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NORTHERN CALIFORNIA BIKE TRIP, JUNE 24 - JULY 6, 2001 by Lois Horowitz

THE YELLOW SCARF AWARD began last year when, prior to the Britanny trip, Ken King thought it would be fun to start a tradition of awarding a yellow bicycle scarf received as a gift from Emily Hopkins, an out-of-town cyclist friend of Ken's and Joan Slote, for notable events (acts of kindness,courage, stupidity, etc.) that occur on a tour.  For the particular deed, the person gets to wear the scarf until earned by the next person. So far, the scarf has been to France and Ireland.Here are the northern California trip awards along with a brief log of our trip. Ta-da..

Meeting Day, Sun. June 24, 2001 - We all arrived safely in Dunsmuir, California in the shadow of  Mt. Shasta and a whisper away from the Oregon border at the local Travel Lodge to begin our Northern California bicycle trip led by Marge Cooper. There were 15 riders and 2 in the van for a total of 17.  Riders were Stephanie Abel, Doc Faulkner, Harry Baldwin, Jeff Gianformaggio, Nick Nicholson, Stogs & Susie (not their real names) Stogsdill, Tack & Nida Lam, Doug Paulson & Mary Ann Hautman, Jim Elliott, Bill Hayward & Sylvia Nielson, and Lois Horowitz. Vanners, water carriers, shoppers and camp setter-uppers were Marge Cooper and Al Horowitz.

The trip had not even begun when someone already won the Yellow Scarf.  On arrival day, the scarf went to Harry Baldwin, for driving an extra 300 miles and dragging Doc Faulkner along with him.  No, Harry and Doc did not get lost.  Harry just left his altimeter, odometer and other expensive imeters and ometers that make his bike trips extra enjoyable, at the motel where he and Doc spent the previous night.  They discovered the missing bag when they stopped for gas 150 miles away and, of course, they just HAD to go back for them (especially since Harry was driving.) They did make Dunsmuir in time for dinner, however, which, after all, is very important. We'll deduct a few points for that.

Day 1, Mon., June 25, 2001.  Dunsmuir to Yreka, about 45 miles. The weather was perfect as we headed north to Yreka, an elevation gain of about 800 feet.  It was a very pleasant ride largely on country roads paralleling Highway 5.  And the Scarf went to Nick Nicholson, for falling over on his bike in a bit of gravel while practically standing still within the first ten miles of the trip.  The other nominee was Jeff Gianformaggio for what I call his pity ride (Harumpf!)  Jeff nominated himself for being a good samaritan and riding with Poky Horowitz.  Of course, HE asked to ride with Poky.  But never mind. She'll get over it.  She's already over it.  Really.  Al Horowitz voted for Jeff, not Nick.  Can you believe that?  I'm over it.  Honest.
 
Day 2, Tues. June 26, 2001.  Yreka to Sarah Tottem Campground, about 40 miles away, mostly downhill. It started drizzling at about noon and did not stop until the next morning.  For those of you who have ridden in rain, you will agree that warm and wet is better than cold and wet.  And The Scarf went to Mary Ann Hauptman for falling off a cliff, sort of.  Mary Ann was looking up through the rainy mist to get a photo of the hills shrouded in clouds.  The perfect photo always requires a little dance by the photographer but one must not forget those backwards steps.  Mary Ann forgot and tumbled down a teeny incline of sand.  In her effort to protect her beloved and costly camera , she fell flat on her back with hands and feet in the air.  Mercifully, neither Mary Ann nor the camera suffered any contusions or abrasion  The Scarf was hers, hands down (or up as the case may be).  The pre-dinner activities in the campground consisted of attempting to dry shoes at the campfire which non-camper Al Horowitz started in a non designated campfire site presumeably due to lack of camping experience. He chose a site under a tree near some low-hanging branches so we wouldn't get wet while toasting our tootsies and for which he could have won the scarf if Mary Ann hadn't earned it so spectacularly. 

After a delicious dinner in the campground, we all high-tailed it to our tents and fell asleep before dark to the patter of rain and the setting of the scene of the next day's scarf award.

Day 3, Wed. June 27, 2001.  Sarah Tottem Campground to Happy Camp, about 38 miles. The answer is: Yeah, it does.  The question is:  Does it get much better than this?  The rain finally stopped shortly  AFTER breakfast.  And The Scarf was awarded to Jeff Gianformaggio for doing the backstroke in his tent the night before.  Jeff put a tarp under his tent and turned up the edges sort of like a saucer.  That was mistake #1.  The second mistake was sleeping on a giant foam pad  rather than an air mattress. Foam makes a great sponge as Jeff discovered and within a few hours, he swam over to relatively drier ground, squeezing himself into Marge and Stephanie's tent-for-two to dry out.  Honorable mention At about 5 a.m., Marge encountered a mountain lion near the rest room scared off by the sound of traffic and lots of arm waving and grunting by Marge.  None of us heard a thing as we had trained our bladders so we would not have to leave our tents in the middle of the night.  The trip to Happy camp was short, flat or down hill and dry.  Once at the motel, we took over the parking lot (luckily, empty) and began the task of hosing down the tents and destroying the motel-keeper's pansies.

Day 4, Thurs. June 28, 2001.  Happy Camp to Oak Bottom Campground, about 42 miles. We left Happy Camp in a burst of sunshine and fairly flat riding, arriving uneventfully at the campgound to have a lovely din-din, camaraderie and general all-round fun. On the road into the campground along the Salmon River, Tack and Nida were having their appetizer, raspberries from some bushes, alongside the road.  Bill and Sylvia shared the scarf honors for changing the same flat tire three times.  Of course, it was the rear tire and the paniers had to be unloaded each time.  There was some heavy competition for honorable mention today.  1st, to Susie Stogsdill for changing her long biking pants to short ones on the side of the road behind the van where (2nd honorable mention), Al Horowitz could see her in the rear view mirror, and did.  3rd HM went to Nida and Tack Lam for washing themselves at a campground faucet in the buff.  No one is reputed to have seen them, however, they 'fessed up on their own and encouraged the rest of us to do likewise at the earliest opportunity. 4th HM went to Doc Faulkner for waiting and waiting and WAITING for that perfect bush whereupon there was a porta-potty just around the bend two seconds later, the only porta-potty that day.

Day 5, Fri., June 29, 2001.  Oak Bottom Campground to Boise Creek Campground., about 48 miles.  Another lovely day of generally flattish riding, picture-taking and great weather. Stephanie got the award for not seeing the big-as-outdoors T-shirt and helmet dummy of Marge sitting on her empty bike to lead us into the campground.  Stephanie denies that it was even there.  But that may be why she won the award.  It is still being hotly contested as a  mirage as a few others didn't see it either.  Susie got an HM for getting off her bike and spinning the wheels wondering why her bike wasn't moving.  The reason, Susie, was HILLS.  Most of us were delirious due to the heat. Well it LOOKED flat.

Days 6-7, Sat. June 30/Sun. July 1, 2001  Boise Creek Campground to Eureka, about 40 miles.  Lois (moi) got the award for getting underfoot at Boise Creek Campground.  The weather was growing warmer and in my valiant effort to get an earlier than usual start with my biking buds, Harry and Doc, to clear the two summits we had to climb that day as early as possible, I watched pots (of oatmeal) boil, lifted lids too many times, generally got in Marge's way, then took off without my water bottle.  On top of that, once the summits were cleared and we made a side trip to a gas station, we did not return to the road the way we came and I swore to Harry that we were going the wrong way - almost refusing to budge another inch -  even though Harry's expensive imeters and ometers said otherwise. Despite all, we arrived at the Best Western in Eureka and enjoyed fish dinners and an extra day of rest, relaxation to check out Eureka's great Victorian buildings.   Jeff G. got the scarf for losing his card key to his room in the jacuzzi.    Rumor has it that he thought some other person had lost it and he actually might have called him a bad name.Days 6-7, Sat. June 30/Sun. July 1, 2001  Boise Creek Campground to Eureka, about 40 miles.  Lois (moi) got the award for getting underfoot at Boise Creek Campground.  The weather was growing warmer and in my valiant effort to get an earlier than usual start with my biking buds, Harry and Doc, to clear the two summits we had to climb that day as early as possible, I watched pots (of oatmeal) boil, lifted lids too many times, generally got in Marge's way, then took off without my water bottle.  On top of that, once the summits were cleared and we made a side trip to a gas station, we did not return to the road the way we came and I swore to Harry that we were going the wrong way - almost refusing to budge another inch -  even though Harry's expensive imeters and ometers said otherwise. Despite all, we arrived at the Best Western in Eureka and enjoyed fish dinners and an extra day of rest, relaxation to check out Eureka's great Victorian buildings.   Jeff G. got the scarf for losing his card key to his room in the jacuzzi.    Rumor has it that he thought some other person had lost it and he actually might have called him a bad name.Days 6-7, Sat. June 30/Sun. July 1, 2001  Boise Creek Campground to Eureka, about 40 miles.  Lois (moi) got the award for getting underfoot at Boise Creek Campground.  The weather was growing warmer and in my valiant effort to get an earlier than usual start with my biking buds, Harry and Doc, to clear the two summits we had to climb that day as early as possible, I watched pots (of oatmeal) boil, lifted lids too many times, generally got in Marge's way, then took off without my water bottle.  On top of that, once the summits were cleared and we made a side trip to a gas station, we did not return to the road the way we came and I swore to Harry that we were going the wrong way - almost refusing to budge another inch -  even though Harry's expensive imeters and ometers said otherwise. Despite all, we arrived at the Best Western in Eureka and enjoyed fish dinners and an extra day of rest, relaxation to check out Eureka's great Victorian buildings.   Jeff G. got the scarf for losing his card key to his room in the jacuzzi.    Rumor has it that he thought some other person had lost it and he actually might have called him a bad name.

Day 8, Mon. July 2, 2001.  Eureka to non-designated campspot near Dinsmore.  About 75 miles for some of us, half for the bail-outs. The temperatures during this week were about 100 degrees.  We also had to regain the elevations we lost the first week.  Plus, we had our two longest (70-75 miles) days in this half of the trip.  Can't have everything.    We encountered a nifty ten percent grade which a bunch of us walked.  The van knew just where to wait for us and don't think we weren't hanging out of the windows, it was so full.   The scarf should have gone to the ranger who told Marge about an undesignated camping spot right off the main road that in turned out to be 9 miles off the road.  The scarf should have gone to Al Horowitz for finding us a great place to camp. How'd we overlook that?

Days 9-10, Tues. July 3, 2001-Wed. July 4, 2001.  Camp spot to Weaverville, about 70 miles for some of us, half for the bail-outs. Another sweltering day punctuated by marvelous patches of redwoods covering the roads.  We passed through such burgs as Peanut and Hayfork.  Jeff G. got the scarf AGAIN, this time for getting the creeping crud.  His poison oak showed up, no doubt acquired at the last campground.  It covered his inner arm with lovely red blisters.  He even got a little on his forehead due to sleeping with his arm over his head.   There were fire works I Weaverville and on our layover day, some of us toured an interesting historic Chinese Temple, saw the 4th of July parade, and did the town.

Day 11, Thurs. July 5, 2001.  Weaverville to Redding.  A great ride.  It was an easy 43 miles, more down than up, so we didn't notice the heat as much.  We arrived at our lovely air-conditioned motel, dined, retired, rested, enjoyed.

Day 12, Fri., July 6, 2001.  Redding to Dunsmuir.  50 miles. Another hot day.  Some of us took most of the day to do the 50 miles on the 'what's our hurry?' theory.  It was a gradual climb most of the way and not many trees to offer protection.  That might have had something to do with our leisurely pace.  We took respite where we could find it.  Arrived in Dunsmuir back at the Travelodge and prepared for departure the next day.  It was a wonderful trip, lots of fun, the weather was generally good, the companionship great, no problems.

It doesn't get much better than this!Days 6-7, Sat. June 30/Sun. July 1, 2001  Boise Creek Campground to Eureka, about 40 miles.  Lois (moi) got the award for getting underfoot at Boise Creek Campground.  The weather was growing warmer and in my valiant effort to get an earlier than usual start with my biking buds, Harry and Doc, to clear the two summits we had to climb that day as early as possible, I watched pots (of oatmeal) boil, lifted lids too many times, generally got in Marge's way, then took off without my water bottle.  On top of that, once the summits were cleared and we made a side trip to a gas station, we did not return to the road the way we came and I swore to Harry that we were going the wrong way - almost refusing to budge another inch -  even though Harry's expensive imeters and ometers said otherwise. Despite all, we arrived at the Best Western in Eureka and enjoyed fish dinners and an extra day of rest, relaxation to check out Eureka's great Victorian buildings.   Jeff G. got the scarf for losing his card key to his room in the jacuzzi.    Rumor has it that he thought some other person had lost it and he actually might have called him a bad name.

Day 8, Mon. July 2, 2001.  Eureka to non-designated campspot near Dinsmore.  About 75 miles for some of us, half for the bail-outs. The temperatures during this week were about 100 degrees.  We also had to regain the elevations we lost the first week.  Plus, we had our two longest (70-75 miles) days in this half of the trip.  Can't have everything.    We encountered a nifty ten percent grade which a bunch of us walked.  The van knew just where to wait for us and don't think we weren't hanging out of the windows, it was so full.   The scarf should have gone to the ranger who told Marge about an undesignated camping spot right off the main road that in turned out to be 9 miles off the road.  The scarf should have gone to Al Horowitz for finding us a great place to camp. How'd we overlook that?

Days 9-10, Tues. July 3, 2001-Wed. July 4, 2001.  Camp spot to Weaverville, about 70 miles for some of us, half for the bail-outs. Another sweltering day punctuated by marvelous patches of redwoods covering the roads.  We passed through such burgs as Peanut and Hayfork.  Jeff G. got the scarf AGAIN, this time for getting the creeping crud.  His poison oak showed up, no doubt acquired at the last campground.  It covered his inner arm with lovely red blisters.  He even got a little on his forehead due to sleeping with his arm over his head.   There were fire works I Weaverville and on our layover day, some of us toured an interesting historic Chinese Temple, saw the 4th of July parade, and did the town.

Day 11, Thurs. July 5, 2001.  Weaverville to Redding.  A great ride.  It was an easy 43 miles, more down than up, so we didn't notice the heat as much.  We arrived at our lovely air-conditioned motel, dined, retired, rested, enjoyed.

Day 12, Fri., July 6, 2001.  Redding to Dunsmuir.  50 miles. Another hot day.  Some of us took most of the day to do the 50 miles on the 'what's our hurry?' theory.  It was a gradual climb most of the way and not many trees to offer protection.  That might have had something to do with our leisurely pace.  We took respite where we could find it.  Arrived in Dunsmuir back at the Travelodge and prepared for departure the next day.  It was a wonderful trip, lots of fun, the weather was generally good, the companionship great, no problems.

It doesn't get much better than this!

Day 8, Mon. July 2, 2001.  Eureka to non-designated campspot near Dinsmore.  About 75 miles for some of us, half for the bail-outs. The temperatures during this week were about 100 degrees.  We also had to regain the elevations we lost the first week.  Plus, we had our two longest (70-75 miles) days in this half of the trip.  Can't have everything.    We encountered a nifty ten percent grade which a bunch of us walked.  The van knew just where to wait for us and don't think we weren't hanging out of the windows, it was so full.   The scarf should have gone to the ranger who told Marge about an undesignated camping spot right off the main road that in turned out to be 9 miles off the road.  The scarf should have gone to Al Horowitz for finding us a great place to camp. How'd we overlook that?

Days 9-10, Tues. July 3, 2001-Wed. July 4, 2001.  Camp spot to Weaverville, about 70 miles for some of us, half for the bail-outs. Another sweltering day punctuated by marvelous patches of redwoods covering the roads.  We passed through such burgs as Peanut and Hayfork.  Jeff G. got the scarf AGAIN, this time for getting the creeping crud.  His poison oak showed up, no doubt acquired at the last campground.  It covered his inner arm with lovely red blisters.  He even got a little on his forehead due to sleeping with his arm over his head.   There were fire works I Weaverville and on our layover day, some of us toured an interesting historic Chinese Temple, saw the 4th of July parade, and did the town.

Day 11, Thurs. July 5, 2001.  Weaverville to Redding.  A great ride.  It was an easy 43 miles, more down than up, so we didn't notice the heat as much.  We arrived at our lovely air-conditioned motel, dined, retired, rested, enjoyed.

Day 12, Fri., July 6, 2001.  Redding to Dunsmuir.  50 miles. Another hot day.  Some of us took most of the day to do the 50 miles on the 'what's our hurry?' theory.  It was a gradual climb most of the way and not many trees to offer protection.  That might have had something to do with our leisurely pace.  We took respite where we could find it.  Arrived in Dunsmuir back at the Travelodge and prepared for departure the next day.  It was a wonderful trip, lots of fun, the weather was generally good, the companionship great, no problems.

It doesn't get much better than this!
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