50.42 Miles / 1168.41 Total Miles
1982 Ft. of Climbing / 53,028 Total Ft. of Climbing
The bed I slept in, last night, was so comfortable, I hated to wake up this morning. Ed and I negotiated a 6 AM departure, today, so we were up at 4:30. Believe it or not, it takes that long to get ready, fed and out the door, when we’re not camping. The Hills know exactly what cyclists need in the morning. Linda had laid out cereal, muffins, bananas, hard boiled eggs, milk, orange juice, sandwich fixings and cookies, so we could prepare breakfast and pack a lunch, this morning. Then, Kevin helped us load our bikes and gear into the back of his pickup truck and drove us back to the road.
Before we even got on our bikes, Gala, Kevin’s wife, drove up with one of those plastic bar of soap travel boxes. It wasn’t mine or Ed’s, so she went after Dan, who had already started down the road. Who would be so nice as to drive a few miles to make sure you have the slivers of soap you left behind? A ways down the road at about the 15 mile point, there was a car parked on the right side of the road, joined by a car on the left. And a fella was getting out of the car on the right walking back and forth to the car on the left as we came speeding up on a downhill. We hollered out to make sure he saw us, so he didn’t walk into us, and as we blew between the 2 cars, we noticed that it was Kevin! He held out the lid to something like a Gatorade bottle and wanted to make sure it wasn’t one of ours. We were going so fast, I don’t think there was even time to say a word as we flew by him. I think he caught that it wasn’t ours. Can you believe he drove 30 miles round trip, in case we left a lid behind? That is above and beyond going the extra mile. I will never forget the kindness and hospitality of the Hill family.
The terrain of the day was just like the terrain yesterday. Hills, hills and more hills–from start to finish; dry prairie grass and sagebrush; and wind, that our weather app said was 20 mph. Actually the wind is where things were different. It started as a gusty quartering tailwind, then turned to a full on cross wind from the left, then went back and forth from being a crosswind and a quartering headwind. And for the last mile or so of the day, we had a full on headwind. At times, my DaBrim acted as a sail. I caught the quartering tail winds with it, and I could watch my speed pop up .5-2 mph. Nice! But it was also pulling my head up and to the side. By the end of the day, I was a little tired of having my head jerked around by the wind. And while we’re on the topic of the wind, it contributed to a near death incident for me.
As we were riding along, we noticed another cyclist coming from the other direction, and conveniently, there happened to be pullouts on both sides of the road at the point we were going to meet up with him; As we all slowed down to cross the road and talk, the pilot vehicle for one half of a triple wide manufactured home flew by, followed by half of the home, which was so wide that it took up most of the road. The wash from that massive load, in conjunction with whatever the wind was doing at the time, pulled me toward the center of the road and sucked me down to the ground in the traffic lane. But wait. The other half of the triple wide was right behind the first half, and I was now laying in the road with my bike on top of me. The driver appeared to be coming right at me, so I raised my hands to attempt to signal to him, because I couldn’t move out of the way fast enough. He may have changed his course slightly, to miss me, but he came awfully close to me. Ed was behind me, so he saw everything that happened, while dealing with the impact of the same wash and wind, which almost blew him off the road. He said that the driver of the second half of the home was on his radio, when he passed by me, and he’s pretty sure the conversion went something like this:
Driver: Hey, a cyclist just fell down in the road right in front of me, and I almost hit her.
Boss: Whatever you do, don’t stop, and don’t acknowledge.
Amazingly (is that a word?) I wasn’t hurt, though later I did discover that my chain rings had cut through my leggings and scratched my right leg. I was still laying on the road, and there was traffic coming. Aided by a burst of adrenalin I hefted my 100+ lb bike up and off of me, got back on me feet and got out of the roadway. After mounting my bike, I headed over to talk to the cyclist, who was now stopped on the other side of the road–almost as if this happens all the time.
The westbound cyclist was a fella named Steve, from somewhere near Belfast, Maine, where he began his journey. He was traveling with just one small pannier, because his wife is driving along with a vehicle. She meets up with him for lunch and at the end of the day, but while he’s riding, she keeps herself busy checking out the scenery, sight seeing, hiking and doing whatever else interests her. She’s a good wife. We exchanged information and stories, and one thing Steve told us killed one of my dreams. For days, we have been hearing about the delicious milk shakes at the Sand Springs Store, and I have been looking forward to one of them. The store is just a few miles up the road, and, according to Steve, it was closed when he passed through there, just 20 minutes prior. This cannot be!
When we arrived in Sand Springs, the store looked closed, but I don’t give up on something like a legendary milk shake easily. I checked the door, and the store was OPEN!!!. At 8:30 AM, I ordered an Oreo shake, and it made for a super delicious second breakfast.
Before we were tipped off to yesterday’s B&B, our original plan was to ride 78 miles and camp behind the Sand Springs store. When we saw the store and facilities, we were so glad things worked out the way they did. It would have been windy and dusty, with no shade, back behind the store. Sure there was a shower and bathrooms, but the B&B was just so much more comfortable and homey.
We arrived in Jordan at 12:30, completely missing any heat the day dished out. You know the routine after that. I showered, ate lunch, napped, then started working on the blog.
Taking a break from the routine, I took a walk and found the town’s Veterans Memorial monument, and it was a little sad. Some towns just don’t have as much money as others to build monuments and memorials, and Jordan is one of those towns.