Cycling is a way of life……

22 08 2011

So today I have been thinking, wow, I can’t believe its the end of Day 26. We have been on the road for that long. This means that we only have another 6 days of cycling until we finish at Santa Monica. On the one hand I’m happy that we are near the finish, that we are on the brink of completing 3000 miles in 32 days. However the adventure is nearly over. I can remember when I finished cycling John O Groats to Lands End and I wanted to carry on cycling. Even though we will have been cycling for 32 days I’m sure I will feel the same. I have living and breathing cycling every second of every day. After 26 days I am still loving every second of the cycling and I’m sure if this trip was 100 days I would feel the same. Cycling for me is a way of life. It makes me feel alive……

So we have managed to cycle 126 miles today in less than 7 hours cycling. Boom, well happy with that. It was all down hill but still it felt good to hit a 19mph average for the day. It did finish off with a puncture in the last 5 miles, but all is good.

 

Advertisements




Day 24 Albuquerque, NM to Thoreau, NM

21 08 2011

So it has been 1st day back on the road after our 1 day break and it has been a good day. The weather conditions at this altitude are much better for cycling. Cooler temperatures, a few clouds and hardly any wind. Although we started later today we still managed to hit 106 miles by7pm. Tonight we have arrived in a town calledThoreau,New Mexico. Arturs and Becki went ahead earlier on in the day to find some accommodation so when we arrived they were waiting by the side of the road. We looked over Thoreau and were surprised at the poverty that we saw before us. So many houses boarded up and as soon as we pulled over at where we were staying people were coming up to us begging.

So tonight we are staying in a church. There are no motels and we have been told that this is the safest place to stay. The pastor has kindly let us crash on the floor for the night. They don’t have any running water so we have had to shower in a disaster relief van which sits outside. There is a thunderstorm heading our way and we have been told that the power might go down!!!!! Also if someone knocks on the door during the night not to answer it…..should be an interesting night…….





Day 23 – Somewhere to Albuquerque, NM

20 08 2011

So day 23 has been a fun day. I have been worrying about us joining the Interstate today; which is the equivalent of the motorway in the UK. Will we be allowed the cycle on it? Will it be safe? After cycling on quiet roads will it be boring cycling? All these questions were answered within minutes of joining it. It was so much fun!!!!!! There is a large shoulder which actually makes it safer than a lot of roads that we have been on already. There was a sign as we were joining stating that cyclists were permitted to use it. Although Dayle didn’t read the sign fully; thinking that it was prohibited!!!! We cycled for a couple of minutes gaining some more altitude to suddenly come to the brow of the hill and boom. We dropped about 1000ft hitting speeds over 30mph. Based on the slow progress over the past couple of days with the head wind, thunderstorms and the hills it felt great. The freedom of flying down the hill into the mountains of New Mexico, priceless.

So we arrived in Albuquerque and have had a day off. The past 7 days I have hit close to 700 miles so it has been good to just chill out for the day. This evening we have been to a fantastic reception hosted by Whole Foods to raise money for Coffee Kids. We have also spent some time at Coffee Kids HQ meeting the amazing people who deliver the projects that change people’s lives. It reminds me of why I am doing this, to raise money & awareness for coffee growing communities in Central & South America. In entering the final leg tomorrow I feel mentally and physically fresh & revitalised. California here we come………

Please please please donate to Coffee Kids. You can visit www.cycleamerica2011.com & click donate, you put some change at any Esquires Coffee House in the UK, go to www.coffeekids.org or even pop a cheque in the post payable to ‘Coffee Kids’ to Esquires Coffee House, Millenium Place, Hales Street, Coventry, CV1 1JD.





Day 22 Fort Sumner, NM to Somewhere in the middle of knowhere

18 08 2011

So this morning we started out from Fort Sumner. I cycled round the corner from the motel and what faced me was 60 miles of nothing!!!! That’s 60 miles of no service stations, no houses & no people until the next town called Vaughn. I made sure I had lots of water & some snack bars and arranged for the support car to meet me at 30 miles with some food. So I set off into the unknown with my IPOD playing some epic tunes. I admit I was a little worried as if I had a problem I would not be able to get help. My only lifeline was the support car in 30 miles. The temperature was a moderate 90F which feels like heaven. I have to say that it was the best 60 miles cycling I have ever done. The scenery was beautiful.  I had got to the brow of a hill and found myself at the start of a road that I could see for many miles into the distance. It was perfectly straight but rolling over what look like bumps in the landscape. In every direction I could see amazing wide open spaces of untouched landscape. I turned my IPOD off and just listened to the peace and quiet of this place. WOWWW……I flew…..

So unfortunately the day didn’t finish off as it started. Dayle joined me for the 2nd half of the day having managed to fix some inner tubes. We were cycling along and suddenly out of nowhere we started to see lightning on the horizon. We nearly got caught in another thunderstorm!!!!! In this terrain we could not risk this so at 97 miles we called it quits and jumped in the car to find a motel. Frustrating end to the day but a good call…….

 





Day 20 & 21 – Memphis, TX to Fort Sumner, NM

17 08 2011

Day 20

Today was tough….the wind was constant, & unrelenting. For the whole day we struggled to hit more than 12mph!!!! After 2 hours I had to stop for a rest and popped into a café in a town called Silverton,Texas. I walked in, sat down and ordered a coffee. I stuck out like a sore thumb in all my cycling gear. A group of awesome ladies came in, all teachers from the local school, started to chatting to me. What a friendly place. Its great meeting local people and chatting to them about what we are doing. I hope that we continue to raise money & awareness for Coffee Kids. So we finished the day at only 85 miles, very frustrating day as it felt like we did well over 100!!!!

 

Day 21

After falling short yesterday I decided that I wanted to push ahead and try to make up some of the miles we lost yesterday. The day started with head wind!!!! But not as bad as yesterday so I pushed for 14mph. It was a tough first 35 miles as there were no service stations for water. After 2 hours I waved over a truck for some water. After lunch the weather changed completely, it was some awesome cycling in the afternoon. The conditions were perfect, the wind had dropped, the terrain was flat and the temperature was a cool 95F. I managed to hit 118 miles for the day, well happy……

I know I keep going on about the scenery but it just keeps getting better. Entering into New Mexicowe can see hills in the distance…a sign of what is to come.





17 08 2011




Where are all the people?

16 08 2011

So today we crossed the border into Texas and all I have to say is WOWWWW. The scenery has changed dramatically and it is epic. Cycling today has been inspirational. We have hit just over a hundred miles in some of the most picturesque parts of America. The only problem we have had today is that there are no houses, service stations or anything for many miles. We really relied on the support car for large sections today. Both Arturs & Becki did a great job in finding us and keeping us stocked up with cold water. To give you an idea, we cycled over 30 miles and I could count the number of houses we saw on one hand. It is going to get worse, the further west we go the less we will see. Tomorrow we have a stretch of over 70 miles where there is nothing, so we are going to need the hire car more than ever.