FURTHER THAN CHICAGO: day 22-27


Pueblo, CO to Florence, CO
44 miles
Left Pueblo in the rain.
After stopping by a bike shop in town for some new brake pads and a couple extra tubes.
Flat count,
Geoff: 3
Sarah: 0
Got our first taste of the Rockies right outside of Florence.
Stayed at the city park.
Cheese enchiladas and grilled cheese sandwiches.
Asleep before the sun.
Florence, CO to Fairplay, CO
87 miles
On the road before 7:30 am.
Pancake breakfast.
Climbed all day.
Crossed Current Creek Pass (elev. 9,500) approaching Hoosier Pass.
The last 20 miles left us caught in a rainstorm.
Then snowstorm.
Then snow/ lightning storm, complete with a snow-bow.
We limped into Fairplay (elev. 10,000 ft) at 9:30 pm, after almost 14 hours on the bike.
Western Inn Motel.
The hot tub closed at 9 pm.
The owner gave us the keys.
Coffee and Twizzlers.
Sleep.
Fairplay, CO to Silverthorne, CO
42 miles
Left after a weak continental breakfast to attack the Hoosier Pass (continental divide).
This is the highest point on our whole trip.
Air is thin.
I’ve almost used a whole tube of chapstick.
I blame it on the a-a-a-a-a-altitude.
In the last four miles of the pass I maintained 2.5 mph, out of the saddle.
Most people walk faster than 2.5 mph.
Crossed the pass amidst snow flurries.
The other side of the pass took us through resort towns like Breckenridge, where everything was closed for “mudd season”.
TIRED.
Silverthorne, CO to Hot Sulphur Springs, CO
60 miles
Continued our decsent.
Rainclouds litter the sky and always seem to follow us.
Mountains on one side, rapids on the other.
Got to Hot Sulphur Springs to find that a ragged resort “owns” all the naturally geothermic hot pools.
We instead froze in our tent for free next to the train tracks.
Asleep by 6 pm.
Becoming the norm.
Hot Sulphur Springs, CO to Walden, CO
62 miles
Mountains beginning to break up.
Mexican combination plate lunch.
20 miles, no shoulder.
Thanks.
Welcome to Walden, Colorado’s home of the moose sighting.
Laundry.
Dangerously tall swingsets.
Cold.
Walden, CO to Rawlins, WY
115 miles
Planned to do 70ish miles today.
Crossed the border early.
First 20 miles in just over an hour.
Wyoming looks like Colorado and Kansas combined.
Hills plus wind.
Be careful what you wish for.
Got into Saratoga, WY, our original stopping point for today.
Visited their natural hot pool.
123 degrees.
I made it ankle deep.
With no good promise of accomodations we decided to push on to Rawlins, 41 miles away.
At 4:30.
We made great time for the first half, then flipped the map to find that the second half had us on the interstate.
Thanks adventure cycling.
The rain starts.
The wind starts.
Average speed of 14 becomes 4.
Out of the saddle to stay moving.
Walk the bikes.
Exit the interstate at Sinclair, WY, the home of Sinclair Oil Refineries.
We roll up to the truck stop adjacent the interstate, lit by the glow of the refinery under the storm choked sky.
Too dark to read the map, I ask a few people with pickup trucks if thery’re heading towards Rawlins, our last 9 miles.
Maybe.
No luck.
We press on.
Pouring rain.
Freezing.
115 miles later, we’re leaving puddle footprints in the Days Inn lobby.
This trip is 100 percent about patience, and mine has a headwind.

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14 Comments

  1. Posted June 1, 2009 at 2:11 am | Permalink

    Another amazing post. Thanks for all the details, etc, man. Love what you guys are doing. I made a post on the brilliance, so sweaty, my new favorite blog. Ride safe, enjoy it, and keep going with the great blog posts!!!

  2. laurie
    Posted June 1, 2009 at 9:34 am | Permalink

    found your blog on the brilliance. love reading about your trip. so cool to see what each day brings for you. you’ll never forget it…but of course, you know that!
    thanks for sharing. safe journeys!

  3. nanny
    Posted June 1, 2009 at 10:55 am | Permalink

    Geoff and Sarah — do you have “names” for your bikes? I suggest: Endurance and Perseverance. Or, whatever. And, re the Wyoming landscape, a “mesa” is wider than it is high, and a “butte” is higher than it is wide. Suppose you could say that mesa in the distance sure is a beaut. (Pun intended) Anyway, don’t climb either one. Ride safe.

  4. Posted June 1, 2009 at 4:00 pm | Permalink

    “I blame it on the a-a-a-a-a-altitude.” HA!

  5. Posted June 1, 2009 at 6:25 pm | Permalink

    I now own all of your cds, sarahs knifes, and windchime.

  6. Sarah's Aunt Julie
    Posted June 1, 2009 at 7:37 pm | Permalink

    Please stop, eat 3 meals in a day, and have some fun! Even downhill, 115 miles in a day does not sound fun. Shouldn’t you be having some fun? Just a little?
    I don’t know who Nanny is, but she has most excellent puns.

  7. Eric
    Posted June 1, 2009 at 9:33 pm | Permalink

    “I don’t think were in Kansas any more”…..I was wondering when the trip was going to get hard….keep it up, you guys are awesome
    creep

  8. Eric
    Posted June 1, 2009 at 9:35 pm | Permalink

    p.s where do these code words come from, the last one was “dung session”

  9. kristal
    Posted June 1, 2009 at 11:36 pm | Permalink

    Sweet pic.

  10. Posted June 2, 2009 at 12:00 am | Permalink

    re: the wind. Who’s the smart one that decided to ride East to West? Don’t you people pay attention to the way the earth is spinning? Imagine if you had that as your tailwind!
    Sounds like some pretty hardcore, awesome days in there. Be sure to take some photos with the giant jackalope when you get to Du-”Boys”

  11. auntie HH
    Posted June 2, 2009 at 1:17 pm | Permalink

    what is your highest mph so far? great to see the recent photos!

  12. Mommy Dearest
    Posted June 2, 2009 at 1:33 pm | Permalink

    Hi Sarah and Geoff. I’m really enjoying your journey from my couch, and am glad to see from the fabulous pics that you’re having a great and fun adventure. You guys are amazing. Love you lots!

  13. Posted June 2, 2009 at 7:42 pm | Permalink

    Epic photo. You guys are crushing it.

  14. ells
    Posted June 6, 2009 at 2:26 pm | Permalink

    “WATCH THIS BABY!”

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