Saturday, June 9, 2007

No Water Anywhere! Day 7

Today we rode 73 miles further into the Nevada desert. We crossed arid lands, including the 40 mile stretch from where the Humboldt River disappears into the Humboldt Sink (Yup, it just drops into the earth) to the fresh water supplies 40 miles to the west. The emigrants to California usually took two days to walk across this waterless plain, and people/cattle/horses suffered cruelly. Today, thanks to "pedal power" and a tailwind, that stretch took us just over two hours!

We rode again part of the time on the interstate. Last night, at dinner, ~12 or 14 people (including me) raised their hands when asked if they had a flat tire. Today, only Andrew in our group of 10 or so suffered that indignity.

Cars and trucks are mostly courteous as they fly past us. Many wave or give a friendly "honk". And when folks find out where we're going and what we're doing, they are amazed. And for some unknown reason, they often express more astonishment to me than to the thinner riders. Go figure!

We are staying in another motel/casino tonight. I walked a mile to a laundromat, and a friendly lady gave me a ride back to the hotel after talking to me there. Nice folk.

Pictured is Erin, with whom I rode many miles today while our friends were ahead or behind. Erin had only ridden a few hundred miles on her bike, and never more than 35 miles in a day before this trip. Now, she's ridden 91 miles in a day, and--like the rest of us--has cycled 500 miles in a week, climbed the Sierra Nevada mountains and travelled well into the Nevada desert.

Like I said, these folks are amazing!

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