After cycling more than 2,000 miles from Canada to Mexico along the USA’s Pacific Coast Highway, we’ve finally reached the finish line.
We pedalled up to the Mexican border at San Ysidro feeling a concoction of elation, relief, pride and sadness that this incredible adventure is now over.
As finish lines go, it was a little surreal. We were stood still amid a river of bodies and blur of freeway traffic travelling through a border patrolled by tough looking men and women with guns.
Hubrdeds of people hurriedly walked past us with purpose, each on a journey of their own but for the first time in a long time, we weren’t on one. Our journey had ended.
It was the end of a 50 mile ride that began that morning at San Elijo State Beach. My (James) excitement at starting our last day was tempered by Pierre’s grogginess at getting very little sleep due to a punctured air mattress.
A sharp caffeine intake soon perked him up and we found ourselves gliding along the Pacific coast, powering up the last hills of our journey as if they weren’t there. We are both now fitter than we have ever been thanks to this bike ride and our confidence has grown because of it. We’ve also lost so much weight that our clothes don’t fit us anymore.
We cycled the length of Mission Beach along its bike path and pedalled into sun-drenched San Diego, past turquoise marina waters, alongside aircraft carriers on the city harbour front and through industrial ship yards further south.
On leaving San Diego we wound our way through a maze of residential streets for miles before reaching bustling San Ysidro. Compared to the shining city we had just left, it looked shabby but I liked the energy of the busy border town and its Mexican feel.
And then, a simple left turn at a set of traffic lights heralded the end of our two month, 2,000 mile cycling adventure. There was Mexico in front of us. A giant national flag waved majestically in the wind, behind which the city of Tijuana sprawled in numerous shades of brown as far as the eye could see. We had reached the end. Our adventure was over.