Bike Tour 2022: Day off in Hutchinson

I have tendency to grind myself into the ground on bike tours. In 2018, I rode from DC to St. Paul, 1,600 miles, without a break. Then I rode another 2,200 miles from St. Paul to Camano Island, Washington without another day off. In 2019 I rode 1,485 miles from northern Indiana to Salida, CO before shutting it down.

It’s rainy and cold and the lodging is free so I decided to take a break after nine days on the road. Even after a big breakfast with 8 cups of coffee I was groggy all day. I thought I might be getting Covid. Then I had lunch, a short nap, a shower, a burger, and two amber ales. All better. If I had Covid, I’ve found the best cure ever!

Speaking of breaks there’s a bit of play in my left pedal. The head mechanic at the town bike shop said it’s nothing to worry about. And besides, we don’t have the parts to work on it. Just buy new pedals. Translation: there’s no profit in overhauling pedals.

I’ve broken two left pedals on this bike on tours in the past. I have no idea why. My plan is to ride on to Pratt tomorrow. If the pedal fails I’ll buy another pair at WalMart down there. So it goes.

I gather from the comments on my tour posts that I have sounded rather negative. I’m having fun. Really. Problems arise on every bike tour. You do what you can to solve them and keep pedaling (or walking). The other day after the winds blew me off the road for the 14th time I would have gladly taken a ride. There are worse fates.

Last night’s storms were insanely intense. Most of the action was South and East of Hutchinson where some areas had 3 inches of rain per hour. Noah, phone home.

There were a few short lived squalls here as well. As of 7 pm, all is good. The sun is out.

I have an itinerary but the dates are flexible. I don’t have to be in Canon City, CO for two weeks. It’s about 600 miles, about 50 miles per day with a day off.

Tomorrow’s weather looks fantastic. I should make it to Pratt easily. Tailwinds rock. If all goes well, I might even forge ahead another 30 miles to Medicine Lodge so that I can take advantage of favorable winds the next day.

One big plus of bike tours is that you can eat just about anything you want and lose weight. Speaking of eating, there’s a bag of M&Ms over there with my name on it. Time to get my feed bag on.

Miles today: 3 running errands around town. Unloaded. The Mule felt like a rocket ship.

Tour mileage: 627

6 thoughts on “Bike Tour 2022: Day off in Hutchinson

  1. I didn’t gather any negativity from yo ur posts, more real life. Including the nitty gritty.

    You found the perfect spot for a rest day. Sending good vibes for tomorrows ride!

  2. Hi John,

    Get the best pedals you can stomach, even if they are flat pedals. Any Shimano is always better than generic. Pedals lead a very hard life!

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