Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Into the desert

Today I rode a total of 92 miles in 5 hours 49 minutes, and bested my max speed at 40.5 mph.
I started the day with a visit to Deux Gros Nez. A bicycle racing themed cafe in Reno with excellent food, and lots of great cycle racing memorablilia on the walls and ceiling. I ate one poached egg and a plate full of delicious baguette french toast, plus a glass a "everything green" juice. The gal running the counter (Jess) was super friendly, and she told me about the Busycle. A pedal powered 15 passenger vehicle that's appearing in cities across the country during the month of June. Apparently, the bus isn't actually traveling between cities under pedal power, but it's still cool.
I jumped on my bike and headed out of town... The girls caught up with me about 15 miles outside of Reno, where we turned onto the Geiger Grade, a big hill leading up
to Virginia City, a historic little town in the hills that's now a bit of a tourist attraction. We encountered some very strong gusting winds as we reached the top of the hill and descended the other side cautiously. We expected to encounter some rain today, and we did. Nothing too drastic, but we did get to test out our rain gear.

Cool bicycle cafe, lots of autographed jerseys and cool bike racing videos playing on a dvd screen in the corner. (good food, too)

Snow capped mountains above the outskirts of Reno.

Climbing the Geiger grade. Here's a VIDEO taken midway up the grade.

Look very closely to see Amanda pedaling up the grade ahead.

Here's a detail.....

The "Bucket of Blood" saloon in Virginia City. It was so windy here, while I was zipping up my wind breaker, a gust of air snatched my helmet and sunglasses from a bench and threw them down an alley next to the corner where I stood. I had to chase them half a block.

Abby and Amanda get suited up for the next leg.

After getting on highway 50, we passed through Dayton, and I realized that I was riding right past my aunt Judy's house! I called to see if she was home, then took a detour to spend an hour with her before riding east. This is the little road leading to her house.

Highway 50, with its deep rumble strips, made it hard to ride comfortably on the shoulder.

Beautiful desert landscape. Mercifully cool temperatures due to cloud cover.

It's different riding on a road that stretches straight to the horizon. Thankfully, for the last 50 miles of our ride, the wind was more or less at our backs. While a bit gusty and unpredicatable, we were able to keep a good 17-20 mph pace for quite a while.

A giant reservoir behind a dam next to the 50. We'll be riding on this highway for many days to come en route to Salt Lake City.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

The video wouldn't run. Darn!

11:12 PM  
Anonymous Kim Carroll said...

Hey man,

Really inspiring (photo) journal of your trip......

Missing you and your Bass talents right now. This minute actually !!! Where are you ??? Help
Just finished my first (of many I hope) co-composing gig w/ Harry last night. I'm really stoked...!!
Topanga is still here

Best of luck


8:48 PM  

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