Ride 2016 Day 22
This may end up being the shortest day of my ride, unless tomorrow’s forecasted rain keeps me completely off the bike. I had broke a planned 110 mile day into two days. Yesterday eliminated 66 of the miles. Today finished around 41. It needs to be said again – so far wind is worse than mountains. The wind was not very strong, but it was still coming from the wrong direction today.
I decided to take a road parallel to US 400 for a change of pace. On this Sunday morning, I saw about 6 vehicles over 16 miles. They were very slow miles. In spite of the flat terrain, I was only doing 10-12 mph.
At 22 miles, I didn’t need to eat, but I did need a break. I stopped at a gas staion for a cup of coffee. The Tasty Freeze across the street was still closed, so I couldn’t get an ice cream fix. I added an apple and granola bar from my bags to have with the cup of Joe. It was good to be off the bike, out of the wind and be a little warmer. It may have been 52 on the thermometer, but there was still a wind chill. Even more so when I was adding another 12 mph to the wind speed. My nose was the only thing that was running at full capacity.
I needed to head north for about 8 miles. This direction change had me going 15-17 mph. The wind still was not strong, but it was no longer my enemy. I’d be happy if it played Switzerland and just remained neutral. The break in my fight against the wind must have strengthened me as I made a final turn east against the wind. I was riding faster than before and even got above 20 mph on a long downhill.
I had a warm showers host lined up, but it was not far past noon when I was at the edge of the city. I stopped for a sandwich and did some route planning to give my hosts a little more of their Sunday. Alan greeted me from his garage as I came up his driveway. He had half a dozen bikes hanging from the rafters, including 2 tandems. He and his wife, Renee had done the adventure cycling transcontinental route together on a tandem in 2014, just after he retired from a career in corporate law. We had a lot of bike, retirement, and other life stories to trade. As I write this, I am on my bed with one of Renee’s home made quilts. I am going to sleep well tonight, even if I didn’t ride very far.
My hosts have been wonderful. The weather tomorrow has a high probability of rain most of the day. They have offered to let me stay an extra day if needed. I would really like to get some miles down tomorrow, but I don’t like the idea of riding in the rain again. With my luck, the wind would not only be in my face again, it would also be full of water. I’ll just have to play it by ear. After all, it’s all part of the adventure!
The Lone Rider