So after the 11 mile climb we decided to stay at the top! This would be the second night of no shower and free camping. It was really a beautiful campground; we even made a fire! Only problem was it got really cold… so cold I had to arrange my pillow to keep my sleeping bag off of the side of my body that was not touching the ground.
The next day was mostly all down hill with a tailwind so we were definitely lucky with the wind. Only one place to eat lunch but luckily we were able to get the last 4 personal pizzas left in the store.
The puppet loft! So during monsoon season which starts late spring they get out the puppets and march down main street Silver City at the monsoon parade.
Last three days in Arizona! Scott and I ended up riding 80 miles with a 30 mph tail wind and wanted to get out of the wind. We found an abandoned house in Solomon AZ that was actually in really great shape. The photo doesn’t show the rat poop but otherwise this was a pretty awesome camping situation. We met this guy(Stephen) in Three Way who had some crazy story about hiking from Florida to San Diego and then up the coast to washington. His website: http://stephenadventure.com/
Stephen spent a month at the Bikehaus in Silver City, NM because of tendinitis in his foot and recommended staying there in the puppet loft!
This road or climb was 11miles of climbing and by far the best of the trip! Few cars, great views and miles of good old fashioned up!
These are all photos in Arizona! The land of dry air, bloody noises and old people. Haha, but seriously I am in a McDonald’s now and 20 of the 30 people here are over 60.(yes I was counting the staff)
Quote of the day(yesterday)- A guy was holding a beverage wrapped in a paper bag! I said “thanks for your help, sorry you missed crossing the road”.This guy-“no problem its my day off, I’am just day drinking!”
Photo 1: Tuesday market with really cheap fruit, mexican food and other tangible goods.
Photo 2: Rice pudding with raisins! Haha, I asked the store owner what the best flavor was and he said “well white people like chocolate”. I replied “yeah whats up with that!” The ride pudding and creme was very good, if you get a chance grab this sweet snack.
Photo 3-6: various cacti that grow in the desert
Photo 7: After the desert and a lack of green Sun City in Phoenix, AZ was a shocker! With Orange trees all over Scott and I wanted to get a bite. We asked this lady walking her dog and she said they are no good to eat, too bitter! Well of course we both ate half an orange and declared “man that is bitter”
Photo 8: Yeah cart parking in front of a diner, who knew. I wish I had got a shot of this guy driving down the road with his pimped out cart talking on an old school cell phone while taking the whole lane. I guess its legal to drive golf carts in the streets of Sun City.
Photo 9: Gene and Dawn were great hosts. They had a very interesting assortment of pets: puppy, 3 turtles, African Grey, and a hawk(passing through on migration, had just killed a bird and dropped it in their yard to eat later). Thank you so much you two!
Photo 1: tide pools near long beach with Cuz(Amy Zitzer)
Stayed with two brothers in Carlsbad that both road raced for the ECCC! And they also road from Alaska down to the southern tip of South America in 2011(took them 9 months).
2: Cold stone ice cream on day 2 heading East of Carlsbad, CA. Thanks mom for the gift card!
3: Country side on the way up to Julian(on the top of the mountains that separates the ocean from the desert)
4: 20 miles down hill but into a headwind! Hard day but at least the beginning was downhill. I splurged on a $54 hotel in Brawley, CA that night.
5: Another picture of the downhill. O by the way my stay in Julian was Awesome! Stayed with this couple that I met in 2012 on the way down from Glacier National park(going to the sun road). They work at a camp and let me eat with the staff for dinner and breakfast…plus they sent me along with leftover(meatloaf-lentals), fruit and figs! Thanks again Guys. I should have got a picture of this couple. They are actually in the Youtube video labeled west coast from 2012.
6: Welcome to the desert!
7: Not to offend anyone but I am just glad to not support this industry. A mile deep of baby cattle or at least as far as I could see!
8: People come from far and wide to ride these sand dunes! I believe this must have been the beach of the Salton Sea. Anyways the wind was crazy strong this day and the sand was blowing in my face all day. Left around 11 in the morning on Sunday not aware of Daylight savings time! Averaged 10 miles an hour on basically flat terrain and set up camp around 6pm at the Colorado river(just off the highway) 7 hours in the saddle! Wow that was a hard ride.
9: The sunsets in the desert really bring out the colors!
10: Finally in Arizona! Probably get to Phoenix on Wednesday.
Monterey! So I met this woman(Pierrette) who had walked from Banff, Canada to Vancouver…then down the coast to here. Amazing! Road the 17 mile drive past Spanish Bay, Spyglass, Cypress and Pebble Beach stopping in Carmel for a beach break. Road some of the most scenic 25 miles ever. Ended the day helping a guy get his clothes out of the washer at the laundromat and donating a slice of pizza to a wanderer and his dog. All and all a great day.
Santa Cruz to Monterey! Lots of wind and traffic- cyclists aren’t allowed on route 1 between these two cities. So I got lost a couple of times but found this great fruit and nut stand with a sign that said 10 kiwis=$1 and 7 avocados=$1. I ended up getting big juicy strawberries because I could smell them when riding and developed a craving.
Dont care what you do, but if you do it enough especially something risky, you tend to forget what could happen if you slip up. Today I had this experience on the road. I was too focused on making the traffic light that once turns red; is a two minute light. Had I been paying attention, the 2 ton fifteen passenger van most likely would have made the right hand turn before me. But since I wasn’t focused on my surroundings, all that was seen was the turn signal and the front right side of a black van turning right into my line. What happened next took less than a minute as I remember first getting my bike off of the street as the driver and others people nearby asking me if I was alright? “Are you alright?” asked the lady handing me my sun glasses, that seconds before where stashed in the vents of my helmet! “Yeah, thank you” I said barely loud enough for her to hear. Then it was the drivers turn to ask “are you alright?” “yeah” I said “it was probably my fault”. He replied “I had my turn signal on and I didn’t see you”. Seconds later after thanking everyone for stopping and realizing my bike was alright, I continued on. While riding away I heard the guy who hit me, ask the driver behind in the jeep wrangler if he had any cigarettes; “no” said the guy in the wrangler.
And that was it! A subtle reminder that the open road is a dangerous place and I am lucky to be whole with only a few scrapes and a very sore and stiff hip.
A busy couple of days off in Memphis, TN. That involved trolleys, railroad track crashes, riding, Monsters University(for Kids) and Superman(for older people), Stax records, Lorraine Hotel, baseball viewing from the YMCA(where we stayed), twisted ankle while playing Basketball, large fountains, mud Island and sici’s pizza. Plus the addition of 3 more riders(Itza-SnR graduate)(Lorelle and Rich-board members). Lots of fun!
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I just finished up a ride from San Francisco down the PCH to Huntington Beach, CA. After 2 months of sunshine and beach life it is time to head inland to El Paso TX. I will be leaving March 5th 2014 and depending on the wind it should take 2-3 weeks.
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