Tuesday, August 11, 2009

the loneliest highway

Salt Flats aka how my bike will eventually die. Don't tell Cannondale.

Tomorrow we make it to California, our last state. We've got about 10 days left, and it all ending kind of fast. I still don't really know how to describe the last few days, but i'll try.

We hauled across Nevada as fast as we could - a few 90 to 100 mile days in 90 degree heat. I originally thought Nevada would be completely flat desert, but quite the contrary, it was summit after summit. We took it completely on one highway called "The Loneliest Highway" and it lived up to its name - there was nothing there at all. As gorgeous as it was, it was also equally as boring. There were some great rides, but more or less they all blend together.

We ran into Bike and Build in Ely, Nevada. Again, we felt like the spoiled brats of bike touring, getting paid and not doing much work for charity, but they were cool about it and fun to ride with. I even thought about doing it the following year.

The top of Geiger, one of the hardest climbs of the route.

Two days ago I made a pretty insane rookie mistake and crossed Steve's wheel as we were going about 24 miles an hour and ate complete shit. Apparently it looked pretty brutal, but fortunately I wasn't hurt too badly: some road rash, bruised ass, and mostly a bruised ego. I cracked my helmet, broke my ipod, and broke my iPhone. I took the rest of that day in the van, more so pissed that I made such an amateur mistake, and attempted to take the day after off. I woke up from a nap in the van, realized that this was stupid, and got dressed and back on the bike right before a 2000 ft climb and then one of the most amazing descents we've had on this trip. Should Not Ride, Will Ride.

We doubled up one day and had a day off in Reno, our only day off this trip. Out of all the problems with this trip, the lack of days off was the biggest. Our event tonight would've had zero people without us being in town talking to bike kids and couriers to get them to come. Plus, Reno is pretty awesome. I dipped into my newfound gambling problem (is it a problem? so far i'm up $7), ate a lot of great vegan food, went swimming in a river, did a giant skyswing (a few hundred feet in the air, and then a free fall), and hung out with the raddest kids in town. The vegan straightedge is strong with this town.

Don't want this trip to end, but all of us are currently scheming to try to emulate this situation for next year. West coast? Mexico? Chicago to Maine through Canada?

water is colllld

salt flats, boneville speedway!


jen almost killed us.

but we're cool


nevada is endless summits, just barely high enough to be considered a climb.

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