We left the coastline and cruised through some typical California landscapes.

Here I cross a bridge as we left Petrolia, where we stopped for a late lunch. We refueled on sandwiches at a diner.

The road follows the Mattole River and the scenery was quite nice.

We found ourselves riding more and more in deep shadow. The day was definitely on the wane and we still had many miles to go.

I loved the rawness of the California countryside.

This one lane bridge over the Mattole River marks the end of the gently rolling terrain and the beginning of the climb up to Panther Gap.

The lazy, gently flowing water seemed seemed to encourage us to pause, to linger, but we felt the daylight ticking away.

The planks made a pleasant noise as I rode across them. Now we moved on to the longest climb of the day.