Monday, March 16, 2009

Weather and Bridges

Craziest day ever! But let me start from the beginning.

This morning we had a nice send off ceremony at OHSU. Three Doctors/Researchers told us a little about what they do for Ataxia. We heard from Dr. Maylie and Dr. Nutt both from OHSU and we heard from Dr. Scutt who is the Medical director for the National Ataxia Foundation. All three gentlemen gave very nice talks about what they do and all three stressed how important it is to have funds from groups like ours to help get research off the ground.

Gathered outside the building, here is the whole team:

We then took off through downtown Portland and once again it became apparent how many people we had on this trip. It was pretty fun to travel through downtown turning heads as a huge, strong team.

When we got out of town, we hit the highway and it immediately started pouring rain. It started getting a bit miserable but as soon as my clothes soaked through, my body heat warmed the water that was next to my skin and I started warming up. We had heavy rain, light rain, sunshine and rolling hills until lunch. Lunch was pretty sunny and we had some fun:

After lunch we ran into more ridiculous weather...much more rain...and hail for about 5 minutes. We crossed some railroad tracks and 3 of our teammates fell pretty hard at the tracks, one requiring minor medical attention but our SAG team took care of business and everything is fine.

At mile 51 we crossed the Louis and Clark Bridge form Oregon to the state of Washington...Everyone had been talking about this bridge and how scary it would be...the bridge lived up to the hype. The Bridge was about 2 miles long and it had a small bike lane on the shoulder. It was pretty darn steep on either side so it was a slow climb followed by a screaming down hill. We crossed the bridge in a group of four: Me, Mike Bryant, Uncle Steve and Sean Roberson. When we reached the halfway point of the bridge (the highest spot) the rain began to turn very heavy and was between rain and snow, the wind was blowing very hard and the bridge began to sway a bit. The trucks to our left were causing the guard rail to rattle as if it were going to fall off. Then we began our descent. We landed on solid ground as soon as possible and as soon as we got off the bridge, the sun came out...Mother Nature was playing tricks on us.

We are all safe and sound in our hotel in Kelso. I believe we got the GPS working so you can track our progress daily from the link directly above this post. WE're on our way. One down three to go!

Check out the local news coverage from News 10!

This one goes out to our friends in Martinez, CA. Angela and Ricky are kicking butt. Thanks for the support! See you soon!


Andy and Linda Johnson said...

Unbelievable! What a mental and physical challenge! That bridge sounds like a memory ... I'll leave it at that!

Kyle, don't forget to have guest bloggers. It's so funny to read other perspectives of the same journey! (We're keeping up with Paul's and Mary's.)

Dearest Angela ... Last year you only wanted to do a 1/2 day ... this year with your husband you're, "Kicking Butt!" ... You're obviously great for each other!
Andy and I must have been holding you back! You go girl!

Spinner said...

New's clip look GREAT - Kyle the camera likes you & you do well telling your story! Sounds like the first day was ... interesting. (if it was to fun & easy everybody would do it.) Have a GREAT rest of the ride - if it helps, my weather is warm & dry. I miss you all! God Bless

Dynah said...

The bridge sounds terrifying!! Hope you have more stable weather today. See you soon!

Kristy said...

Thinking of all of you! Shout out to Ang and Ricky sending good warm thoughts of sun and warmth and STAMINA!!! Roll on!! Oh and I do wish I was was there rain and all!

barney von barnistein said...

total barneys

Anonymous said...

Angela and Ricky,

I have so much admiration for you! Looks cold and wet but your not giving up. I can't wait to hear all the details.

Take care of yourselves and each other,