As we'd prepared our dinner at Richardson campground near Garberville, Ned and Charlotte turned up, their orange vests irredescent in the twilight. We had plenty of food and they had none, so we happily shared some spaghetti bolognaise with them and they ate it with stale bread.
We hadn't seen them for a couple of days so we caught up on who'd done what since we'd last been together. As it grew dark, Jodie arrived too... a pattern was emerging...
We had a big day ahead of us - a mountain to cross and many smaller hills too - before we made it back to the coast. One stretch was 43km without anywhere to buy food... we needed to be prepared!
The mountain was long (about 700m high) but the gradient was good and we felt refreshed after our rest day. I actually enjoyed the climb and flying down was one of the best experiences of the trip! So beautiful through the redwoods, winding down the mountain... Even though the mountains were tough, the downhill sections always made them worthwhile. And riding with friends made the pain more bearable.
Back on the coast we met a group of American cyclists; touring the coast without their bags - they would take it in turns to drive the van with all the gear. Boy were we jealous! They rode fast and Sam jumped on the back of the group until the small town of Westport.
Our group decided to push on from here to the state campground just north of Fort Bragg... We set up camp with the deer, as far away from the noisy group of school kids as possible.