Day 26: Bodega Dunes – Samuel P. Taylor State Park
Distance: 45:63 miles.
Average Speed: 9.9 mph.
One of the reasons I opted to cycle the Pacific Coast route, other than the fact it is renowned as being a beautiful route, and its linear simplicity on a map, was the portrayal of the small town of Bodega Bay, in the film ‘The Birds’. Ignoring the deviant avian behaviour, It had a pleasant small town appeal that would suit me fine, if it was an example of places along the coast.
Popping into Bodega Bay last night, I discovered ‘Taylor Street’, a steeply banked residential street that looked reminiscent of a street used as a location in the film. Indeed it was, but the school that was up the hill in the film wasn’t there. Checking afterwards, I discovered that the school was in Bodega, just off today’s route.
Today, I ended up riding with the guys who I’d met on the way to the campsite last night, Matt from Oakland, and Joe from Gilroy, who were cycling, for a few days, from Mendocino to San Francisco. We went for breakfast at a cafe in Bodega Bay before setting off for what would, hopefully, be a slightly shorter day. It turned out that Matt and Joe both played guitar and had met while playing in a band together. They both also had musical instrument making fathers.
We rode along the coast through Bodega Bay before turning inland and over a couple of short climbs, then I took a short detour to Bodega, where the Potter Schoolhouse – that was used for the infamous school scene in The Birds – was filmed.
Shortly after, at Valley Ford, Matt suggested an alternate route, away from the highway. It was through beautiful countryside but with some severe climbs thrown in.
Back on highway 1, we stopped for lunch in Tomales, the sun was out and the restaurant had a nice patio area at the side.
We continued down the long sea inlet of Tomales Bay, passing numerous busy oyster bars en route. Then we climbed over to Point Reyes Station where we picked up Burritos and a few beers from a local deli, before winding along Point Reyes Petaluma Road to our campsite for the evening, Samuel P. Taylor State Park. We were lucky, 3 hiker/biker sites were already full, and we were in the back-up site, along with a couple who’d also just arrived, Kelly and Dan. They were from San Francisco, and this was a trial run for a trip to Iceland later in the summer.
After an enjoyable day’s cycle, it was a nice way to end the day, with a few beers with my site-mates.