zondag 7 augustus 2011

Made it to Miles city

Today is our second rest day and we have access to Internet. And fast Internet too here at the KOA. History repeats itself though: everywhere we go, Internet gets slow (and crashes). The amount of Photos, blogposts and occasional tweets and Facebook uploads are probably responsible.
So here I am, hanging in my hammock and writing a post by means of a smartphone app at 6.15 PM, because almost everybody sleeps and I have all bandwidth to myself.

Yesterday was a long day with 240km and some short but steep climbing. My Garmin indicated 13% for a while and I was grinding my chainring as well as my teeth. We mostly had long stretches of rolling hills and the wind at the back, so we could cruise at 38 km/h for a long time. At some point I became the leader of a small and changing group, being the only one with a track on my GPS. Greg rode with me all day and we had good fun, making jokes and enjoying the beautiful scenery along the Yellowstone river. I had made up an easy way to remember where the rest stops were. The first was at Custer and the second at Forsythe. That's easy: general Custer and the Forsythe saga :-) when you keep your eyes on the Gps and not on the road signs it doesn't really help, but by accident I had to make a pee stop at the junction near Custer. We had started a bit late and Felix stopped with the van from Greg next to us, so we decided to use the facilities at hand to make a picknick instead of going into Custer. Greg made us a hot drink in the van and I dug up some muffins from my Mango. The pick-nick was all complete with red ants, that roamed near our vehicles. We donated them some muffin crumbs. The fauna sure was abundantly present. On the quiet frontage roads of Interstate 12, grasshoppers jumped into our rides, found a high spot (my shirt) and jumped out again. Accelerating this process proved useless, so I have come up with the theory that there are Always 6 Grasshoppers in a Velomobile. When one jumps in, another will immediately jump out. No worries. Volkers' Dodge was covered with squashed grasshoppers, claiming he had swept the roads for us, but little does he know about Harrys' law: Always 6 grasshoppers, no more!

Felix had found a stop for us in the shade, but it came it a price: the loud noises of numerous insects in the trees near Yellowstone river. Nobody knew the exact name of these insects, but they have hard shells and hatch from a hole in the ground every 17 years and then all climb up a tree and make loud cricket-like noises. Not that you would notice this long cycle, because they do not hatch at the same time.

Apart from a fall from an F40 rider on railroad tracks, several flats, two chain-drops on a hill and Benji with failing brakes having to turn the wrong way after a fast downhill ending at a T-junction, the trip (yawn) was rather uneventful. So I'm going to sleep late till 11 now and perhaps do a bit of wrenching later. Good morning, ZZZZ.

Note: I later saw Benjis' brake, it was literally smoked, the metal discoulered from the heat druing braking.

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