How can I ever leave this place?

I just rolled back into Portland a couple hours ago. I’ve done many a two day trip on Amtrak in the last fifteen years, but it’s still long, and my the final morning I’m itching to get off. Still, its always nice returning on the Empire Builder, since the return consists of the Columbia River Gorge and my first glimpse of Mount Hood. And I saw three bike tourists on WA SR 14!

And coming into Union Station on an appropriately drizzly day, I ran into two more bike tourists! They were waiting for the bus out to Tillamook to ride the coast south to San Francisco. Their original plan was to ride to Lincoln City and camp at Devils Lake, but that’s a long slog of a day on a surely busy US 101 (it’s Memorial Day weekend here in the States, the official start to summer) to get to possibly the worst state park hiker/biker campground on the Oregon Coast. I think I convinced them to stay at Cape Lookout instead, just about 10 miles from Tillamook and possibly the best hiker/biker campground on the entirety of this Pacific Coast. My bike touring good deed of the day! (Wish I had some Oregon Coast bike maps to give them, though.)

From there I headed to my Post Office box to pick up my two week accumulation of mail. While locking my bike, another cyclist stops and asks if I’m Shawn Granton. When I confirmed it, he wanted to thank me for writing the Zinesters Guide to Portland, since he used it heavily when he moved here last year! Then he asked me how my trip went! Apparently he recognized me by my bike.

Oh Portland, why do I ever think of leaving you?


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