|Bike path by the Columbia|
A reason for my lingering in the gorge was that the region between Troutdale and the Pacific coast tends to be cool and cloudy with lots of rain. That's how it was today except that the rain was only drizzle and lasted only an hour or so towards the end of the stage.
|PDX airport from the bike path|
The first half of today's 76 km ride consisted in getting to the far side of Portland, the city I will fly out of when all is done. Portland is centred on the Willamette River not the Columbia, so I was able to skirt around its northern edge by sticking close to the Columbia, squeezing between it and the airport on a route that was sometimes bike path and sometimes shoulder. I worked my way across the city from one river to the other, on bike lanes most of the way, and crossed the Willamette by St John's Bridge.
At the far end of the bridge, I saw the first road sign for Astoria, my destination, and got on the shoulder of US 30, which will take me there. The flat road turned inland, out of sight of the Columbia, although parallel to it. I stopped for second breakfast at the first place I saw then cycled on in the drizzle on the good quality shoulder, my camera packed away.