Off the Grid Bicycle Tour Update: Day 26
Here’s another update from my new cycling friend Rob Greenfield who is currently cycling across the United States….totally off the grid. He’s impressed and amazed me over the past week of knowing him, and I just had to post his Day 26 journal entry seeing as he mentions me in the post.
Off the Grid Bicycle Tour: Day 26
by Rob Greenfield
It was a long night with an undesirably minimal amount of sleep. The night was cold and to conserve heat I had to fold myself up into a ball. This position did not give my weary legs a chance to recover and between the cold and aching legs I found myself awake for too much off the night. Alas the morning did come but it was a cloudy cold one. When I awoke at 6:00 I thought about… breaking down camp but instead spent a few hours in my tent on my computer.
Even with the cold, it as an enjoyable morning in the snowy Rocky Mountains. I was on the road by 9:30 and was happy to leave the 9,400 feet of elevation and spend a good portion of the forty miles pedaled in the morning descending. The windy road was likely the most enjoyable and fun that I have pedaled yet in the last four weeks of biking and the sun came out to greet me.
Throughout the day I was accompanied by birds of prey soaring along side me guiding me through the Rocky Mountain flats as they scanned the green pastures for pray. Mid day I was fortunate to see a hawk succeed in its hunt and come up with a small rodent in its talons. A phone call from my new friend, Darryl Kotyk, on the island of Grenada 3,500 miles away, added brightness to my day. He is the creator of the wonderful blog, Loving the Bike, (http://lovingthebike.com) and has been posting updates on my journey.
In the early afternoon rain decided to change my plans of pedaling 80-100 miles today. Instead I found myself ducked under an overhang of a local bar where I spent an hour and a half waiting for the rain and hail to pass. That it did around 4:30 and I continued onward somewhat lethargically but feeling good that I had already done a fair distance of riding.
Three individuals at the bar had told me the road would continue down hill to Granby but the next sixteen miles were quite the opposite of downhill. In town I took a break and then continued on with the intentions of making it to Winter Park 20 miles away before nightfall. Just outside of Granby the climbing resumed past herds of beautiful cows in the pasture and more water fell from the sky.
It was dark and gloomy but quite enjoyable. The sun just barely peaked out over the foothills behind me creating a majestic sun shower and in front of me a magnificent rainbow presented itself. I was astonished to see it growing across the sky and increasing in brightness each second. It was a fabulous near end to the night but I was still 10 miles from the comforts of my tent and sleeping bag where I hoped to make it an early night.
As the sun faded completely behind the foothills I continued on and a new set of rain clouds opened up on to me. It was down right miserable but at the same time down right awesome to be exposed to the harsh elements.
Many of us forget that we are a part of this earth but the harsh elements make for a good reminder. The elements became unbearable and I was happy to see a sign for a YMCA where I pulled in to find they had rooms available.
I thought about taking one but realized it would likely compromise my mission even if I did not use any electricity or water. They would likely clean the room and wash the sheets even if I did not use them and this would use water from on the grid.
Instead I explored the large complex and found a basement room with a back entrance where I set up my sleeping bag and sleeping bag. This simple accommodation kept me out of the rain and the cold and gave me confidence that I would get a fair nights rest.
For more on Rob’s adventure and additional pictures and stories, visit his facebook page.
The awesome photo above was done by Brent Martin.