Category Archives: Utah bicycling

SLC to Denver. Epilogue. Day 11: Boulder to Denver

I reserved a spot on the most environmentally correct shuttle (this is Boulder ) to the airport.  I got there early; even walking on the pavement in my bike shoes carrying all my stuff. Since I had some time, I went to the Super Cuts and got my hair cut to reenter civilization.  Then with a bit of time left, I went to the Goodwill a couple of doors down. I ended up buying a Colorado University T-shirt that said ARTS in big letters over the right upper chest. Underneath, in smaller letters, it said Addiction Recovery Treatment Services. Thanks CU.

When I was leaving there, I saw the sun catch a tiny glitter stuck in the crack of the sidewalk. I bent down to examine it and found a small golden Guadalupe charm. I happily rescued it.

When the shuttle guy finally got there he was upset that the lady on the phone had made me walk. They all made a fuss about it because the girls work from home and this girl had it wrong. They were so upset with her, I made sure I couldn’t remember her name. They gave me the trip for free.

In the shuttle shack, they had a small stack of give away books. I took John Steinbeck’s “The Pearl”. Reading that on the plane trip home from start to finish, was the perfect ending to the perfect trip.

SLC to Denver.Day 7, part2: Steamboat to Kremmling continued

I didn’t mean for that to publish it’s not that easy to blog on the phone, especially being so tired.

Here’s Other photos from today’s ride. It was very dark and grey and misty and rainy.


        

Here’s Kremmling


Cool Huh? This was next to a local artist gallery and next to that was a building full of artist studios! it was amazing because there’s very little in this town.

The hotel I am in is run by a couple who have been running it for two years. Hotel was first established in 1906 the floors are original and beautiful.

There are 28 rooms and this very creative couple has decorated each room according to a theme. I am in the Zane Grey room. He was a Mystery writer and he wrote a Mystery about Kremmling.

On the wall is an antelope skin complete with legs and hoofs, barbed wire and fishing poles that are one hundred years old.

In the hallway, the wife’s wedding dress is on display and downstairs is her mother’s wedding dress. Everything in all the rooms has significance and meaning.

It partly feels like a boarding house and it partly feels like a home. It’s a gift to be here.

SLC to Denver.Day 5: Maybell to Yampa River State Park

In Maybelle the diner is wonderful and the food is fantastic. The few others people in the diner are locals.

I order a burger that on the menu is in memory of someone. I ask the waitress who that person is. I am imagining that this person died of old age and lived here forever and is remembered for such and such. Well, no such thing.  The waitress is also the owner. She explains that the burger is her son’s favorite burger and she lost her son, her only child.

This strikes me as super sad obviously and I don’t ask how. I don’t want to know really. Here’s a portrait of them together. The husband is the cook and as I said the food is fantastic .

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The few people who come in the café after me also are all locals. Locals as in 50 miles away this direction or that direction. They catch up on news. They talk about the mine. They talk about the new foreman who is too young. They talk about the danger of credit cards.

Outside, there are pay telephone booths! With a great accompanying mural.

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The next morning I notice there’s a post office in Maybell and I go there to mail off whatever I can get rid of to make my load lighter. I’m riding a steel bike and caring 22 pounds of stuff (clothes,camping gear, toiletries, food,drink). With hills ahead I am shipping back anything I can. Each long distance bike trip I send back my lock. They are heavy. You’d think I wouldn’t take it to begin with it. As if I’ve learned from the past. However it’s hard to leave Oakland without a lock. In Oakland, it’s hard to imagine a world without locks.
The lady at the post office tells me the whole story of the son that died. The short version is; he was drunk and he was driving.

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I leave Maybelle to have an easy day of 30 miles to Craig, which is a big city supposedly, and then another 17 to Hayden.

Once I got to Colorado I started to see skeletons; skeletons of animals that are completely clean and white. I felt like I was in “The Fair Side”cartoon.

When I was biking is 57 miles of nothing all alone I wondered about those New Age people who have VisionQuests. Like they sit somewhere in the woods for 24 hours and if something happens they blow a whistle which signals for someone to come and rescue them. Where’s the conquest in that? I wonder what This trip is to that and what is a VisionQuest anyhow?

What I received most from this trip: the taste that has been written deeply upon me, is a great awe and connection with Mother Earth.

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I sing all sorts of songs from childhood. I don’t sing them out loud because the altitude is too high but I sing them in my head songs like Archie Bell and the Dells or something like that singing  “25 miles to go now, over the hill.. just around the bend” or Cat Stevens “miles from nowhere, guess I’ll take my time, oh yeah to reach, there Got a mountain, I have to climb,  oh yeah to reach there” and so on.

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When I pass by the cows or any animal but especially the cows, I always say hello and they always turn their heads and look at me and then I always thank them for the milk and they always listen to me and if I hold up my camera to take a picture of them they turn around and walk away. Now if you ask me that’s an intelligent animal.

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When I’m home I never eat beef but here I have had to twice simply because I need all the protein I can get and it’s not easy to get in the gas station and that’s often all I have to choose from; that and or a food desert grocery store. So here, if I can get beef, I get it. Cooked.

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I make it to Craig pretty early and I take my bike to the one bike store there which is a man and his wife and their 3 year old in a garage. I would have taken a photo but it didn’t seem polite.

There is a TV like box hanging from the ceiling which is playing Disney movies for the three-year-old who is on the ground on the sleeping bag.

Mine is a brand-new bike and I’ve ridden it a couple of hundred miles at this point so it needs to be adjusted. At least,

I will feel better if it is adjusted. I’ll feel safer going over the hard rocky mountain passes which are coming up.

While the husband is fixing the bike I go to an Internet café and blog a bit and get a used book which is quite welcome in my tent at night when I can’t sleep and I’m looking forward to reading it tonight as well.

I also get a cappuccino which is like a miracle.

The coal mining thing is everywhere and it’s sad because of course that’s  not going to last because energy from coal is not a good thing.

Minimum wage is $7.25 here and things are expensive because everybody is so far from a distribution point.

I tip largely because as the poet Rusty Rebar in San Francisco said at Peter Whitehead’s last performance “if you’ve got slack and you don’t share it, you’re an asshole.”  Compared to these people, I’ve got slack.

After I’m done with the bookstore café and the bike shop I go to the grocery store because I need food for dinner. When I go into the grocery store it’s a bright sunny day when I come out of the grocery store the day is covered with a dark gray sky and the wind is blowing everything in the parking lot everywhere. It looks like big rain and I’m not sure whether or not to stay in Craig or ride the 17 miles to Hayden.

But I’m getting ahead of myself sorry. In the grocery store I meet a Menonite women. She is light itself her expression of Christianity cancels out the mean ice cream lady. The Menonite women is positively glowing with Goodwill and health.

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This is saying a lot for Craig, CO. Most of the people here look bad. Their skin is bad and their teeth are bad. Most of the women are obese. Life in the coal mine is not looking good on these people.

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There were two other amazing things I saw at the grocery store that I haven’t seen since Salt Lake City. One was a Starbucks. The other was an African-American man. Not only was he African-American but he had an Oakland T-shirt on! It didn’t say the word “Oakland”. Instead I recognized immediately the Oakland the tree logo and I said  “Oakland!” And we did a high fire in passing.

I don’t quite make it to the town of Hayden because the Yampa River State Park is 2 miles west of that. It’s quite nice. I set up my teeny tiny tent in the tent site. I am the only tent. I always am. The rest of the park is filled with large RVs but I’m away from them. The entire facility is really nice even though they make you pay for showers.

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SLC to Denver.Day 4: Dinosaur Colorado to Maybell Colorado: 64 miles of nothing but land

I wake up in Dinosaur and the first thing to say at loud to myself is I’ve never felt so lonely. My immune system is down because I haven’t gotten any sleep.

Like I said Dinosaur is not pretty. Check out the sign on this restaurant.

But the people were great (except for the ice cream lady ). the two guys that clean the restroom and shower were great and I’ve never seen a cleaner shower or restroom; nothing but the basics no mirror or anything but still it was clean and those guys were really friendly.

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Here’s the floor.  I love floors like this. I grew up with the bathroom floor like this. Since I’m a patternmaker I love to look at patterns I can’t figure out … especially when there’s no pattern

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After I get done whimpering I pop out of my tent and I find on top of my clothes, which I left on the picnic table, is a note a pen and a large bag of gummy bears.

The note turns out to be from a fellow named Jim and it’s very encouraging it explains that he saw me arrive last night and that he also is a fellow traveler and is here for the hang gliding competition.

He leaves his number and tells me to call him and that he is just in the house 80 feet away and he gets up at six. What he means by “the house” is one of the hotel bungalows that has gone out of business a long time ago here’s what they look like from the picnic table.

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It’s a super nice note; I especially liked the line where he told me ” your manifestation is amazing”. I write him back a note and explain that I am on a schedule and can’t hang out and left him my two glasses of wine and told him to imagine and that I was drinking one of them.

I took the gummy bears even though I have never eaten gummy bears nor have I ever wanted to but I didn’t want to be rude and leave them.

After strong coffee in the gas station I head out for the next ride which was 57 miles to Maybelle with nothing in between nothing at all except beauty, space and sky.


               
The ride was hard in two ways: number one, there were a lot of hills a lot of long hills  going up up up: gradual but tiring. I am riding always under the sun all the way not a tree ever, not one, has been on the road giving shade. It is not so bad as I am riding in early September and at high elevation so it is not terribly hot.

Even though I am riding on the Colorado Plateau these hills do have down hills so that’s pleasant and I can get roaring up to 44 miles an hour. (Inspired by Lily Moriarty at 14 karats, the jewelry store on college ave. who does that speed going downhill).

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Once, when I was doing that, there was a black line on the road and it was coming up too fast and I thought to myself if that black line is three-dimensional I’m done for and if its two-dimensional I’m fine and of course It turned out to be fine or I wouldn’t be writing this.

The second way that the day was hard was that it was 57 miles with nothing in between.There was not a gas station or anything in between so I carried my food and water from Vernal. Carring the food and water wasn’t hard. What was mentally and emotionally challenging was being so vulnerable on the highway all alone with nothing for so many miles.

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You really realize how bad sugar is for you when you’re doing something like this. At one point I even threw an Apple away after eating two bites of it because I just couldn’t stand the sugar. What I needed was protein.

It’s infuriating when you look at the map and there’s a dot that says BlueMountain and there’s another dot that says Oak Springs and you think these places are towns but they’re not. They are just signs. Later I realized that perhaps there’s a coal mine nearby and that’s why they on the map because otherwise I don’t know why they’re on the map.


                        

At some point along the ride I see a sign that says rest stop 1 mile and I wonder to myself what could I use at a rest stop. I don’t want anything from a vending machine and I don’t need a bathroom because I can go to the bathroom anywhere. And then I think “Shade!… a rest stop is going to have shade!” so I go the rest stop.

And there I meet another guy name Jim. This Jim is not a vagabond. This Jim is extremely wealthy with homes in Washington DC, Colorado and Costa Rica.

We talk a lot about Washington DC and have a lot in common there. His eyes are as blue as his turquoise shirt as is the sky as are his fancy glasses.

He is having an adventure in his car with his well bred poodle driving around the vastness. He’s a super nice guy and I’m very glad to have met him but I am also noticing that the wind is strongly in my direction and I want the benefit of that over these many hills that I mentioned earlier.


     As I am climbing gradually these hills I am wondering how the hell I am ever going to get over a rabbit ears pass if I am in lower gears on these hills because these hills are not even having passing lanes .


Finally I get to Maybell and I am thrilled when the lady in the café says, “You came all the way from Dinosaur? Wow, you’ve gone over a whole lotta big  hills!”

She tells me that there are a few climbs around Craig Colorado but really it’s mostly flat to Steamboat Springs. I am glad to hear this.

Maybelle doesn’t have much. It has a hotel, café and a gas station and the church. Here’s the sign by church. I react to this like the “Freedom” signs that I try to figure it out. The money part I get. But the rest of it? Tell the truth and someone will give you a break?

Here’s the sign by my hotel

 This hotel has been operated by the same couple since 1959!  Before that the man’s father ran it and before that the grandfather ran it.

The bed there was as comfortable as mine there was no TV but there were lots of books and the Internet sucked so I couldn’t blog from there and I couldn’t plug from the dinosaur Townpark so that’s why I got behind in blogging.

Here’s some of what the hotel looked like


  
 I was their only guest that night. When it’s hunting season, its packed.

SLC to Denver.Day 3: Roosevelt UT to Dinosaur CO

I was on the road by eight and feeling good about it.

Right out of town was this cemetery. All the cemeteries around here-abouts (meaning, the wild west) have colored flowers on the graves. Of course, they are not real. You could not get a real flower like these within miles and miles and miles of here.


And lots of  cut steel metal art, For signage. It survives the elements. The sun and wind are tough enough, The winter seems like it would be tougher .

 And nothing but land for miles


  

Miles and miles and miles of beauty.

After 28 miles of all this earhly harmony and peace I got to the real town of Vernal


  

As you can see, i am nearing Dinosaur National Park. Utah is fantastic in many ways but not when it comes to highway shoulders.


Those bumps are so the 18 wheelers dont fall asleep. God bless those guys. All of them gave me tons of room. There is not a lot of oncoming or any huge amount of traffic on 40.

There is however a ton of roadkill in Utah: deer rabbitts skunks racoon big snakes and things I can’t identify. I don’t really get why they are on the side of the road. They get killed in the middle of the road, dont they? What do they do? With their last breath do they scrurry to the side of the road, or what?

In Vernal I bought lots of food to carry because I knew there would be no real food for the next 90 miles. I met the man who makes the sushi in the grocery store there. He was proud of it and happy I liked it. Asian fellow. Not a lot of Asians around here. Nice guy. Great sushi.


  
There were no towns between Vernal UT  and Dinosaur CO but there was evidence of more happening times in these remote areas


As I rode the sky got darker and darker and I could see storms happening on either side of me.

 I was afraid of the lightening. It seemed like I was the tallest thing on the horizon for as far as the eye could see.

I got rained on a bit but not much. I found out later that storms were so bad near Vernal that there was 3″ of hail on the road! Hail is hard to imagine because its way hot here and I havent had any, I mean NONE, shade thus entire trip.

I finally made it to Colorado

For some reason I thought Colorado was going to be enlightened in some way. Not so.

I was shocked when I got to Dinosaur.

It was a third world dump.

  
What hotels had been there were not anymore open. They were abandoned.  So I had to set up in the town park because there were no campgrounds. I booked a hotel that I was told was in Dinosaur but it was actually in Rangely which is 18 miles away. In a car 18 miles doesn’t seem like much. When I booked the room I asked them if they were on Highway 40 and they said they were but in fact they are on the intersecting Highway 134 so I was very bummed when I got done with my 64 miles and there was no hotel and a dump of a town (which was really just an intersection)  but it turned out that the city park was quite nice.

There were very clean free showers which people come from close to 100 miles around to use! Especially in hunting season and horse competition season. Quite a few people were using them now because the hang glider contest was in the area. Still, it wasn’t quite the rest I wanted after 64 miles of biking.


 This guy was my neighbor

That store is on the corner of highway 40 and Colorado 134 so it’s open 24 hours and most of the 18 wheelers turn off here. I didn’t get  much sleep but the coffee Here will be trucker real like really strong coffee.

Before the gas station is a place called “the depot” and the lady in there makes homemade ice cream so I had a chocolate milkshake that was one of the best in the entire world.

She had tons of Christian stuff in her place and a bunch of dinosaur stuff and books on the subject of evolution and she wasn’t nice. The word BELIEVE was prominently posted everywhere.

The word “believe” is a bit more understandable what they mean (in Jesus) than when you see hear the word “freedom” tossed around everywhere but still…what are these people talking about really? I see signs like “Freedom, thank a veteran”  I’m like uhhh, I just don’t It.

After the ice cream store I went to the liquor store because I wanted to buy a glass of wine and the lady in there was super nice and she had this beautiful moon necklace on and we chatted it up. For some reason, I told her about the unfriendly Christian lady.

She was all anout the unfriendly Christians in town and told the story about her adopted father who had been the town pastor for decades and how they meanly kicked him out overnight when he started to have dementia.

I ask her about her moon necklace and she tells me that she’s pagan; wiccan specifically. I tell her about my friends and I doing equinox and solstice rituals and how I was at a stonehenge in Avebury England on this summer solstice.

I tell her about my friend’s Facebook group called “One o’clock on the dot coven of  irreverent witchy business”. She then tells me that she is a for real witch from generations of witches and was in fact born with a veil. I don’t even know what that means.

She asks me where I’m staying and I tell her I’m staying in the town park and she expresses concern because she’s afraid there’s going to be a huge storm coming through and tells me I have no idea what kind of storms come through there.

She suggests I stay in her backyard or in her grandmother’s backyard and I thank her but I tell her I’m already all set up and I think I’m OK.

She writes down me her name and her phone number and gives it to me and makes me promise to call her if  “The Storm” comes in and she says she will drive by and pick me up right away!  Wow.

I try to drink the wine but I’m afraid it will keep me up so I don’t. I end up staying awake most of the night anyhow listening to the trucks.

SLC to Denver.Day2/Afternoon: Duchesne to Roosevelt

There is not so much to say about this part of the ride except that it was beautiful.

  Real estate is cheap here.

Here is what a difference water can make: irrigated land.

Un irrigated land


Because I knew I would reach my destination early I started to take lots of breaks and pictures of the road.

I especially like pictures of the roads intersecting  highway 40 going off into who knows what.


Nearing the end of the 50 some miles I stopped for a salt break because I could tell I needed  salt from so much sweating. As I was eating a pack of salted peanuts an old man in a sporty red car stopped on the other side of the road.

I had just taken a picture of this road.


He asked, “are you giving up for the day? ”  I said, “no just refueling, I’m needing to eat something”. So he says, “why don’t you come home to dinner?”

I thank him for the offer and tell him I have friends to meet in Roosevelt so he says, “OK “. And then his red car shoots down the road I have just photographed and my greasy salty hands can’t get the phone out quick enough to catch that.

But I caught another car I liked.


About ten miles out of Roosevelt, it starts to get very very windy. The big sky is getting darker and darker. I take off my sunglasses but I have to put them back on again because the wind is blowing all this stuff in my face and eyes.

Tumbleweeds are tumbling across the road and the whole 9 yards. The wind gathers a lot of momentum when it’s running across those vast expanses of beauty and hitting me hard from the side so I had to bicycle a certain speed or else it would knock me over. It was that strong.

I haven’t written much about the wind because the wind is either behind me or it’s in my face and it seems to be equally both so I’m not writing about it but this was different.

When an 18 wheeler passes me and scores of them have passed me on hwy 40, you feel a little gust of wind. It’s almost like a push from behind because you’re going in the same direction and that’s fun but this wind was hitting me broadside.

It was about to pour rain and at first that seem like a good thing because it would be like an early shower until I remembered all of the trees by the road I’ve hit seen that have been hit by lightning.

I haven’t taken pictures of them because they’re not pretty but I’ll try to get a picture of one so you can see what it looks like.

Heres the dark sky. 

Most of the fires in Utah are started by lightning. I pedalled hard to reach Roosevelt.

And I made it in time.


I booked into a luxury hotel for under hundred dollars and it is marvelous! I have a room across from the swimming pool and the hot tub. I even have a bathtub in my room and a large flat screen TV which I haven’t turned on.
After I took my shower and washed my clothes in the sink I went to the grocery store and got my food for dinner tonight and breakfast tomorrow.

The next town is 28 miles out tomorrow morning so I’m going to try to get a really good night sleep in this really big bed. My destination tomorrow, Dinosaur Colorado, is 64 miles away which is a bit intimidating.

SLC to Denver.Day2/ morning: The ranch to Duchesne UT

Well I left paradise at the ranch and Johnny and Donna a bit reluctantly because they were so great.

Johnny took me back up the canyon from his ranch to hwy 40. (Note cool belt from clothing business days)

It’s kind of like Highway One in BigSur in that you think there’s nothing on the other side of the road from the ocean but when you go off on one of those roads, there’s all kinds of houses tucked in here and there.

This picture is Johnny dropping me off. He also showed me a great app where I can see what my altitude is.

He hates having his picture taken. As soon as the camera is present he freezes up. In person, this guy is very attractive. For all he’s done, there was nothing pompous about him at all. Both of them had amazing stories and it was a big joy pleasure inspiration and blessing to have met them.

I did about 43 miles yesterday (w a big pass) and am doing a lttle over 50 today with no huge climbs. I’m now in Duchesne (about 26 miles) and am eating breakfast and powering phone.  Johnny gave me a banana, an apple and trail mix packages to get me to Duchesne.

I am going to go to the town museum and then take off for Roosevelt UT, 28 relatively easy miles away where I have a hotel reservation.

There was nothing from the ranch to here but beauty and this is LITERALLY a one block town. I love that in this one block, they have a museum!!


    

SLC to Denver.Day1/part 2: From the Summit to the ranch

I made it to the sumitt at 11:15 and my destination at strawberry reservoir was only 6 miles away so I hung out at the lodge at the summit texting and then I called strawberry lodge and canceled because I didn’t want the day end at 1 o’clock

  So I decided to try for Duchesne which is 50 miles away and Fruitland which is closer. Five miles past Strawberry  I start to have a stick in my right side.  I’ve never had them before so I didn’t know what to do and it was excruciating and I got off and walked my bike for a while even though it wasn’t hilly and then I got three texts in a row and I realized “oh my goodness this is not nowhere, there’s Internet!”

 So I Google and I find out what to do; which is a lot like a Self-Breema exercise or even more like kundalini yoga. Riding with my hand over my head stretching that side and breathing specifically.

It is getting quite a bit better and I think that I will actually maybe make it when a man and his wife pull up in the car and he asks me if I am OK

I say not really and explain about my side cramp and he offers for them to take me to the ranch where I can camp which is nearby. He suggests for me to leave my bike there and come with them to the ranch where he can get his pick up and then drive back and get the bike.

I offer that I’d rather ride my bike and he can get the pick up and we can meet that way. After he leaves I continue to do my exercise and my stitch continues to improve. I pass several entrances to campground roads that I could have stopped at which is good to know because I would have made it without the kindness of strangers but thank the mother of God that I didn’t have to.

So Johnny comes with his pick up which I expected to be old and beat up (why?) and its not. It’s top of the line nice. We turn off Hwy 40 onto a small side road and go down and down and down the windy road to the end which is perfectly their house.

Well it turns out this man Johnny and his wife Donna are just incredibly amazing people. First thing about them is: one is instantly completely comfortable with them. it’s almost strange.There such a warmth and familiarity about them.

They are amazing here’s one of the things he has done. Johnny has been the captain of search and rescue for this entire county for 25 years!

The short story is, he found me and and rescued me. Donna did the same. They both noticed me when I was climbing the summit earlier in the morning. She was worried about me I think, God bless her, and so was he.

Johnny has also been a private pilot. They owned a cattle ranch which is where I’m sleeping also sheep and goats. And they grew hay professionally.

They’re real comfortable team: 54 years married with four children and lots of grandchildren and lots of great-grandchildren.

They are 74 and they’re in amazing shape. They also owned the Heber City hardware store and they owned had a Western clothing  apparel business. And I think he was mayor of Herber City too at one point.

This is their log cabin ranch home complete with a river stone chimney.

And this is them. As you can see there both very cute.
This is the view out my tent

  Goodnight

SLC to Denver.Day 1/part 1: Heber City to Daniels Pass, Utah

imageThis is Josh dropping me off at my campground.imageThis is Josh Van Jura in his garage in front of all his bike race numbers.

My new bike is not my old bike Silver. Her brakes are in a different place and this place I am very used too so my instinctual reach is wrong each time. Im working on that. Ditto for gear changes.

Woke up a bit scared for todays climb. Up at 6 and at breakfast at 7. Couldn’t eat it all so I wrapped up half of it in a napkin which I forgot after filling up water bottles in the bathroom. I left the extra food for later there. Its an hour later here and I just don’t eat breakfast that early and I guess I’m not even awake yet.

I am out of the bay area which means the coffee is weak and there are more dry cleaners than tattoo parlors. There were even dry cleaner drive throughs in salt lake city. I have never seen so many dry cleaners.

In San francisco if you are the guy wearing the suit and tie you’re not the guy making the money. Now the Guy in the jeans with the tech T-shirt that’s the guy making money.

Starting out after a few miles I realized i didnt have my bike shorts on! as I never wear them at home so I stopped at the Port-of-Entry station where big semis stop.imageGuy there was nice. Says he sees all kinds of people like me doing this. To me thats encouraging. He says he knows I will make it and promises to follow blog. That helps. Ah, the kindness of strangers.imageI talk to flowers at the side of the road and animals.image imageAnd myselfimage image

At The restaurant at the top of the summit has glass lamps with copper cut outs! incredible right?

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SLC to Denver.Day 0: Back on Track, Camping in Heber City

Yesterday, when I  landed at the Salt Lake City airport, my phone came alive and I saw a voicemail was waiting for me. I listened to it starting in the little tube you walk through from the plane to the terminal. It was from the bike shop I shipped my bicycle to telling me that it never arrived. I spent the rest of yesterday’s afternoon trying to figure out what happened and what to do. I knew where the food court was from the time Noah and I were here. I go this and that kind of food over a couple hours spent calling all kinds of numbers trying all kinds of things> But to no avail.

I started the next day with sad tears and three locks on #113 Motel 6 door in the bad-ish  neighborhood.  I had planned to spend the night swimming in little America hotels’ pool but I decided on the cheap side because I wasn’t sure what was happening.hey it was only from there I went to Starbucks carrying my pannier bags and had 2 grande cappuccinos.

At Starbucks I called a sister of a friend of mine who I’d never met, Roz Newmark who help me tremendously. She has long distance cycled with her husband extensively in this area and lives in Salt Lake City.  Between Josh and Roz I know about different bike options and different bike shops and I decide on the closest and the cheapest as I’m walking around the city (a mile or so) in my flip flops carrying my panniers

Long story short I buy a TREK 520 from Salt Lake Cyclery. Roy helped me and they were fantastic I got such a deal. So here is my advertisement for Salt Lake Cyclery:  They were the best. I got fully outfitted better than I was before for $1500.

I am now ending my day in my tent in the campsite it’s really really nice with a swimming pool and a hot tub that’s open at night.

Josh took me here. God bless him. This is a little where noah and I left off from our bike trip here two years ago..  I passed by the places Noah and I were and it was a little painful missing him but the swimming pool at night made me miss my kids the most. There is nothing better than being a mom with your kids at a pool late at night in a campground.

 I am now here, 45 miles from salt lake city and one mile outside of Heber City. Josh took me here. He picked me up from the bike shop and we drove his electric car to his home near Park city and then we got his other car because the electric car was out of electricity. It was really fun to see his house. It’s an Alpine mountain house and he has two jobs. he’s an important engineer with the Utah government and he also started a company that makes cool bike bags. It was fun to see it, especially his sewing studio and his blackboard painted refrigerator.  The garage was superb. It was like a sports equipment store. He absolutely does everything .

Noah and I met him two summers ago after we had just ridden up Emigrant Canyon and over Pawley’s pass which is a 3000 foot climb that we were totally unprepared for with the altitude adjustment.  Noah and I were walking our bikes because we couldn’t get in the bicycle position any longer without having massive spasms in our legs and Josh stopped his car and said “Are you guys OK ?” and we said “No” and he helped us and here he is helping me again! You see, he has trendous time demands and still goes out of his way to be helpful to strangers. He’s really an incredible guy. Left home at 13. Can you imagine?
So here I am now in the valley I’m surrounded by mountains on all sides of me I’m at 7000 feet and tomorrow 1 flat mile out of here and then it’s 18 miles up to a pass that is a lot higher. I forget how much but how much but folks around here talk bout the “pass” with respect. The views I’m going to see are going to be so wonderful as in full-of-wonder, as in breathtakingly amazing and huge and all around me.

The sky above me is the biggest sky.  you can see sky 360° here.  it’s so marvelous