Total miles today: 322
End of day miles on this tank: 146
Backtracked 30 miles to Boise City, OK for gas. Checked the internet and saw that rider #3 is on the way. Interesting coincidence, we were in Boise City OK, he was in Boise, IA.
166 miles, 3.4 gal
2:47. Trinidad, CO
140 miles, 2.75 gal
We are in mountain time now.
4:49 holed up at an out of business filling station while we wait for a spot storm to pass.
8:30 Zapata Falls Campground
We are at 9100+ ft elevation. We have a fantastic view of the valley below. I bought a little Jim Beam along the way and am enjoying a few after dinner drinks. I can’t take part in the other popular thing on Colorado, so this will do.
My back is sore. I’ve been riding tense for the last 2 days and it’s taking its toll. My butt is sore. I’ve been standing as much as possible, even when there is no handling related need to.
I think I could do this indefinately. I don’t need the trappings of modern life. A little food, a little water, and shelter from the elements is all that’s required.
One of the most striking things about this trip is the way the environment changes. Occasionally, it’s a dramatic bam in the face. In general, it’s gradual. Subtle. The kinds of plants, animals, and rocks that I see blend with each other where regions meet, but eventually each region becomes distinct from those that I’ve passed through days ago. I stand here now at a place that is completely alien to my point of origin, yet I can’t point to any line between the two.
On to the day’s events.
We started in Oklahoma, then crossed into New Mexico. One section of road had a fresh layer of CA6 limestone on it, and it had been wetted. It was slick. Had it not been for my newly learned technique, I would have eaten rocks several times. I stayed upright. The new Mexico segment was only 70 miles, but it was spectacular. The camera simply can’t do it justice. The camera can’t capture the scope of what your eyes can see. The space, the colors, the brutality and beauty.
This sign is at a fork in the road. Right is a driveway, left is a nasty hill climb with the Colorado border at the top.
Go straight for 10 miles, then turn left.
Our campsite for tonight.
Tomorrow we meet up with a third rider. Both of us are anxious about how this person will work out. Will he show up wearing jeans and sneakers? Has he ridden anywhere other than the burbs? Maybe his experience and skill will humble both of us. Tomorrow will tell.
It’s late, I’m going to sleep soon. I am surrounded by the sound of 20 somethings chatting around their camps, the smell of camp fires, and the fleeting but pungent aroma of something else.