Down a Few Thousand Feet to Placerville – Thursday 15th May 2014 (50 miles but only 47 on route)

Today had a surprising amount of uphill – little climbs scattered throughout the day but especially when we did the last twenty miles to Placerville (pronounced, apparently, not like Place but like the Welsh Plas). The temperature increase during the day was a bit severe. We set off in warmth, having breakfasted on microwaved burritos in the Bear River Resort Cafe (all a bit expensive compared with the superb Middlegate breakfast or the one at Baker – pay per cup coffee at breakfast? we haven’t been used to that). The downhill was OK but we needed a decent supermarket and didn’t find one until about ten miles before Placerville.

The ride down from Bear River Resort did go through some rather beautiful meadows and woods. There were bushes that looked very like white lilacs, with a strong scent – sometimes the road was lined with these and the scent was wonderful. There were masses of flowers, ranging from tall blueish ones through to pink flowers tucked away in long grass. For a change we’ll have a picture, as pic of the day, of one of these scented bushes.

Just after Omo Ranch, product placement I guess, we met two cyclists – Nikki and Josh who were doing the transam through to Washington DC. They were both blogging their trip which offers tremendous opportunities of comparison. Ah, thank goodness Guy isn’t writing his own blog! Anyway, the blogs are at and

In Placerville we decided to take a motel if we could find a cheap one, which we have done. We are trying to get used to the warmth – after some time when the threat of snow seemed a more relevant question. Fortunately the motel provides, via a percolator in our room, a large ocean of tea and we are finally making progress at finishing all the books we have set ourselves during the bike ride. A gentle Red Nectar ale has helped us digest the heap of tofu, mushrooms and tomatoes in tacos that we’ve just eaten. The National 9 Motel has charged us about 50 dollars for a spacious room with the bikes tucked away inside the room, and a continental breakfast promised. Not so bad at all, especially after paying $33 plus 50c a shower at last night’s campsite.

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