As joe mentioned before, we camped with Beto and I made the 3 of us dinner. We probably talked for an hour and just before we got into our tents I found out it was Beto’s 25th birthday. I was kicking myself thinking if I only knew that earlier I would have done something for him! He’s traveling alone and had no one to celebrate with him. With all of that being said, I woke up at 6am. Bundled up and biked to the nearest grocery store. I got Beto some birthday cupcakes and all of us breakfast. This is something my mom would totally do 🙂
We said our goodbyes and headed to Santa Barbara. We visited SB last year around thanksgiving and couldn’t wait to check out the cute little town again! Well we passed it somehow haha we thought our maps took us straight through, but I guess it took us through back neighborhoods and before we knew it…we had already passed downtown.
Just past Santa Barbara is University of California Santa Barbara. Really cool campus! They have a really nice bike path and a TON of bikes. Joe and I stopped at Coffee Collaborative and talked with the barista for a while. She ended up giving us free coffee! After like 2 hours we decided we should probably get on the road. We were on the highway for the rest of the day. Lots of traffic, but the views were amazing! Green, velvety, rolling hills along the coast with very blue water underneath. We were about 1,000ft from our destination (Refugio State Park) and I got my first flat. I was surprised I didn’t get one sooner from the rough highway shoulder!
We pulled up to the campsite and it was FULL – reservations only. BUT they had a hiker biker spot for $10/ person! Not only did we get a spot, but we had a better view than most sites. We were right on the ocean! As we pulled up we saw another tourist, Meiyi, setting up her tent. She thought we were professionals 😛 No, were just pretty organized with our bags and have setting up camp down to a science. I want to make a short video soon to show how we set up and take down camp everyday! Speaking of, Meiyi has an awesome video to show a little bit of traveling by bike. Check it out -> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C2_wHQ6wBuM
We were so happy to be at Refugio and not biking. The winds were CRANKING. Just as they have been every afternoon. That’s why everyone bikes the coast from North to South…supposedly the winds are always coming out of the North. Oh well, hopefully we get lucky 😛
Woke up to the beautiful ocean and surfers already out in the water. There’s a little point break at Refugio state park. Some people come here to camp and surf all day! Sounds like a great family weekend to me! Anyways our plan for the day was to make it past Lompoc and camp in between Lompoc and Guadalupe. After speaking with a nice guy at the campground it sounded like Lompoc had nothing but wetlands. I wasn’t looking forward to a full day of biking with possibly no water spots and no town to see.
We knew we had a good climb to start the day, but after that should be easy. We started the day riding on interstate 101 again but were quickly off the busy road and back on the 1 after climbing through a small tunnel. The hills have definitely begun and although our legs are getting back into shape the climbs are a welcome challenge. We coasted into Lompoc, which was surprisingly a large town with any services a bike tourist could ask for despite what our friend at the campsite had told us. We did some quick shopping, got a mandatory root beer float & snow cone, and made a delicious lunch.
After town we approached our second climb for the day, this time on a very full stomach. I thought I made a great lunch…burrito with salsa, parsley, lime, and black bean. However biking on a full stomach AND up a hill is a horrible combination haha and even though that was difficult for me, the climb was the easy part of the afternoon. After the decent we encountered a stiff 20 knot headwind for the remainder of our ride. It was grueling to say the least and Ill just leave it at that. We were happy to finally make it into Guadalupe where we found a fire station that was willing to let us shower and camp out back!