Day 5 – Prineville to Dayville

Sat 5th June 2010

We left the motel at 6:50am and it was sunny with no rain forecast. A headwind for the first hour or so slowed us down and we were gradually climbing on our way up to Ochoco pass at 4,720ft. The scenery was spectacular and quite varied ranging from heavy wooded area to mountains and wide open spaces. The roads here are all excellent. They are wide with a safe shoulder to ride on and the tarmac is ultra smooth – perfect.

Highway 26

Great views from Highway 26

At the summit of Ochoco pass it was nice and warm, a complete contrast to the snow we had at Santaim Pass which is at the same altitude. The ride down the other side was a blast reaching speeds of 40mph, it makes the slog to the top well worth it. We had another long climb up to Keys Creek Pass at 4,357ft and from there it was mostly downhill to Dayville.

Ochoco Pass

Ochoco Pass

Downhill sign

More of these please

All in all it’s been a good day and it was great to ride without wearing waterproofs. The sun was very hot and it was also humid which meant that we drank more water and by the time we had reached Dayville we were both out of water. We must make sure that we keep well stocked up with food and water as there is nothing but wilderness between the towns and they are a long way apart.

Now, from the comments I see that you are all concerned about Chris’s knee. We are feeling more confident about his knee now as he has managed to cycle with it for the past 3 days over the Cascade Mountains and Blue Mountains. I think he will be okay to carry on and apart from that is in good spirts.

Dave - another TransAmerica cyclist

As I was cycling along today I was trying to think of what I could write in today’s blog when Chris came to my rescue with more good material. For the first time Chris is riding with clipless pedals and to be fair he’s not quite got used to them. While climbing up to Keys Creek Pass Chris discovered that it’s very important to unclip the shoes from the pedals before you stop the bike. As Chris had not been practising balancing a stationary bike he now has a slightly sore elbow. The good news is that it is taking his mind off the sore knee. Unfortunately I did not witness the incident so another photo opportunity was lost.

Grazed elbow

"******* pedals"

Our planned stop today was in Dayville but we have been put in touch with Bob & Judy Reed who live near John Day. We arranged with them to stay for a couple of nights and take a rest day on Sunday with them. We are both feeling somewhat fatigued after nearly 500 miles in 5 days, it’s been a tough start to the ride. A day off will be good for Chris’s knee.

Dayville Store

Dayville grocery store - Been here as a store for 104yrs

It was not possible to reach Bob & Judy’s house as it was 40miles past Dayville near John Day so Bob came out and picked us up after we had cycled 98miles. We put the bikes in the back of Bob’s 7.3litre truck and rode back to their lovely house situated in the mountains. We had a great evening talking to Bob & Judy and their friends Mike & Judy. We ate buffalo burgers (very tasty) and drank beer and felt very relaxed and comfortable. To give an idea of how remote this part is Bob & Judy have to drive 200miles to do a large shop i.e. anything more than the usual day to day items.


Bob (left) and Mike pick us up 10miles east of Dayville

Daily Mileage – 98.1 miles

Time in Saddle – 9 hrs 16 mins

Total Climbing – 4,618 ft


  1. Enjoy your day off, you,ve definitely earned it, what some lovely people your meeting, look after your knee and elbow, take care be safe, love to you both xxx

  2. Better!

  3. Hello Penny sorry to hear your poor old body is going through it but a bit of advice is that its not wise to elbow the tarmac ! I told you those technical pedals might be too much for you ! We both look forward to reading Alan’s daily blog, keep it up Al its really amusing. Just to let you know Penny the cabbage plants you gave me are surviving better than you !!!! Enjoy your rest day lads,stay safe but keep sharing those funny moments

  4. Dad!
    Them shoes are causing more trouble than good aren’t they! Hopefully by the end of the ride you will have figured out how to use them! He he
    pleased to hear you are soldiering on with your knee and are managing some hard climbs!! I knew you would anyway!!
    You have determination like no one else!!

    Well done to you both and great blogs alan

    Love you

  5. Hey Dad, Chris.

    Firstly, you made a typo :P ” It wa not possible to reach Bob & Judy’s house ”

    Good to hear you made it safely! Keep on going and Im going to be advertising your website at school! :)

    Chris, Ive fallen off with clips a few times :P

  6. Chris,If you take one pedal of your bike you will save both your knee and elbow!Enjoy the rest day.

  7. Our best to you on your tour, Chris and Al. It’ll be interesting following you. Your blog is great. My 55-year old step-son rode from Astoria to Fredericksburg, VA, two years ago, in about 90 days. It was fun following him. Enjoy it and be safe, Dick

  8. Hi Alan (& Chris),
    Sounds like you’re making great progress – well done guys!
    We like the sound of the beer and buffalo burgers best so far!!! Will promote your ride here in NZ!! Maybe round New Zealand can be your next trip???
    Stay safe, Craig, Helen & Jacob

  9. Hi Alan (& Chris),
    Sounds like you’re making good progress despite some minor set backs. I particularly like the sound of the beer and buffalo burgers so far!! Will promote your website in NZ – maybe you’ll do your next ride here??? (It would be a shorter one!!)
    Stay safe, Craig, Helen & Jacob

  10. Hehe, that must hurt landing on your knees and elbows all the time. At least it’s knocking the rough edges off you…… ouch! Hey it’s stopped raining over here but the temperature has plummeted to 17 deg for the rest of the week. Maybe you really do have the right idea after all! Just no going down any off-road steep rocky trails and only applying the front hand brake! Now that you’re over Ochoco Pass is it all free-wheeling downhill across to the east coast? Hit that first Bud yet? Best regards mate, Tone