Cumulative Miles - 1,730.0
Gillian, a Warm Showers host in Ordway, Colorado offers a unique perspective on hosting cyclists. She has property with lots of animals, trees, fencing and other areas that need constant attention to maintain. In exchange for letting cyclists stay at her place she only asks that you do 15-30 minutes of chores on the property. This could be feeding the animals, walking the dogs, pruning trees...whatever Gillian finds for you to do. My chore??? Put duct tape sticky side out on trees to trap the insects that are damaging the trees...pretty ingenious!
Meeting many more cyclists too including Sam and Dan from England. They are crossing the US from east to west.
Met Patrick from Wisconsin...Patrick is also crossing the country from east to west and is then going to go down the Pacific Coast.
I am so very close to entering Kansas! Going to be a lot flatter roads but very hot and greater distances between towns for food, water and other services.
Cumulative Miles - 1,619.6
I camped at an RV park at Royal Gorge, Colorado and although yet another series of storms came through it was really relaxing.
I left for my ride into Pueblo and this was my first clew that it was going to be a tough day. Enjoying a nice downhill run at about 35 MPH only to have to come to a complete stop for road construction! Really??? Then riding through the hot, sticky tar...yuck!
As the day went on the temperature went up, eventually hitting 100. I was a little over 2 miles from Pueblo and something that hasn't ever happened before happened...heat exhaustion! All of sudden I got very dizzy and had a difficult time focusing. I got off my bike, drank more water and tried to collect my thoughts. I sat there for about 30 minutes and tried to start again but it wasn't happening. I set my bike down and sat on pavement of a turn off road trying to get myself to where I could ride the final 2 1/2 miles. Then a truck pulled up and the gentleman (Chris) asked me if I was okay and I asked him if he had any cold water but he didn't. We talked for a few minutes then loaded my bike and gear into his truck and he drove me the final couple miles to a convenience store where I got something to drink and waited out another thunderstorm. I had already contacted a Warmshowers host and she agreed to host me for the night. I met Ellen at her house and she prepared a delicious salmon dinner and fresh veggies from her garden. WOW! did that ever hit the spot after the long, hot day. Ellen had a separate guest bedroom and bathroom that she let me stay in and it was lovely! I slept like a baby!
Thank you so much Chris for stopping to help me...I'm not sure what I would have done and to Ellen for inviting me into your home, the conversations and awesome dinner! Your cats were adorable too :)
I left Ellen's home about around 7:30 this morning and after a few miles I just didn't feel right so I decided to take a rest day and make sure I'm properly rested and hydrated for the next leg of my trip which will take me to Ordway, Colorado and ever closer to the Kansas state line. I've had a lot of people offer some great advice to deal with the heat and the long stretches between towns in the state.
The events of yesterday have helped better prepare me for the rest of my journey and once again shown me the true generosity and compassion of the people across America.
Cumulative Miles - 1,499.6
As Jimmy (far left) and I got ready to leave from Silverthorne, Co. we met up with this group that is doing the "Ride the Divide" and the really cool part is there is the grandfather, his son and his grandson all doing the ride together! Have an awesome ride guys!
As we left Silverthorne we got onto a gorgeous bike path that took us all the way to Breckenridge!
Jimmy was continuing on to Fairplay, Co. and I was going to stay in Breckenridge for the day. I stopped into the Blue River Bistro for lunch and was talking with my waitress (Tracy) about campsites or hotels in the area. I had checked online and the hotels were outrageously expensive and Tracy wasn't aware of any campsites in the immediate area. She said there was a hostel in town and she knew the owners telling me to feel free to let them know she suggested I call them. She got me the number and unfortunately they had rented out the last room about 30 minutes earlier. The skies were getting very dark and the thunderstorms were getting ready to roll in. I asked the lady at the hostel if she could recommend anywhere to call. She gave me the name of a small hotel about 3 or 4 miles back where I had come from earlier. I called and they had 1 room left at a substantially lower cost than in Breckenridge so I pedaled back and there just as the storm blew in. Thank you Tracy for all your help :)
The next morning I knew I would have a very challenging ride as I was going to have to reach Hoosier Pass the Continental Divide at 11,539' elevation!!!
When I got to the top there was a couple from Holland that were riding cross country (East to West) and when the gal saw me reach the top she started cheering for me! How cool is that???
They told me about an RV park with tent camping that they had stayed at in Fairplay, Co. and recommended I check it out. I briefly celebrated my victory over Hoosier Pass then enjoyed the awesome downhill ride into Fairplay where I set up camp for the night and decided to stay an extra night and took Sunday as a rest day. Next major city...Pueblo, Co. then onto Kansas!
Cumulative Miles - 1,373.9
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