Sunday, May 31, 2009

Fernely to Lovelock NV

Here is what it looked like

The ride from Fernley worked me pretty good today On interstate 80, the road way itself was excellent. Up at 5AM, I left the hotel I stayed in at 6 AM and enjoyed a peaceful desert freeway and the lands around it made cool by the huge thunderstorm I missed being indoors last nite….

I mean it was so ferocious that I saw puddles everywhere. And to give you an idea how serious the speed divots are that warn errant drivers should they cross the fog line, several inches of water still stood inside them for many miles as I pedaled away.

And I pedaled and I pedaled. And as always, the same 50-inch gear the whole way. Since there was little to distract me from my pedaling effort out here, at times when I didn’t focus my mental energy on other thoughts, turning the pedals at times became laborious. But usually not for long.

I found great humor in all the bungie cord wealth out here. If it wasn’t so hard to stop and then start my loaded bike, I’d probably have 50 or 60 of these load strapping devices to try to figure out what to do with. I did however stop for a stainless steel spoon. I’ve been using the plastic one I got from Marilyn and Sue back in Placerville. I also stopped for a pair of mini-channel locks! Just what I wanted, I added them to the 8” quality crescent wrench I found yesterday.

Nor is this desert as difficult as the one I rode through Eastern Oregon or Southern Idaho back in 1979. Or for that matter, through Southern California or Arizona on my second 1986 ride. The road itself is very nice to ride on. And there is a lot more life out here. I even heard birds chirping away before the cars took over.

As for the Truckee River, I don’t see it any more. The train line and telephone/telegraph poles I talked about yesterday disappeared from view until the last third of the day. They, as does I-80, follow the contour of the mountains that dominate the landscape of this, the most mountainous state in the union.  And in doing so, the wide sweeping turns they take send them through the valleys that ancient rivers carved through the mammoth hills that rise everywhere one looks.

Staying at the Lovelock Inn, in Lovelock, NV. Feeling blessed for WIFI as I recharge my batteries in the full knowing that I need a Bigger Power to keep all this going………

THX 4 all of U

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Reno to Fernley, NV

Up at 6 at Mike’s house, I did an unusual shower to kick off my ride day. Soon, Mike and I were sharing the eggs with tofu chorizo that he whipped up for us. And at about the same time, the famous Tim Healion, promoter of the Tour de Nez bike race series here in Reno showed up. Too much wow as he and I had talked a lot over the years (6) but never met.

Soon the three of us were riding to the downtown Reno Truckee River bike trail. Along the way, we stopped at Tim’s brother’s house. Jeffrey had just moved to Reno with his Panamanian wife,  Ana, and her two kids, Joana and Jose. He used to surf professionally.

He felt the magic of this ride and kept asking me if there was anything I needed. Jokingly, I told him I needed shoes with a 3.5” sole. In size 10. He had a pair! And he insisted that I take them…….

WOW. I rode with his good mojo on my feet the rest of the 56 miles I logged today. Mike left from Jeffrey’s house and Tim guided me out the river path for a mile or so past its downtown beginning. From there on out I was  on my own on a green-lined river within which the trail sat for the next 7 miles.

It was a good way to leave Reno because next up for me was an Interstate 80 that began with rumble strips right where the bike traveler needs to be. I almost turned around and began to set out for US 50. More mountain passes and less water services were better than this.

As I thought about quitting this road, I thought about Steve Stevens. Why would he recommend it and why would Nevada State bike coordinator, Bill Story, tell me the rumble strips had been fixed?

I soldiered on. Finally seven miles later the pavement divots moved deeper and narrower next to the fog line! Yahoo, I could relax a little bit. I began to notice the history that this path cut. Below me, I could see the rail line that Thomas Stevens used when he became the first man, in 1884, to cycle across America. However, I could not see any dirt path where he was supposed to have ridden. All I saw were rocks and sheer drops from the rail bed that formed the first transcontinental railroad.

I also saw the telephone poles that made up the first transcontinental phone line. While all the while the Truckee River blessed all of this with a small ribbon of green. And this has been my view all the way to Greenly where I am staying in a Super 8 motel so I can get work done. Here for example is the map for today’s travels

But unless I start getting some cash flow coming in once again, I will soon run out of money. I spent $95 on food and a room with internet today. I might be able to get through Nevada, where friends of friends do not exist, at that rate, but after that I may have to call it a ride.

I cannot do the work that needs to be done from city parks or under bridge hollows. That is not what this ride is all about. I’ve done the adventure style ride before. This one has the express intent of collecting data for a SF to Boston bikeway as I meet and exchange with the city leaders and bicycle shakers and movers from each of the areas through which it passes..

Btw Do get to the Mayors’ Ride Schedule. Lori Yung has posted a lot of the pictures I have been taking there………..