The map – an overview

Map OverviewIn response to the request for a map I am posting this overview.  Will post each day’s ride as I complete it, as this is just the plan and I’m not entirely certain where I will be riding each day. (that and, you know, the Google Map fiasco…)

I will also be adding each day’s map to the post about the ride, so if you find you’re bored late some evening and want to see where I’ve been, you can bounce around on the site and view the updates.  🙂

East of Eden


Eden, IdahoSo about 3 miles after I took this picture all hell broke loose. (literally just past the 34 mile mark)  The map took me up a hill that looked perfectly normal, so I shifted into a “granny gear” and started to pedal hard to get up.  But managed to throw the chain.  Which would have been fine, but I couldn’t get unclipped from the bike.  Randy had just passed me heading up the hill to make sure I was going the right way, so didn’t see me crash on the side of the road when I lost forward momentum, which happens very quickly when your chain isn’t engaged in the sprocket.

I lay there for somewhere between 3 & 5 minutes trying to figure out if I was more hurt than I thought.  My knee was bleeding just a little bit, and I had the wind knocked out of me, but I could find nothing significant.  Randy had been waiting up the road for me, and came looking to see what had happened just as I got up.

Once we got me going the right direction again, I was okay for several miles, but kept getting hit by a head wind that would take my breath away.  My ribs ached like I’d just landed on the ground. Attributing it all to the wind, I texted Randy and had him come back and I’d head the other direction for the second half.

Got to the “finish” and discovered that my rear tire wasn’t holding air so we went to a bike shop about 10 miles away and got new sealant in the tire, which seemed to fix the problem. (Thank you and shout out to Rock’s Cycling and Fitness in Burley, Idaho – you totally saved me!)

I only got about 10 miles in the reverse direction. I knew there was a significant problem when I walked up a very steep hill in the heat and saw that there was only unpaved road in front of me, and it was 94 degrees. There were some beautiful shady trees on my right and the greenest grass I’d seen all day, so I sat down and waited for Randy to come up the hill.  (He’d been following me pretty closely because of the heat and the pace I was going through water/ice)  He drove right past me while I was sitting there stretching.  Lol.

Anyway, when he came back around, he got out and sat down with me and just let me vent.  I still had 18 miles to go, (made just more than 50 miles) and I was frustrated, hot, and exhausted.  I would have been crying, but the tears wouldn’t come (was pretty dehydrated, too). Was lying on the grass and could feel my heart beating super-fast through my whole body.  Had Randy put a timer on his phone for one minute, and I was at 180 bpm, which is 8 bpm faster than my absolute maximum for my age, and I’d been sitting down for almost 20 minutes.  My breathing was normal.

The owners of the home where the super green grass and shade was came out and visited with us for a little bit. They were shocked that I would attempt such a thing and offered lunch and ice water.  I’d eaten just a mile before, and dehydration always makes me nauseous when it comes to ice water or food, so we sat and chatted a little longer and then hit the road home.  Slept for a long time in the car and again when I got home.  I am one gigantic bruise on my right side, and everything hurts, but I don’t believe I’m actually broken.  Just old.  Lol. I may just stay in Utah this coming Saturday and do a few less miles to make sure I recover before hitting the road again as hard.  Probably will stay on the route, but 30 miles should suffice if I get a good early start and monitor the heat.Day Seven Part One

Day Seven Part Two.PNG

Saturday’s Ride 8/5

Okay, the “easy” plan using Google maps turned out to be… not so great.  Love Google’s interface, just not so much the execution.  If it has a name, Google will tell you that you can ride it on a bicycle.  Even if the pavement turns into a dirt road… that goes through an Air Force bombing range.

Bombing range

By the time we had gone a few miles in the soft gravel it was evident even the newly acquired hybrid bike wasn’t going to work, and we found another route.  But nearly 8 hours in the heat, dust, and increasing smoke from a fire 200 miles away (pray for Pocatello!) had me struggling to breathe after only 3 1/2 hours of actual riding, and a grueling 20 miles, so we called it a day.

Got home last evening and revamped the plan – we stopped at a truck stop on the way home for gas, and found a Trucker’s Atlas, so got that – will be marking the map and only taking roads that big rigs could drive on (or paved trails through cities – yeah, I’ll cave on that part).  Paper wins the day for the planning portion.

Happy riding!

Promontory Summit

So yesterday’s ride started at the Idaho/Utah border.  That was pretty cool.  We got there at 3AM and I did the first 5 miles in 15 minutes.  That was even cooler!  By 3:25, though, I had a problem.  Google maps (which I absolutely adore) had routed me through someone’s private property on a dirt road over to Promontory (where the last spike was driven, uniting the Central Pacific Railroad and the Union Railroads, and creating the Transcontinental – Union Pacific – Railroad).  We made a quick decision to head back toward Snowville and rework the plan when we got there.  By 5AM we were back in the car heading south, and decided that I’d pick up whatever paved road went beyond Promontory and just finish the route from there. Randy is such a great Support and Gear wagon. He drove behind me for many of the miles – not only keeping me in plenty of light when it was pitch black outside (but I gotta say, the lack of light pollution out in the middle of nowhere makes the night sky absolutely incredible), but also giving me the latitude to ride in the middle of the lane where the pavement is smoother and I can avoid the numerous roadkill more easily – without worrying about cars not seeing me.  If someone does come, they have to go around him to get past me.  That was helpful.  Not that there were many cars at that time of day, of course.

Anyway, when we got to Promontory it was a little after 6, and that was where the paved road ends.  Hopped on the bike and started riding.  It’s only about 30 miles to the Wal-Mart Distribution center where we left off last week, and it was nice that it still wasn’t very hot, but Randy still followed me for a fair chunk of that part.  There was a fantastic climb, and then a mile or so of winding downhill that reminded me of the skateboarding scene in The Secret Life of Walter Middy.    But without the green and snow. And the pavement isn’t as black in the middle of nowhere.  And there were no clouds.  Okay, not so much like this picture as it felt like the feeling you have when you watch it – like you’re going so fast, and if you make one mistake, you’re going to be a splat mark on the road. (42 mph on a bicycle is pretty speedy, I gotta say)

Image result for the secret life of walter mitty

(this picture is from the movie, not from my ride)

After the downhill, there was just a lot of flat and it started to get warm.  My muscles got weary with 4 miles to go, and I had to stretch a couple of times to complete those 4.  But a good, solid 50.5 miles that only took just over 4 hours, so that’s faster than I have done in a while, usually averaging 10 or so mph.

This week I’m getting a hybrid bike so that if I need to be on a dirt road I can still ride. This weekend’s planned ride is about 40 miles on a dirt road, and riding a road bike on dirt really isn’t going to do the road bike any favors.  Or, I’m guessing, my shoulders and muscles.

Happy riding!

Day Six Part One

Day Six Part Two

65 miles – Corinne to Rose Park

Day Five

Friday traffic is ridiculous on Pioneer Day weekend.  We got as far as the Wal-Mart distribution center in Corinne on Friday before I got on the bike to head to our hotel.  I might have gone farther if it wasn’t going to be so late when I got to the hotel, but I suspect that would have been unwise since it was about 10 billion degrees outside.  (okay, not really, but much earlier and it was 99) So 9.5 miles on Friday night.

Then yesterday I got up early and rode before daybreak.  I was 20 miles into the (planned) 54 before dawn started to peek out over the mountains and enjoying the relative cool.  At 49 miles in, the Legacy Parkway trail just suddenly stopped, and the GPS had a hard time rerouting me.  That cut my pace substantially, because I had no idea other than, “south” where I was going.

Ultimately it only added 1/2 a mile to the ride, and though there were some harrowing moments when I found myself in between the merge of a freeway off-ramp and the road I chose, (sorry, mom…) I was done with my 54.5 miles before 9:30 AM and home before 10.

Discovered Facebook Live in the last couple of weeks – see the videos on my feed there.  I love that I can show some of the scenery I’m riding through – looking up.  I don’t adjust the position of the camera much because I don’t want to lose my phone from the holster I keep it in on my bike, but if you want to see some of the things I see, take a gander over there.

🙂  347 miles in.  9 percent of the way done.  Next week I will be done with 10.5 percent. 🙂

41.25 mile Saturday

Day FourGood ride  from Rose Park to Lehi.  The first 30 miles were quick and fairly simple.  The last 10 had a really tough climb and it had gotten pretty hot, as well as hitting an unexpected detour (that included seeing my first rattlesnake of the year – don’t worry, mom, I was on a back-road in a construction area, and I’m sure they just disrupted it’s habitat and was easily avoided). I found that so long as I stretch regularly throughout the ride, my knee doesn’t ache.

Anyway, this weekend I’ve got 62 miles slated on the route.  That will make a total of 342 miles “on route”, even though I’m taking them out of order.  644 miles to make up the “middle” before September 9.  That’s just under 54 miles per ride. That won’t be terrible at all!  🙂

10 miles – faster

So I’ve been doing 10 miles for a few days this week, just getting back in the swing of things.  The first day I paced at 12.8 mph, the second at 13.2, and this morning at 14 mph. I like how this is shaping up.  It’s fairly likely that I will go a little slower (on average) on the longer rides, but my knee didn’t ache at all this morning.  That made me super happy. Another 10 tomorrow morning, and then 40 on Saturday.

First couple of days back

So my first day back on the bike was awesome.  I didn’t even notice that it was 95 degrees, although I knew it was warm.  Didn’t care, I was back on the bike. The knee started to ache a little in the 8th of 10 miles, but as soon as I stretched it out, was all better.

This morning I got up and rode again.  Just another 10 miles.  The arthritis waited until the 9th mile to kick in, and it wasn’t nearly as achy as Monday, so that made me happy.  It was also faster than Monday, as I think I got comfortable with the fact that I’m not actually hurt anymore.  Funny what the mind does.

Anyway, my understanding is that d’Artagnan is going to be editing the videos from the trip, so hopefully I will have some to post for you pretty soon here.  40 miles on Saturday, I’m starting dark and early so I don’t get too hot.  It’s supposed to be a scorcher! 🙂


So I’m cleared to ride.  Doc was amazed at how quickly and well I’ve healed. THANK YOU, PT!

Got the bike down last night and put it in the car for an early morning ride… and the tires were flat. Unfortunately since I have tubeless tires, this means that I have to have them resealed at the shop.

The good news is that I wasn’t planning on riding this weekend, anyway, due to a family reunion.  If it were being held anywhere near my route, I would have planned for at least a few miles, but I’m going to be good and just wait until the bike is ready and I’m ready.