Each afternoon I get notifications on my phone for severe thunderstorms and lightening. That's because the monsoon season is in full force in Colorado and it creates a unique challenge when it comes to shelter. The heavy winds, lightening, rain and hail make pitching a tent difficult at best and I need to plan my daily ride so I arrive at my destination by early afternoon before the storms begin forming. Another thing I have to consider when camping is the wildlife and there are plenty of warnings about that as well! These were posted at a campground I went by yesterday.
That being said, it is absolutely gorgeous in Colorado! The mountains, lakes and rivers are so peaceful and a joy to be around!
I met Jimmy in Riverside, Wyoming and we've been in touch each day since. We usually have the same destination for the day and its been great talking about the ride each day. Jimmy started in Jackson, Wyoming and it probably going to stop in Pueblo. His wife is following him in their RV and drives ahead to the day's destination to find the RV park they will reside at for the evening.
Cumulative Miles - 1,325.6
It was a long ride on the interstate to get to Rawlins, Wyoming but now that I'm back on the official TransAM route, I'm seeing many more cyclists!
In Saratoga, Wyoming I stayed at a Warmshowers host site. Karim was awesome, we talked for hours! Thank you so much Karim for inviting me into your home!
The last 50 miles or so through Wyoming gave me a taste for what I can expect as I continued into Bob's home state of Colorado. The passes are steep and long and weather is unpredictable. The next goal is Breckenridge, Colorado and on to Hoosier pass which is the highest point of the entire ride at 11,542'.
Cumulative Miles - 1,224.5
Having ridden 145 miles on interstate 80 since getting into Wyoming it seems like the entire state is going by in a flash! No real time or nerves to stop on the interstate to take photos but did manage to get a few before getting on the interstate.
This was a long, hot day and when I came across a rest area with shade, I was there! Though I don't recall where "there" was :)
I crossed the Continental Divide twice in one day!
I arrived in Rawlins, Wyoming Friday afternoon and took Saturday as a rest day.
Sunday I will be heading out for Saratoga, Wyoming then it looks like I'm about 44 miles from the Colorado state line. This is where it will really get tough! Hoosier Pass is 11,542' and is the highest point of the entire ride! Hope to see family while in Colorado :)
Cumulative Miles - 1,155.7
As I entered into the town of Cokeville, Wyoming I rolled into a Flying J truck stop, went in to get something to eat and fill my water bottles. When I came out there was a gentleman sitting at the only table. I asked if he would mind me joining him and he said not at all. His name was Don and he is a long haul trucker. He told me about his career and about a heart attack he suffered years ago. After treatment and modifying his diet he was able to return to his job as a long haul trucker. We chatted about my bike ride and he commented that he should get a bike as it would be good exercise for him. He was heading to Portland and stopped so he could do his laundry and rest a little bit. After about a 30 minute conversation he stood up to go get his laundry and then pulled his wallet out and handed me a $20.00 bill telling me that he wanted to support me on my journey!!! Wow!! So many incredible people out there! Thank you Don!
I'm now in route to Rawlins, Wyoming to rejoin the TransAM trail. I took US Highway 30 until about 3 miles outside of Little America, Wyoming when the road ended and I was forced to get onto Interstate 80. This is not what I was expecting or planning. I rode as fast as I possibly could to get to the exit for Little America. I asked one of the ladies at the front desk if there are any other options for east bound travel other than the interstate and she said there really isn't. I checked online to see if I can legally ride on the interstate and it appears that I can plus I checked with the Wyoming Highway Patrol and they said it's fine so long as I stay as far to the right shoulder as possible and maintain safe riding practices. He didn't recommend riding the interstate at night which I would never do. So the next 144 miles will be on the interstate...wish me luck!
I've officially passed the 1,000 mile mark!
Miles to date 1,040.1
Spent the July 4th holiday in Pocatello and like most of the west it was HOT! Having logged over 800 miles on the ride so far I contacted a local bike shop in Pocatello (Barrie's Ski and Sports) and arranged to get Bobnick a tuneup before heading out Wednesday.
While waiting for Adam to complete the tuneup I looked around the shop and struck up a conversation with a gentleman that was also getting work done on his bike. Ralph is 82 and still rides his bike on a regular basis. We had a great conversation and he also gave me some tips for getting back onto highway 30.
While on my way to Lava Hot Springs, Idaho I came upon a gentleman on a 4 Wheeler that was stopped on the shoulder. He had ran out of gas and was waiting for his wife to bring him some. His name is Ken and he is also a cyclist from the local area. He asked if I was planning to stay in Lava Hot Springs that evening and I told him probably so. He told me that he and his wife were going out of town but I was welcome to pitch my tent on his property if I wanted to. He gave me his address and told me he really hoped I would stop by. His wife arrived with gas for his 4 Wheeler and he also led me to a different road to get into town so I could stay off the busy highway.
I decided to take Ken up on his generous offer and WOW what a beautiful place it was! Ken and his wife were just leaving as I came up the road to their property. The generosity and kind hearts of people is incredible. They said I could pitch my tent anywhere including on the patio. There were some gusty winds moving through so that's what I ended up doing.
The next morning I headed out to Soda Springs and am now in Montpelier, Idaho.
I should be crossing into the state of Wyoming on Saturday!
Miles over the past 3 days - 104.9
Cumulative Miles - 913.1
Haven't posted to the blog in a few days because wifi was hard to find so this will be a longer post covering the past 3 days. It's started to get really hot but that doesn't take away from the beauty and peacefulness along the ride!
A lot of holiday travelers on the interstate but hardly any traffic on the frontage road to Burley, Idaho!
Miles today - 42.0
Cumulative Miles - 716.5
As I rolled into Rupert, Idaho I took a break at a city park to relax a little because I couldn't go on due to a train on the tracks that was going nowhere fast. I just love the history of all the small towns I'm going through!
The next 35 miles or so were so peaceful! Long rolling hills and only saw 4 cars along the entire 35 mile stretch!
As I got closer to American Falls I came upon dirt roads going through some wind farms. Really incredible to see these close up!
It was in the mid 90's and I wasn't sure where I would be sleeping that night. I did a search for campgrounds and found Indian Springs RV and Campground in American Falls. I called and asked if they had any tent sites available for the night and they said they did but the office would be closing at 6:00. It was about 4:30 and I was still 15 miles out of American Falls. Not sure of the terrain ahead I didn't know if I would make it by 6:00. I told them I would call them back at 5:30 and let them know where I was at. Unfortunately, Google maps took me way off course and there was no way I would make it by 6:00. They said the office would be closed but just knock on the door and they would assist me. I rolled in about 6:45 and they were awesome! Offered me water and although they had closed down the kitchen they said they had some incredible cookie ice cream sandwiches and it was HEAVEN!!! I was beat, hot and ready to relax and this was the perfect place to do that!
Miles Today - 60.4
Cumulative Miles - 776.9
My next destination was Pocatello, Idaho. On the way I came across this facility...a sure sign I'm in Idaho but never knew there were special potatoes for chips!
The temps are really climbing, all my electronics need to be charged and I was really wanting (and needing) a nice relaxing shower! I found a cheap hotel with wifi and decided to stay put for the July 4th holiday! I'm working on mapping out the next section of my ride which will take me into Wyoming!
Miles today - 31.3
Cumulative Miles - 808.20
Enjoyed a nice, relaxing ride from Bliss, Idaho to Twin Falls, Idaho. Special thanks to Dave, one of my blog readers for recommending this route! It was gorgeous and I really like Hagerman a lot. Good old small town America feel to it and when I stopped off at a local coffee shop it really brought that feeling home. Natasha was so pleasant and fun to talk to plus she has a fantastic outlook on life...thanks Natasha!
After my "liquid determination" I was spoiled by incredible scenery for much of the ride!
One thing about Idaho there are so many rest areas on the back-roads. Took a break and made some adjustments to Bobnick.
Miles Today - 48.4
Cumulative Miles - 674.4
After a day of thunderstorms, heat and heavy winds, today was a day that I was able to enjoy the wind at my back for much of the day!
It was so peaceful riding through Idaho farm country! Waving to the farmers as they worked their fields, the young kids riding 4 wheeler's giving me a thumbs up! I was originally going to stop in Hammett where this cute "guard kitty" kept an eye on the entrance of the only convenience store in town.
After some snacks and water I decided to keep going and headed out for Bliss, Idaho. I've driven I-84 so many times but took old highway 30 and it was beautiful! Amazing what you see when you get off the interstate highways! It added about 9 miles compared to the interstate but it was so worth it!
Rolling into Bliss I was really tired and sore. When I stopped and checked my mileage for the day I understood why! I had gone 71.8 miles which was my single greatest mileage day so far!
Miles Today - 71.8
Cumulative Miles - 626.00
After a break in Boise to see Nick, visit friends and rest up, I'm back on the road! The first target destination was Grand View, Idaho. At the recommendation of one of my blog readers, I took Idaho Highway 78 going through Murphy, Idaho. It was very hot and a relentless head wind made this 45 mile day seem much longer.
I made it into town and was sitting outside a local store when I noticed a cyclist coming up the road towards the store. It was the only cyclist I saw the entire day. He pulled in and we introduced ourselves...his name is Brian from Jackson, Wyoming and is riding to Washington State then across the northern tier to Maine. About 5,000 miles!
A severe thunderstorm alert had come across my phone so I contacted a hotel in town where I stayed that night but with the conditions in the room I think I would have rather taken the risk of being struck by lightening!!! That said, it was a pretty intense storm that ignited several fires in the area.
Miles Today - 45.5
Cumulative Miles - 554.2
After leaving Unity, Oregon I rode 66.4 miles to Vale, Oregon. There were some moderate climbs but much of it was flat or downhill so the miles seemed to go by quickly. This brought my cumulative miles to 448.10. I stayed overnight in Vale and the next morning had a wonderful conversation and coffee with 2 lovely ladies (Carol and Linda) at a local coffee shop.
My goal was to make it to my hometown that afternoon which would mean a day of about 60 miles. Knowing the communities I was in helped to make the distance between towns seem shorter. When I came across this in Nyssa, Oregon I knew I was getting close...lol!
Then I came up to the Snake River and I could see the welcome to Idaho sign on the other side...yay!
It felt so great riding into my homestate of Idaho! I've been on this road so many times in a car and while on my bike I was seeing things I probably had driven right past on numerous occasions including this...an actual drive in movie theater still in operation!
I rolled into Meridian, Idaho around 4:00 and rode to my bosses house to pick up my vehicle and headed home for a couple days of rest and visiting! Nick and I were able to hang out and have lunch...he is so excited about his new job at Rock Creek Shooting and is absolutely loving it! Thank you Phil and Rex for bringing Nick on to help at your incredible new facility!
I stopped into my workplace and visited with some of my co-workers which was awesome! Sorry I missed some of you :(
I've already ran out of water twice so I got 2 more bottle cages and 3 insulated bottles to keep the water cooler longer. Getting rid of gear I don't need and checking over Bobnick. I'll be heading out across Idaho early Sunday morning in route to Breckenridge, Colorado...my brother's home state.
Miles Today - 60.6
Cumulative Miles - 508.7