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  011 06/14/06 Eureka Ely Hills that keep on giving David  

Wednesday June 14, 2006 77 miles - Total so far: 581 miles

The good news is that we had 50 miles of downhill today! The bad news: In order to glide that far we had to climb 4 mountains with a total elevation gain of over 3,000 feet stretched over 27 miles of uphill. Gene called these climbs "the hills that keep on giving" because over and over again I would claim that we were "running out of hill" and the summit was just around the next bend. However, each turn of the road revealed another long stretch of uphill waiting for us. Each summit crossing brought a change of scenery as we transitioned from desert landscapes still blooming with wildflowers fed by last year's snowmelt to alpine forests of cedar and pinion pine to barren hills dotted with the remains of gold and silver mines.

Before leaving Eureka we stopped at the Pony Expresso Cafe, a bakery/cafe with great food and friendly service run by Mennonites transplanted from upstate New York. We stoked up on humongous sweet rolls and fresh blueberry turnovers, knowing that this would be the longest day so far both in distance covered and time spent on the road. We really enjoyed all the coasting through ever-changing landscapes, but the day was punctuated with just one too many mountains!

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