Historic First Hike
FAQs for Travelers
The ADT Journal
Lipton Simple Steps
ADT Ford Adventure
Links & Resources
ADT JOURNAL: CHAPTER 34
This journal was typed at the Ely Gift Boutique courtesy of Donna. It was mailed on the Internet from the Copper Queen Casino, courtesy of Mark.
August 8, Friday
August 9, Saturday
August 10, Sunday
Upon reaching Colfax, CA, we sat in the station for a while when they announced that a broken down freight train was ahead of us and we would be delayed until they could get a helper engine to come move it. The delay turned into two and a half hours so we arrived in Reno at 8:20 pm instead of the scheduled 5:45 pm. The train can be fun but when they have problems, you need to be mellow (like Bill). We did, however, see some fantastic scenery in the Sierras and we rode through Donner Pass. At the Reno station we unpacked our bikes, reloaded our bikes, and rode two blocks to Fitzgerald Casino for the night.
August 11, Monday
On the road before 10 am, we pedaled north on Alternate US 95 to US 50 and headed east. We were pleased that the heat wave that passed through the area last week had dissipated and the temperatures were only in the high eighties.
Large Lake Lahontan looked like an oasis surrounded by only sagebrush and golden mountains. There were even three large waterfowl (geese?) swimming on the lake. We were able to make good time on the paved road so we reached Fallon by 2 pm even with a stop for Bill to get a haircut.
34.6 miles, 13.3 mph, 2 hours 35 minutes 3525 total miles biked
August 12, Tuesday
We had a few long but easy hills early in the morning and we reached Middlegate Station by 11:30 am. This was a stop on the Pony Express Route and the saloon looked almost that old lots of character. Carolyn, the waitress, took good care of us and the Nevadans we were meeting were all very friendly and interested in our story. After lunch, we rode 14 more miles to Cold Springs Station, our intended destination. This place also has a lot of character and friendly people. Lisa makes a pretty tasty milkshake as Laurie had one and Bill drank two. After it cooled off, we pitched our tent and camped in one of their RV sites.
62.6 miles, 11.7 mph, 5 hours 19 minutes 3588 miles biked total
August 13, Wednesday
59.3 miles, 10.1 mph, 5 hours 51 minutes 3648 total miles biked
August 14, Thursday
It seems that the people in these small Nevada towns are used to travelling long distances. When we asked at a small general/grocery store where the people in Austin do their grocery shopping, we were told they must drive 110 miles to Fallon.
Our biking days in Nevada have fallen into a routine. On the road before dawn, we shed our longsleeve shirts about 20 minutes after sunrise. By 8 am we are ready for a mid-morning snack. At 9 am, we lather up with sunblock. At 10 am we put on our neck coolers and by 11 am we are drinking our electrolyte solution Hydra Fuel. We try to be through biking by noon. Even though the afternoon sun is intense, we are surprised that hardly any building in these high desert towns is air conditioned. Even in the afternoon, it is fairly cool in the shade and since the nights are distinctly cool, 50 degrees, there is no need for it.
There has been a major change in our riding here in Nevada. Laurie is now able to keep up with Bill. At first Laurie thought Bill was getting mellow and slowing down for her. But, he assured her he was not. So the reason appears to be Laurie's new tires. Before leaving California she got two new slick tires on her bike, since we knew we would be riding mostly on pavement and we shipped her knobbier tires home. It seems to be making a real difference. :-))
We spent the night in Eureka, an old mining town which is enjoying a new influx of money due to some recent gold strikes. The town is using some of its new wealth to restore it's historic buildings.
63.5 miles, 13.4 mph, 4 hours 42 min 3711 miles total biked
August 15, Friday
We were on the road by 5 am, well before sunrise, but with the faint glow, we could see the road. We immediately climbed 800 feet over Pinto Summit and then coasted 8 miles to the RV park which wasn't open yet. Next, Bill got another puncture in his tire (our third flat in as many days) and he replaced the tube and used duct tape on the tire. The climb over Pancake Summit was a breeze and we didn't have to walk any of it. Little Antelope Summit was a bit more difficult but then we coasted 8 miles down a rugged canyon and turned into the Moorman Ranch. Kathy Neal greeted us and offered to let us stay in their guest house. We couldn't believe our good fortune. It was a totally furnished two bedroom house with a washing machine even.
Later, Kathy and husband Jack and daughter Candy and we took a 30 mile ride in their 4 wheel drive pickup truck into the mountains to deliver ten 50 pound salt blocks to various places for their cattle. The Neals manage 300 square miles of land, mostly of it Bureau of Land Management (BLM) lands. 85% of the land in Nevada is owned by the federal government (BLM, Forest Service, Military).
This was a totally awesome ride. We rode past rugged rocky canyons, up really steep hills, and ended up on top of a 9,000 foot mountain with views in every direction. We saw a coyote, several deer, and eight wild horses.
When we returned to the ranch, they invited us to dinner. In talking with the Neals, they said their nearest neighbors lived 30 miles away. We also got a rancher's perspective of the BLM, Forest Service, and environmentalists. It seems everyone we have met in the West shares similar views. The wonderful hospitality made this an outstanding stop and we were glad we decided not to try for the full 77 miles today.
45.9 miles, 11 mph, 4 hours 9 minutes 3758 total miles biked
August 16, Saturday
39.4 miles, 11.2 mph, 3 hours 32 minutes, 3796 miles total biked
© Copyright, William & Laurel Foot, 1997, Lynchburg, VA.