B TO B CENTURY
We were up, had eaten a full breakfast, loaded luggage, pumped up our tires, and were on the road by 6:15 am this morning. We had the Burley to Blackfoot, ID “century plus 10 mile” ride ahead of us. We all knew that EVERY 110 mile day is tough!
There was more bucolic scenery as we looked over the potato fields toward the mountains–some with a little snow on them–in the distant background. We had some quiet country roads to ride, although the road surface was a little rough most of the morning. We think the tar and gravel roads robbed us of some speed on today’s 110 mile route.. The sun was rising on what turned out to be a beautiful Saturday . At one stretch we were on the loneliest rural road possible. Tim (ME) wondered why they had even BUILT a road there. We could see for miles in all directions ; just sagebrush, grassland and occasionally some cattle grazing We spread out and were able to ride and talk.
There were another 6 or 7 cattle guards to cross in this open-range area. I am getting better at crossing them without losing any teeth, but they do give me a jolt (especially at the bottom of a hill).
At the SAG today there was conversation about the current World Cup matches. The UK guys were excited, the French family was anxious, but the German couple was celebrating yesterday’s victory. Anja wore (removable) tattoos of the German flag on her cheek last night at dinner. Of course, we have also been talking about the Tour de France and the sad situation with the allegations of drugging in the sport. Sad.
We were never far from the Snake River or the interstate highway–we saw both from time to time. We stopped at Register Rock Park at the 45 mile mark. On the large boulder there the early pioneers in the 1860's carved their names or initials on the way to Portland, OR. Early graffiti!
The town of American Falls had a dam and reservoir for recreational boating and fishing. We then passed through the most desolate, quiet to the point of UNOCCUPIED, towns of Aberdeen (where we had ice cream), Springfield and Rockford. It was along stretch into Blackfoot. We were just hammering out the miles. The last 20 miles are the toughest.
As we entered our host city of Blackfoot biking on Rt 26, we were chased by horses running beside us inside a fenced area. Keeping our pace they trotted right up to the fence corner.
We welcomed Dale (AZ) to the ride group tonight at dinner. He is a fellow Cross Country Challenge rider and a member of our Team Rails to Trails. I presented him with his RTC jersey at route rap.
Dinner took place on the lawn outside the hotel where a caterer had set up a barbeque chicken and lasagna dinner...picnic style. Fun!
We are pleased to have a short day tomorrow—we all have tired legs and sore butts from today’s century plus. We were on the road 8 hours today–7 hours on the bike.
Enjoying the group and the cycling,