Great day in the saddle.
Man oh man… I really dig this bike. The more I ride it the younger I get.
I may never stop riding it!
Sitting in my hotel room… my One-Night-Stand… my $100.00 hooker… I have found that the “Comfort Inn” franchise of “one-night-stands” is as good as any.
I have a ground floor room so no stairs. My lovely machine sits outside my room…
I know, I sound like a foolish old fart. And I am. But, allow me to explain… the sense of accomplishment after a ride like today. I know, the accomplishment is similar to peeing your pans in a dark suit – you feel better but no one will notice.
But this ride is an accomplishment for me. I thought I’d struggle with it all and each and every day is easier than the last.
Sorta like riding horses… it can’t much worse than the first day!
400 solid miles behind me today.
Woke at 4, in the saddle at 6. First stop was a quick refill near Evanston, Wyoming. Straight on toward Salt Lake City. Through the labyrinth which is the I80 maze. Followed Ron’s advice and found the place by the airport where there were heaps of hotels and a Perkins. Refilled and ran on toward Wendover. Refilled again and got a very, very bad coffee. Big truck stop place. Advertised as the best cup of coffee around. Took ages to sort and pay for and it was not that good. It did take a while so I was ready to ride and the coffee was forgotten after I hit 75 mph.
Somewhere in this changing landscape I stopped at a place named “west- something” and refilled and drained and rode on. I crossed another time zone. Now in Pacific Time. I arrived at Elko Nevada at noon local time. 1 PM in my starting time zone. I’d run a solid 7 hours. Considering all my stops and breaks worth 1.5 hours, I did 400 miles in 5.5 hours. Averaging a bit better than 70 mph.
So I hit Elko at noon. I was thinking of riding further but decided to stay. I was up early. I am fatiguing. I can do another 100 miles but I am not in a rush.
I find the local “Comfort Inn” and get a room but cannot check in until 2pm. So I dump my gear and have a look at ol Elko…
– quote – unquote-
Elko (Shoshoni: Natakkoa, ‘Rocks Piled on One Another’) is a city in Elko County, Nevada, United States. The population was 18,297 at the 2010 census. It is the county seat of Elko County. The city straddles the Humboldt River.
Elko is the principal city of the Elko Micropolitan Statistical Area, a micropolitan area that covers Elko and Eurekacounties and had a combined population of 46,942 at the 2000 census. It is the largest city for over 130 miles (210 km) in all directions, making it, as its city motto states, “The Heart of Northeast Nevada”.
It is home to Great Basin College, as well as to the National Weather Service Weather Forecast Office serving most of northern and central Nevada.
The path I have been traveling is an age-old byway that traverses an amazing landscape…
I picked this trail up in Kearney Nebraska and am heading to Sacramento.
Known as the Oregon – California Trail is was created by the Bison, used by the humans and turned into steel and concrete initially by Abe Lincoln and later by others. There is a rich history here.
I rode with the rising sun in my rear view mirror this morning. I was chilled until the sun rose and heated the air.
I rode through the wind ravaged buttes and natural monoliths that is the Great Divide. There is a starkness to this magnificent land. And a changling-ness. You can’t trust a land that can bake you one day and freeze you the same night.
Castle Rock Wyoming…
Coming down the western slope we end up in the lowlands of the Great Salt Lake.
-quote – unquote-
The Great Salt Lake, located in the northern part of the U.S. state of Utah, is the largest salt water lake in the Western Hemisphere, and the fourth-largest terminal lake in the world. In an average year the lake covers an area of around 1,700 square miles (4,400 km2), but the lake’s size fluctuates substantially due to its shallowness. For instance, in 1963 it reached its lowest recorded level at 950 square miles (2,460 km²), but in 1988 the surface area was at the historic high of 3,300 square miles (8,500 km2). In terms of surface area, it is the largest lake in the United States that is not part of the Great Lakes region.
The lake is the largest remnant of Lake Bonneville, a prehistoric pluvial lake that once covered much of western Utah. The three major tributaries to the lake, the Jordan, Weber, and Bear rivers together deposit around 1.1 million tons of minerals in the lake each year. As it is endorheic (has no outlet besides evaporation), it has very high salinity, far saltier than sea water, and its mineral content is constantly increasing.
I smiled as I rode past the Bonneville Speedway’s turn off.
Elko is cool. I like the vibe…
Found my attention snagged by this sign…
Toured the town a bit more and checked into my room.
As one night stands go this is a good’un…
My riding pants are airing out on the door. I have one change of clean clothes and shall save them. Recycling is the best I can do for now.
Tomorrow may be my last day in the saddle.
I feel so confident after today I am going to attempt the last day in one-run for tomorrow…
I know after today I can do the miles. So, with a big-arsed grin I say…