DAY 93 (9/11/05): Florence to Coos Bay, OR 63.1 mi.  The rain that began during
our attempted campfire continued throughout the night.  This morning, many of 
our fellow cyclists' tents were totally flooded.  Three cheers for my Northface
Roadrunner2, which stayed totally dry inside, as it has through every storm so
far.  I also have to credit a little trick I learned from Tobias in New Zealan
d--always set up your tent on the highest ground in your campsite.  It's really
amazing how much those few inches matter, as the Canadian couple who were 10 y
ds away but 5 inches below me woke up in a lake in the middle of the night.  We
packed up our wet tents and rode through more of the Oregon dunes to Reedsport
, where we stopped for hot beverages at one of the hundreds of drive-thru espre
sso booths that litter this area.  We then rode towards Coos Bay, stopping at a
roadside picnic area when the sun came out to dry our gear.  When we entered C
oos Bay, we stopped at a big tourist map and Tobias saw that there were a few
shopping areas in town that he wanted to 
visit.  So, we made a rather ill-fated detour through town during which we clim
bed every steep hill we could find without seeing a single shop with good windo
w displays for Tobias to look at.  After our shopping adventure, we rode to Sun
set Bay state park where we met up with most of the same cast of characters as 
last night, all of whom had managed to get their gear dry one way or another du
ring the day.

DAY 94 (9/12/05): Rest Day, Coos Bay, OR.  This morning, we made a few phone ca
lls and were able to secure a rental car in Coos Bay, thereby enabling us to em
bark on the Tobias-drives-Dena-drinks winery tour of the Umpqua Valley in south
ern Oregon.  After leaving our gear at a motel, we picked up the car and drove 
about 70 mi inland, allowing us to see a totally different side of Oregon--stee
p green mountains, rushing rivers, and, of course, sunny valleys full of grapes
.  The first winery we visited, Girardet, was founded by an eccentric Swiss ex-
pat whose focus is on growing unusual varieties of grape.  When we arrived at t
he winery the owner (in his mid 60's) was out attending to the vines wearing a 
very authentic-looking straw hat.  The wine we liked the best there was the Mar
achel Foch, which the guy raved about in a thick French accent.  After that, we
visited two less-impressive wineries that made good but not exceptional wines,
focusing on Pinot Noir, for which this region is famous.  Finally, we visited
the Hillcrest winery, which is run by a 
young husband and wife team..  Their focus is on using traditional techniques, 
so they don't irrigate their vineyards and use vines that are in some cases 40 
years old.  Because these techniques reduce the yield from the vines, these wer
e the most expensive wines that we tried.  Howecer, they were absolutely outsta
nding.   Tobias, who is a serious wine snob, even enjoyed the Sauvignon Blanc (
although as a rule he never drinks white), and loved one of the Cabernet Sauvig
nons so much that he asked about the cost of shipping a case to Germany.  Becau
se of the farming techniques he uses, the owner was able to let us taste the di
fference between two years of wine from the same vineyards, with one year being
an El Nino year.  So, for those who haven't yet had a chance to see what all t
he fuss is about with wines, make the trip to Hillcrest and you'll see.  It see
ms like American wineries are under the same pressure as the rest of the food
industry to produce a consistent 
product with mass-market appeal, and that prevents people from taking the risks
necessary to make a truly exceptional product.

DAY 95 (9/13/05): Coos Bay to Port Orford, OR 64.5 mi.  After returning or litt
le Dodge Neon, we got back on our bikes and proceded through the exceptionally 
steep and hilly Seven Devil's road south of Coos Bay.  We began to question the
wisdom of purchasing 3 bottles of wine during our motorized travels yesterday.
 Some of the hills were even high enough that we got above the fog layer at th
e tops and saw the sun.  After the hills we got back down to the beach again, w
here we saw the body of a dead whale that had washed ashore.  It was still quit
e foggy, though, so we didn't linger too much along the water.  Finally, the su
n came out just as we arrived in Port Orford so we did get some amazing views o
f sea stacks and the ocean on our way to Humbug Mountain state park.  Having le
arned our lesson about carrying extra weight in the form of wine, we consumed t
wo of the three bottles of wine that we bought yesterday, and an enjoyable even
ing was had by all.

DAY 96 (9/14/05): Port Orford to Gold Beach, OR 27.5 mi.  We had a short day to
day since Tobias wasn't feeling well.  He attributed his upset stomach to a gla
ss of cold water that he drank with breakfast, and insisted that it had nothing
to do with the large volume of wine that we had last night.  In the interest o
f maintaining team harmony, I have to withhold my opinion as to the probable ca
use.  In any event, we stayed at a nice little RV park in Gold Beach and did ou
r laundry.  After the sun went down the temperature plunged into the 40's, forc
ing a hasty retreat into our sleeping bags.