Start time: 07.44 then puncture repair, so about 8.10
Start location: Pueblo
Start State: Colorado
Start weather: Warm
Total millage so far: 2412.34
Finish time: 13.50
Finish location: Royal Gorge
Finish State: Colorado
Finish weather: Hot
Miles today: 56.30
Total millage so far: 2468.64
Today's top speed: 35.3
Today's average speed: 14.0
Todayís ride time: 4hr 1min 03
Punctures - 2 (slow back wheel), (staple in back wheel)
The Edge Of The Eighties
The Human League Ė Dare
The Human League - Greatest Hits
Blog for the day (Thursday, 5 July 2012):
Blog time, woopie, it feels like its taking over at times. Hard work after a long day in the saddle. So today was dominated by leaving Pueblo and getting to the foothills of The Rockies, that and Shawn/Sean the fireman, more on him later. Entering the city yesterday was big of a shock to the system, lots of cars, people, buildings and mess, oh and cars trying to hit you. At least we are only staying the one night. I do wish I had a bit more time to explore the place, but sometimes the days cycling leaves you shattered. There was a great junk shop I passed selling loads of what looked like office and home furniture from the 50s and 60s. Great designs on these wooden desks!
The hosts were very welcoming and I would be happy to extend the favour back to them. Although, as soon as I left their house I got a puncture. Well, I probably picked it up yesterday, but only noticed it when I pulled away this morning. So that help up my day having to change that. Glad I did I was just going to risk it by pumping up the tire. I wonder if now is a good time to explain to the yanks the use of something called a ďbreakĒ which is located near your feet in your car. I guess itís not something you are taught in driving school, so I guess Johnny English will have to explain it. I will try and do it as simply as possible. (wonder if diagrams would help?) So, here is an example of when to use this thing called a ďbreakĒ. OK, your driving along a road, and there is a car coming in the opposite direction, (that is towards you), not a convoy of cars, just a single car. With me so far? Now, on your side of the road in the same direction your travelling is another vehicle, it could be a car, a lorry or a bike. Instead of continuing to drive, or keeping the car in cruise control, where you would normally just overtake into oncoming traffic, try pushing with your foot, on the ďbreak". See what happens, yes your car is slowing down, well done. Now that you are slowing down, the car in the opposite direction will have passed you and there will be a gap into which you can overtake the vehicle in front of you. This is much easier then just trying to squeeze between the two vehicles. Please give it a try America.
The roads were really busy as it is 4th July, everyone seemed to be pulling boats and heading to the lakes. Happily cycling along listening to my music, stopping to take photos now and again, this guy on a bike catches me up. Itís kinda amazing how many recreational cyclists you donít see out on the roads, so I was happy to see him as he was to see me on the road, we chatted for about an hour or so which made the first part of the day go faster. He had set a high pace which I was finding hard to keep up as feeling really worn down at the moment, but he slowed down too which was good. We yapped about cycling, drivers, wife back home, Armstrong, drugs in the sport, Le Tour etc etc. He said he was a fireman although he was very slight and built for cycling. Sponsored by Specialized, he was riding a BMC similar to mine, a member of the local cycling club in Pueblo, he races pretty much every weekend. I knew I was way out of my depth here as we passed a dead antelope by the side of the road, so I told him about Ublad and how he likes to climb hills. We caught him up and I passed on the baton to him. Phew, as I was worn out already lol. It turns out, and I need to check this, that the guy missed the national cycle team by one place! That was the story of today, Shawn/Sean the fireman.
The scenery has been pretty mind blowing as I headed out of the city, I guess Bridgwater would look attractive after Kansas! Now at camp, the hills and mountains remind me very much of Spain, Croatia and other places on and around the Mediterranean. During the ride we passed a couple more prisons, one a Federal and one a State. I found out all the news when I dropped into one of the shops in Florence. Apparently the Federal prison is split into different categories with the really bad dudes kept 3stories below ground, or something like that, they are below ground. I forget what the term is, super-max maybe? Anyway, they are the worst of the worst. The guy was saying that the Oklahoma bomber timothy McVeigh and the shoe bomber guy who tried to take down one of the planes is in there too, I guess a load more nutters like him too. Hopefully there is a comfy chair wired up to the mains down there too. The guy also talked about the wild stallions or was it mustangs. There are apparently two herds? Is that the right name for them,? Two left which are wild and pure, they live up in Oregon. There are other wild horses which graze from here all the way to the coast too. Hopefully we will get to see them. In the town there was pretty much nothing to show that it was July 4th. Gutted that there is a fire bad on too, so no fireworks! I came all this way to see July 4th and get nothing!! Where's is my refund.
Hot and dry today, nasty! The air seems to be getting thinner as we go up into the hills too. In Canon City I stopped off to get some water and ice when this mad guy wanted to speak to me. How did I know he was madder then any of the other locals? Well he asked if I was from Englishland, his scruffy old hat and missing teeth were also a giveaway. He wanted to show me his bike. I made haste and got out of there! The last 8miles were pretty much hell. Hot, dry and then at 13.22 someone turned on a huge industrial fan ahead of us which pretty much stopped us in our tracks, making the last 3miles the worst possible. At least I had a nice cabin awaiting me, well, a Swedish wooden sauna, still, it was perfect. I cooked dinner with Gina which was a blast! Had a lot of laughs and fun doing that. I will certainly have to go on a diet when I get back, or before I go home. Not sure how I can go back after cycling 4500miles and be the same, if not fatter than when I left!! Help was on hand though. After going out to the gorge and having a look at that, which was pretty amazing, so high up!! Would not try a Butch Cassidy jump from there I can tell you, we headed back. As soon as I got in my cabin I knew I was done for. I was going to loose weight tonight. I think the heat, wind, altitude, exhaustion just kicked in. Maybe heat exhaustion, anyway, at least the bathrooms here are clean, so it was time for hardcore down the toilet. Itís a shame as Iím meant to be going white river rafting which I was looking fwd to since booking it earlier this year. I knew if I went and did that, then I would be out of action for 2-3days. I guess thatísí the way it goes sometimes.