Moving On

The original purpose behind The Fourteen Percent Ride has long since been fulfilled. So, I've decided that Mighty Proud will be the last posting. It just seems right.

But, don't worry. Or maybe you should. In any event, I plan to continue. I'll keep riding. And writing. Click here to come along in my new blog ~ The Long White Line. <-- check it out!


As I've ridden for the last two years, I've picked up on the fact that Shirley, my darling wife, has been more worried about my safety than impressed with my "accomplishments." How do I know this? Well, when I'd come back and tell her, for example, that I'd hit 53.6 mph going down FO, she'd reply, "I don't want to hear it." Being the sensitive sort I figured out, after many such comments, that just maybe we were not on the same page here. But last week, she told me that she would "greatly reduce her focus on the 'fear for my safety' issue." We talked about the tour, looked at some maps, researched nutrition suggestions on the internet, and so on, just enjoying the idea of the ride. How nice is that? Thank you, Shirley!

Tuesday, July 31, 2007


Detecting a pattern here? Well, think "Tuesday." I've had so much fun writing about riding that I guess I'll just keep on going. But, only once a week. There has been some progress on the Spare no Expense front. I did get that new computer that records climb data. Now I'll know how tall the rides are, not just how long.

There are new pedals and cleats in a box, waiting for the new shoes to arrive. Yep. Now I have everything I'll ever need. But there is that new... I think I'm detecting another pattern.

As for some of the comments on recent posts. Yes, I'm crazy, that's been established. But I'm still thinking about riding around and through Glacier National Park. Sort of re-certifying my craziness, something to do every year. It was mostly guys at the presentation, although Helen, Paul's wife, came to watch. I wore the shoes, my Georgia Tech jersey. And the shorts.

Oh, riding the bike. I've put in 224.1 miles since last Tuesday and am now at 3337.3 miles for the year. Only 1667.2 miles to go for 5,000. And according to the new computer, I've climbed 9,764 feet. Another statistic to chart. Do have all of the data in an Excel worksheet? Yes I do.

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

If This Is Tuesday, It Must Be...

Ithaca, New York. I'm here on a business trip. I'm not in Sparta, but that's where the Coast to Coast tour is tonight. Plans were to ride over and visit, but it is not to be. I called Carol (tour leader) and she informed me that "we've had some adventures since you and Bill left us in Missoula." So, adventures missed. And the tour too*. But Ithaca is a pleasant college town (Cornell University) with nasty hills all over. I found myself assessing the landscape as if I was going to jump on a bike and ride.

Not riding. But... a new computer, road shoes and pedals are on order. Actually, according to my emails, most are on the way. No riding since Sunday due to the trip to NY, but I'm up to 3,113.2 miles for the year after riding 135.6 miles last weekend.

* missed

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Nine For, Fifteen Against

Nine for, 15 against (or don't care or didn't pay attention to the question). That's the result of the poll for my presentation today, a brown-bag session at work where I'll show some pictures and talk about the trip. The question, "should I wear the tights and jersey for the presentation or not?" What will I do? You’ll have to wait to find out.

In addition to a little (very little) preparation for today’s "big event," I have ridden about 275 miles since returning from the tour. This brings my total riding for 2007 to 2,950 miles.

I've decided to set some goals for the rest of the year, the pull of getting ready for the tour having passed. First, go at least 5,000 miles. Twenty-one centuries between now and December 31 and I'm there! Also, I want to find a ride for next year. Right now I'm thinking about Cycle America’s Glacier National Park ride, but I'll study the options and see what happens. Bill? Well, he's off to Switzerland in mid-August. A practically perfect opportunity as he and a few others will scout out routes for a ride around Switzerland tour next year. Awesome.

Oh, about the "spare no expense" facet of riding. Larry, one of the riders on the tour, had this really great computer. It not only tracked the standard speed, distance and ride time metrics but logged details of the climbing. He had a profile of our ride across Thompson Pass and the computer stored total climbing and the average and maximum grades. I saw something like this in one of the many catalogs I get now. You can even download the data to your laptop. How cool is that. AND, I'm looking for a good pair of road shoes and pedals. After that, I'll have everything I need. And if you believe that…

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Home Again

Sunday, June 24
Missoula to La Crosse

Getaway day starts with a fine breakfast at the McDonalds near the hotel. It is a laid back morning, nothing at all like the previous seven days where we were up early, packing up tents and setting out on the bikes. One trick is for me to stop eating as if I were going to be burning mega calories. This is not easy. Quesadillas and steak last night, biscuits this morning and now, at the airport, hamburger and fries for lunch.

As badly as the trip started (see the June 14 Cancelled posting) it promises to end on a better note. The flight from Missoula to Minneapolis is on time. That in itself is unusual these days, but what happens next is even more so. Our checked bags are out on the carousel within minutes of our arrival. We no sooner collect them than the door to the Oversized Bags collection area opens and our bikes are wheeled out. We were on our way in less than 10 minutes. It was a bit of an adventure getting bags and bikes to the hotel shuttle pickup site. We had to negotiate two elevators, each of which were only slightly larger than us and our collected load. But, we made it, only once dropping the clumsy bike cases off of the cart.

Another McDonalds meal as we start the drive home, which doesn't take long at all. The speed limit is ?? somewhere. I think. Well, maybe not.

Home. Shirley comes out of through the garage. It is good to see her. Bags are unloaded and unceremoniously deposited on the floor in the garage. Later, I read my journal to Shirley. She's heard much of this as I had called her several times a day during the tour. I discover she has kept a not-on-a-bike-ride journal which she shares with me. I miss being on the road, but it is good to be home.

What next? I've discovered that I've enjoyed writing the blog about the preparation and ride. Not as much as I've enjoyed actually doing the things I've written about, but it has been a lot of fun doing this. I have a plan for another couple of posts, then have to decide how to end it. Any suggestions?

Friday, July 6, 2007


Saturday, June 23

I got off of my bike, leaned it against the Penske truck and helped Dan unload the bike boxes. In just a few short minutes, I'd gone from a rider to a civilian. It took some negotiations to arrange for transportation to the hotel where we would stay tonight - Dan needed to get it all straight with Carol, who was riding one of the sag wagons still out on the highway. Everything gets sorted out and Dan even gets DC (Cycle America staff) to ride along, enticing him with the promise of a stop at the Missoula REI. Bikes are disassembled and boxed and we are ready to leave. Not a lot of goodbyes, as only a few of the riders are in yet. We leave the tour, riding in one of the two vans.

How do you mitigate the effects of pasta withdrawal? Beef! The desk clerk at the hotel tells us that The Depot has the best steaks in town. This recommendation is seconded by the cab driver who picks us up a few minutes later. When we arrive, we find that they do not open for about an hour, but the staff suggests that we might like to wait at The Iron Horse, located about three blocks away. This sounds like an excellent idea. We go and decide maybe we should ease into the steak with some quesadillas. Sort of like stretching before the ride. We apply ourselves diligently to this task and leave ready to tackle the heavy lifting of real meat.

The Depot is one of those dark wood, low light establishments. There is a really interesting painting used over and over in the restaurant; I see it on the walls, the menus. A cowboy painting with bold colors. I like the effect, very much*.

We finish out this last day of the tour with good beef and good conversation. Getting back into the multi-tasking mode, I decide this dinner should also be a celebration of Bill's birthday, which was one week earlier, the day we flew into Seattle to start the tour. A fitting end to a day of transition.

* I find out later the painting is one of a collection gathered by the owner of The Depot, all of which have been done by artist Larry Pirnie. See some of the collection by clicking here.

Thursday, July 5, 2007


Saturday, June 23
Thompson Falls to Missoula

I rode through Paradise today. And the other place. Sort of like every day of the ride (except for the Spokane to Kellogg leg), where there were relatively easy stretches and then some hard parts. Today had one of the easier easy parts. And one of the harder hard ones.

Here it is, the last day...

After six days of riding, 515 miles on the road, we come to the longest ride of the Northwest Sampler tour. An entire week without ever seeing the sun set. Every day with nothing to do but get ready to ride, ride and recover from the ride. Do it one more time and the tour is over. As “momentous” as this day is, I do not recall thinking anything different on this morning as I rolled up the tent for the last time, hauled the bags up into the back of the Penske truck and rode off to the Elks club for breakfast. It is a another day to ride.

And what a ride it was. Once again we are treated to spectacular scenery as we ride along Montana 200. About 10 miles out of Thompson Falls, rocky hills come down and hug the road. The sign up ahead says “Watch for bighorn sheep. Next 12 miles.” And I did. But there were none to be seen on this morning. Still, a nice ride and I notice that the pace is pretty fast. The road is flat to gently rolling and there is a nice tailwind. The miles roll by as I ride on, looking up and to my left from time to time in hopes of spotting one of the aforementioned bighorns.

Along the way, we ride through Eddy and Wild Horse. The valley widens and the hills are now a mile or two away, ranches taking up residence in the grassy plains. At the 31 mile mark, we come to the water stop. It is Paradise. Paradise, Montana. So, this is what it is like. Not bad.

The wind continues to push and we arrive at the picnic stop in Dixon. My computer tells me I have averaged 19.2 mph over this first 57.5 miles of the ride. We are at a small park and it does not take long for one of the locals to come up and check things out - a slow moving black lab who, before this day is over, will be in his own handout paradise. The Dixon Senior Center is behind the park. It is a social club and there is a rummage sale going on. Apparently this is Sale Day in Montana as there have been signs everywhere. I go in and ask about using the facilities. The ladies watching the wares say that they do not think the Dixon seniors will mind; in fact, they tell me I can let Michelle know that she can direct the riders in as they arrive. A welcome invitation it is.

We have 7 miles of riding to get to the next turn on the route sheet where highway 200 comes together with highway 93, the route between Missoula and Glacier National Park. We are not in Paradise anymore, Toto. This is without doubt the most bicycle hostile route of the trip. It is a very busy two-lane highway, with heavy, fast moving traffic, much of it motor homes or trucks pulling trailers. The shoulder is wide, but there is a nearly continuous rumble strip just outside the white line. This means you have to ride the line and expose yourself to the traffic or ride in the debris field that is on the other side of the strip. We are on this road only briefly when Bill gets a flat. It promises to be a long stretch.

It is getting warmer, there is not so much a push from the wind anymore and the scenery is a bit less interesting. Cars whizzing by and the continuous grind trying to negotiate the rumble strip add to the grief. Then it gets hard. The road begins to rise. It isn’t much, but I really start to drag. There is a “good downhill” listed on the route sheet, but it is still 8 miles away. One of the least pleasant hours of the whole tour was spent on this section of Highways 200 and 93.

The highway eventually flattens out a bit. Then, it expands to four lanes and I can see the transition to a downhill grade up ahead. We met a self-supporting biker when Bill was fixing his flat. He told us that the descent into Missoula was a 40 mph downhill. I start down and the riding is easier. But it is hardly 40 mph. About half that actually. Still, it is a big improvement.

Then I see it. The road ahead just disappears over the edge at the start of the real descent. As I go over, I’m looking down a steep drop with the road sweeping around to the right. I do not think that this descent was all that much steeper than others on the trip, but it looked really nasty. Maybe it was the accumulated difficulty of the last few hours, the thought of dealing with traffic, not knowing what the hill looked like around that curve. But, it was there, between me and Missoula, so over I went. How was it? Nerve wracking. Not Paradise, to be sure. More like, … well, you know. Rolling around the first big curve, the descent continues unabated towards another big bend, this to the left. After that, I’m looking down a long stretch with the road continuing to cascade down the hill. I am still dropping at over 40 mph, but at least I could see the bottom and feel a little better. When I reach the flatter section, I realized that I was able to make the entire descent without having a single car or truck come up behind me. A little bit of Paradise, maybe.

There were a couple of navigational incidents in the last 12 miles, but eventually I was following the yellow arrows on a grand tour of the University of Montana campus. Pulling up into the parking lot at the dorm, I think, “I did it!” As I’ve said, you are allowed these moments on rides so I allowed myself to celebrate. Quietly.

“I did it!” *

Today’s ride ~ 104.5 miles
Trip total ~ 619.2 miles
Ride time ~ 5 hours 55 minutes

* Lest you get too impressed, there were 33 other riders who made it to Missoula. Thirty one of them kept going and 26 of them plan to ride until they dip their front wheels in the harbor at Boston. Now THAT's impressive.

Wednesday, July 4, 2007

Wordless Wednesday

So if I have to explain the posting today, it really isn't wordless. We'll call it Not so Many Words This Time, then. The slide show has pictures from our overnight, picnic and water stops. Except for the moose. He's there because it was cool to see a moose. Check in tommorrow (July 5) for the account of the last day of the ride.

Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Riding High

Friday, June 22
Kellogg, Idaho to Thompson Falls, Montana

Kellogg, Idaho is home to the world’s longest gondola, if you believe the sign at the boarding station. You can ride up to the top of one of the mountains that surround the town and come back again. You end up having gone nowhere, but with, I am sure, a lot of oohs and aahs along the way. And maybe a few shivers, depending on your attitude about altitude. It isn’t the destination, it’s the journey. It makes me think of the training I did. Two thousand miles and on the day before leaving for this trip I was still in La Crosse. But it was quite a journey in those two months that I rode. Two bikes, all the hills and rides along the river. Now, on this journey, one with a destination - Missoula, Montana - I am having the time of my life. Every mile something new. Well, there were those few endless stretches in the high plains, but even they have their place in the patchwork of experiences that make up the journey. This was a journey I had sought, worked for. Wanting the experience of long rides, big climbs, new landscapes. It has not disappointed.

After taking four and one half days to ride across Washington and get into Idaho, we will cross the Montana state line at about the two-thirds point in today’s short ride. When I wrote this in my paper journal, it struck me that in a matter of just a few days, 69 miles had become a short ride.

In spite of the pace of yesterday’s ride, I feel very good upon arising early on this Friday morning. We backtrack on the bike trail for about 7 miles then head off to the northeast on River Road. This is another of the several nice rides on winding roads and rivers. We are making our way towards Thompson Pass. On the route sheet, I read, at the 42.6 mile mark, "Long Climb 1 1/2 miles 9%." I'm not up on grades. We apparently did some 6%'s earlier, but I can't really picture 9%. Well, actually I can and it is not too pretty. We stop briefly at a Husky service station and get chilled Starbucks Frappuccinos. The guy holding down the fort tells us about the fishing in the nearby river - cutthroat trout. I can see it now: fishermen pull up in a rugged four wheel drive, saunter into the store and come out loaded with six packs of caramel latte coolers. A day in the wilderness.

Off we go, soon to turn off onto Thompson Pass Road. Just another spectacluar ride in the Idaho panhandle. It is 14 miles to the 9% climb, but the climbing starts much sooner. First 2% then 4%, up to 6% (yes, I'm guessing). Finally the road takes a sharp turn to the right and THE climb begins. I pedal along in low gear. It is not easy, but not, on the other hand, nearly as hard as I had expected either. Near the top of the pass, I am riding from one marker to the next (reflectors at 0.05 mile intervals), but it is clear now that I will make it to the pass, this one topping out at about 5,000 feet. And so I do. The picnic stop is set up in the parking lot of the overlook. Michelle is cooking sausages to go along with the rest of the generous lunch goodies.

You can look down on the road that you have just ridden up. It looks far away. It is far away. This is where you are allowed to pause and reflect, "I just rode up that road on a bike!" It feels good to sit on the rock in the warm sun and enjoy the achievement.

Soon it is time to go. Another long, tense downhill. Not terribly steep - about 35 mph for the most part, but it goes on and on. Once down to the lower levels, I ride through a few "towns," but it is mostly forested hills. Turning onto highway 200, I am greeted by a sign that says Thompson Falls. Montana. I never saw a Welcome to Montana sign and wonder when the border crossing actually happened. Several other riders commented later that they did not notice any acknowledgement of the Idaho-Montana border either.

After setting up our tents, we decide to walk back into town for the afternoon refreshment. We meet one of the local residents on the sidewalk and, being the observant sort, he notices that we are "not from around here," as he puts it. Wonder how he could tell? I say we are biking through and he says, "I ride a Harley myself. But, there's nothing wrong with a good Honda or Yamaha." "Bicycles," I tell him. "Oh. I'm not much for riding them." I never would have guessed. Later he tells us that he owns a town on the road back towards Thompson Pass. "It's just something I do," he says, as if this explains everything.

We have some transportation issues to deal with which end up in us having to walk back to the school to get a ride to dinner at the local Elks club, about two miles on the other side of town.

Today's ride ~ 69.6 miles
Trip total ~ 514.7 miles
Ride time ~ 4 hours 41 minutes

Monday, July 2, 2007

Missing the Mark; and Hitting It

Thursday, June 21
Spokane to Kellogg, Idaho

One of the things I learned about this bicycle touring thing is that you need to be able to follow the marks, the yellow arrows painted on the road by the routers. Sure, there was the Route Sheet, but it had 20 or 30 separate instructions and I do not have a photographic memory. I’d look at it, try to anticipate the route, but it was finding those arrows that was the real key to success. Missing one was a recipe for, well, an unexpected adventure. Just ask Roy. He missed a turn at Coeur D’Alene Lake and ended up in Plummer, Idaho. The picnic stop was in Harrison. Harrison is not too near Plummer. But, all’s well that ends well. Roy actually became a celebrity in Plummer. The tribal police force took him in, arranged for a lunch, took pictures with him and gave him a departmental shoulder patch. And, Carol went and got him back on track for the remainder of the ride.

Today we cross the state line and work our way to Kellogg, Idaho. And we had a decision to make right away. The food services at Gonzaga were prepared to have our breakfast ready at 7:30 a.m. This was halfway through the morning! Bill suggests and I agree that we will leave early and get our own breakfast. We stick to this plan even after an agreement is negotiated to have the breakfast ready at 6:30. So, around 6, we take off. Somewhere in southeastern Spokane, we pull into a bakery and have breakfast with good, strong coffee, fruit and pastry. Bill had quiche. Isn’t there something about “REAL men…?”

Then, we head out on our third straight long ride. It isn’t long before we get out of town and into a valley where we meet, head on, a stiff wind. This is not looking good at all. We struggle on and, to my relief, the wind dies down a bit. Out in open country, we ride along again on rolling hills under a generally clear sky. Once, out of nowhere, I feel rain drops. There are no clouds nearby, so I surmise that this is rain that has blown in from Seattle. It does not last long and we ride on. After the first water stop, we come to a collection of signs on the side of the road…”Idaho State Line” and “Entering Coeur D’Alene Indian Reservation.” Yet another milestone.

We push on, past the Casino and along a fairly busy highway. I’m still feeling pretty good, pedaling along, watching the tenths click off on my computer. In the groove, I guess. Then I hear something behind me. I look in my mirror and see Bill pumping furiously, calling to me, “Jack, you missed the mark!” I’d been ahead of him for a while and when I went past the turn, he had to find the extra gear to get close enough to hail me down. He said later that he had called several times and if I hadn’t noticed him this time, he’d have let me go. Wonder where I would have ended up?

Back on track, we negotiate about six miles of rollers that seem to get progressively higher as we go. Then, we turn and start a descent, now in a thick forest. We bump over the first of two cattle guards marked on the route sheet. This one surprises us and our passing is at high speed. Thankfully, it is a smooth “crossing.” A few more turns and suddenly we are treated to a magnificent view of Coeur D’Alene Lake below us. It is an absolutely breathtaking sight.

We wind our way down the road and at lake level, get on the wide paved bike path that will take us the remaining 48 miles to Kellogg. This is a “Rails to Trails” project and soon after we get onto the path, we cross a picturesque railroad bridge. The path is very cleverly stepped on the climb to the high point and again on the other side, the descent for us.

The path winds around the lake and we slow down, take in the wildflowers, trees, and panoramic views across the water. It is a great ride. We are soon in Harrison, having lunch at a small city park looking out over the lake. There is an espresso bar across the street, and I look forward to a midday coffee after lunch. It was, alas, not to be. When I went over, I found the shop to be closed. Oh, well. And, it was off again to finish the ride to Kellogg.

The general idea was to ride an easy pace through this beautiful countryside. I went out at a comfortable pace and soon found myself far ahead of Bill and Craig. Looking at the computer, I see I’m going along at a 22 mph clip. We stop at one point to photograph a young moose just off the side of the trail. Bill says, “This isn’t a time trial.” I reply, “I know. But, I have never, ever felt this good on a bike.” I just have to go. And go. I’m enjoying the view; I don’t feel like I’m working hard; I’m just going. It was an amazing, and heretofore never experienced sensation.

I go on, clicking off the miles. At about ten miles from Kellogg, I began to realize that Neil and Kimmarie, who were at the lunch stop when we left, had not passed me yet. I was on track to be first to arrive at the school in Kellogg. I tell myself that this is not important. Just enjoy the ride. But at five miles out, I finally decided I want to be the first in. If I am, I know, it is only because Neil and Kimmarie took a really long lunch. Still, I was now set on getting in ahead of the rest of the tour. I had slowed down a bit, settling into what seemed to be a very easy pace, but still making good time. Then, a surprise.

As I entered Kellogg I looked in my mirror and saw Bill and Craig, very close and closing. As I said earlier, this ride was in general not a competition for me. But at this particular point, it was. For the next mile, anyway. So, I stood up and picked up my speed. I heard Bill holler, “Jack…” but on the now fairly narrow and winding bike path, he had to fall back. He said later that he was going to say as he went past, “Don’t mess with the peloton.” But, surprisingly, I still had some legs left and sprinted to the end of the bike path. Just a few blocks from the school now, we rode in together.

There’s no explaining why I felt so good, all the way to the end of today’s 96.4 mile leg. Nor can I explain how it felt. It was just a really good feeling.

As I’ve said, there was much to learn about riding. Bill tells me as we are setting up our tents that the first in buys. I’m sure he isn’t just making up the rules as we go…

Today’s ride ~ 96.4 miles
Trip total ~ 445.1 miles
Ride time today ~ 5 hours 51 minutes

Sunday, July 1, 2007

Miles to Go Before I Sleep

Wednesday, June 20
Electric City to Spokane

I would call Shirley from the road, several times a day; this to share my excitement, let her know how things were going. During one conversation she asked me what time it got dark out here in the Pacific Northwest. I replied, “I don’t have a clue.” It’s true. I was asleep before nautical twilight. Well, before civil twilight. Actually, it was before sunset. Even at the end of the longest day, I felt pretty good after a shower and our mid afternoon refreshment, but once dinner and the evening meeting were over, it was time to go to bed. And sleep. Very well.

It was the second long ride of the tour, 94.4 miles it turned out. It started with, you guessed it, a 3 mile climb. Just out of the town of Grand Coulee where we had breakfast at the same restaurant that served us the latest of our string of lasagna dinners the night before, we found ourselves above the backside of Grand Coulee dam. Even from this vantage point, where you could not see its height or expanse, it is an impressive structure.

Shortly after this we start the climb. When I reached the top, I realized that this was the best climb I’d ever done. How do I measure this? Bill did not go by me on the way up. He is a very good rider and a really, really good climber. I gauge my climbs by how long he has to wait at the top for me to arrive. This has never happened before, didn’t happen again on the tour and might well never happen again. So, it was a good climb to be sure.

It wasn’t long after we gained the top that Bill broke the cable for the rear-wheel gears. Stuck with only the three chain ring options, he rode for nearly thirty miles, luckily a section of rolling hills with no long, steep climbs. At the picnic stop Niall, the tour mechanic, had a new cable installed before Bill was through with his sandwich. Knowing that the “sag wagons” were cruising the course and that we had a fully equipped mechanic made for some peace of mind as we rode the open road.

One good climb does not a good ride make. As we turned to a more easterly direction, we met a headwind. This and the long stretch of rolling hills slowed me down and I was glad for the lunch break. Still, it was a pretty stretch of road. At one point there was this amazing expanse of green near the road with another field of dazzling yellow farther back.

It went better after eating and resting a bit and I was off for Spokane. Along the way Neil, the Irish riding machine, went by me. He goes by everyone. An amazing rider. Shortly thereafter I look up just in time to see him take a tumble off to the right of the shoulder. When I get to the scene of the accident, he is up, looking at his bike. He says he’s OK, that he had a momentary lapse in attention and got into the sand off of the shoulder. “Happens all the time,” he says. I know why, too. When this happens to me -- when I start drifting to the edge of the shoulder -- I have time to assess the situation, ponder a few alternative courses of action, choose one and execute it. Neil, on the other hand, at the speed he rides, has very little time to react.

Getting into Spokane means riding on a very nice bike trail for a while. Then, it is a tour of the western end of the city before finally rolling in to the Gonzaga University campus where we have dorm rooms for the night. Rooms! With beds! And “bed-wetter” mattresses as Carol would note later. They were covered in a plastic material that, in addition to Carol’s view of their primary function, served to make them very warm to sleep on in the non air-conditioned rooms.

We have plans to go out with Bill’s friends Rex and Susan. Rex picks us up at the dorm and on the way to his home we discuss dinner options. “Anything except pasta or potatoes,” Bill suggests. I discover that these are real friends when later, Susan suggests that we dine on spaghetti. Bill tells her we have opted for pasta-free dining tonight. She laughs and suggest that we’d best be on our way to the brew pub for hamburgers, then. We didn’t do so well on the potato thing, however. French fries, a necessary accompaniment to the hamburgers, you know.

Back to the plastic beds which provided, in spite of the above mentioned issues, a good night’s sleep.

Today’s ride ~ 94.4 miles
Trip total ~ 348.7 miles
Ride time today ~ 6 hours 49 minutes