After yesterday’s big effort, I needed an easy day and Utah provided it.
I’m finding that eating a substantial breakfast makes a big difference in how the day goes. Good thing diners were invented.
Riding north out of Cedar City by 8:15 I was heading down for about 15 miles on a straight, two-lane road. Yesterday’s mountains were to my right. An unknown, much less impressive hill was to my right. A gentle wind nudged me along.
After cruising at 15-18 mph, I had to climb to a “summit” at 6,570 feet. A month ago this would have worried me and stressed my body. Today, I barely noticed the climb.
Bike touring does that to you. At home I’d consider a 1,000+ foot climb and riding over 50 miles to be a tough day’s work. On s tour it’s called a rest day.
The ride from the top to Minersville under clear skies and warm dry temperatures was marred only by a dude in a pickup truck who decided it would be amusing to lay on his horn as he passed me. All the way to town I thought how fitting it would be to key his shiny truck. Unfortunately I left my keys at home which raises the question, “Can you spork a truck?”
If there was food to eat Minersville, I couldn’t find it. In the process of my search I missed a turn to stay on route. No worries. I found a very nice two-lane highway that took a more direct route to my destination, Milford, Utah.
I was now headed west so the winds had little effect on my speed and effort. I passed through farmers’ fields and vast expanses of sage brush.
In Milford I stopped to stock up on provisions for tomorrow then checked into the Travelodge on the western side of town. As I was told by east bound riders, the motel offers a steep discount for bike tourists. It’s s fine room for $45. I suppose they’ll make up the difference from my trips to the 24-hour diner on the property. One of the Hopkins riders told me that their mushroom Swiss burger was excellent. It was, especially followed by a root beer float.
Lunch gave me the opportunity to do laundry. (I’d been sink washing my clothes for a week.) I ate wearing my rain jacket and pants. As Joe Walsh said, I was “washing everything I own except my shoes.”
Tomorrow I leave Utah and enter Nevada, the land of whiskey, weed, and harlots. More germaine to the tour are some interesting new features to the route. First, the town’s from here to Carson City are spaced far apart. Each day will have at least one climb as I head west through basin and range country. And temperatures are rising into the 90s. High winds are forecast for the second half of this week.
Tomorrow will feature 84 miles with no services and three climbs similar to today. I’m ready. I got 6 liters of water and all kinds of munchies (Clif Bars, Fig Newtons, trailmix, chewy granola bars, and bean dip (peanut butter is getting old) on The Mule.
Miles today: 56.5
Tour miles: 2,238.5
Top speed: 27.7