built in 1925. Although this bridge was open for us to ride on, it is closed at the other end so is not a usable bridge.
Finally we got our first view of the lake. I do not know the name of this lake, but there is a dam at one end.
In the 1940s a small town of 450 people was moved. The Dorena Dam was one of several dams constructed at that time to prevent flooding of the Willamette River basin. The railroad tracks were also removed and the rail bed is now the Row River Recreational Trail. Read about it here, and look closely at the bottom sentence of how Row River got its name.
The dam is down there…
The other end of the lake…
We had almost an interesting encounter along the trail. Fortunately I avoided eye contact.
We started seeing these signs that said ‘Row River Trail closed ahead’. We met very few others along the trail but no one indicated a closure, and we could not see any actual closures so we kept on — for at least another eight or nine miles until…
Looking at our insufficient bike map we could not tell if the road up there would parallel the trail or go off into the wilderness. With Susan’s gps and my asking an exercise walker, we determined that the Row River Road would skirt the construction and take us to where we needed to be. No shoulder on this road had me a bit concerned at first glance. But we soldiered on and had not one car on the road in the two mile ride to rejoin the trail (through a broken fence line).
The road did parallel the trail and as we looked down on it, we could see the huge hole with a tractor working to repair damage on the trail. Good work folks.
Where we left the trail to continue the loop on Shoreview Drive we got to bridge #2.
It looked big and beautiful as it crossed over the river… but was under construction. Nice to know that these bridges are being saved and will stay around for the future.
The next two bridges would come up soon after. The first one is also closed to traffic, even foot traffic. It crosses a short distance over a small river arm.
Near to town was our final bridge and the only one that was in use for traffic. Bike traffic as well as automobile traffic.
A few short miles back on the trail and we were at the finish of this fine day. Yesterday we had lots of rain and could not determine what today would bring. It brought lots of blue sky amongst some clouds that cleared later in the afternoon to allow us some beautiful sunshine.
Entering back into the town of Cottage Grove, and near our parked van, there was this to greet us.
Beautiful end to a beautiful day. And a very successful day on my electric bike ;’-)