Sunday, August 9, 2009

Day 40: Walden, CO to Saratoga, WY (68 Miles)

This is not Henry David Thoreau's Walden. It's quite the unnatural human construct... a blip of civilization appearing in the midst of barren wilderness. I didn't hear any coyotes or wolves singing their primal howls, but I did have the privilege of listening to a small dog bark throughout the night. Feeling groggy, I coaxed the lads to wake up and get moving. We decided we needed breakfast in town, due to little-to-no services for the next 50 miles or so. We ate some more diner eggs and toast. I'm actually getting tired of eating. I can barely stomach diner food anymore and I long for the day I can return to my strict diet of spinach wraps and burritos...

We made it to the Wyoming border without viewing one moose, in spite of what many Eastbounders informed us. The only moose I glimpsed was the large plastic monstrosity hanging out on Main Street in Walden. Dowds won the sprint to the border, continuing his perfect record. We met Chris & Chris there and they took a few photos of us and took off. The moment we rode into Wyoming, a horribly strong headwind kicked in full force. The sign in the photo should say "Welcome to Windy Wyoming." I've heard stories about Wyoming's winds and for just reasons. It actually took a lot of effort to ride downhill. As I was riding into Riverside for lunch, I was honked at by a fat man in a red pickup truck. He then sheepishly flipped me the middle finger. "Welcome to Windy, Unfriendly Wyoming."

With powerful winds fighting us all day, we chain-ganged it for another 30 miles and called it quits in the town of Saratoga. Where, unlike the resort-like Hot Sulphur Springs, had a natural and FREE hot spring. It flowed into a nearby river and mixed well for comfortable soaking. We relaxed there for a bit and said our goodbyes to the Chrisses, who were riding an extra 30 miles out of town. We later rode around and found a laundromat. No longer smelling like wet dogs, we found a place for dinner. Callum got another flat and he fixed it while we were enjoying ice cream at a small shop. The shop was run by a sweet Italian lady and I shared with her my stories from my summer semester in Rome. She was very nice and enjoyable to chat with.

Still feeling tired from a night of non-sleep, I decided to leave the shop early and set up my tent near the river. I stopped at convenient store and began chatting with a girl sitting outside and smoking a cigarrete. I told her what I was doing (riding my bike a lot) and she told me she's the daughter of the motel owner across the street. She then told me she could get me a "sick deal" and I followed along with her. In spite of her nasty smoking habits, she was pretty cute... so I kept tagging along. Before I knew it, I was in a room and calling the guys to tell them of my good luck. Sadly, the room was too small for a sneak in and I told them I'd see them tomorrow. I'm sure they won't mind, especially considering that they're camping outside a beautiful, natural hot spring.


Momma said...

Yummy ice cream!! Love the photo's Blake!
Wish I could and see what you are witnessing each and every day.
Stay safe and happy, Love Momma

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