Saw this sign at the B&B Bait Shop as I was leaving. Of course I had slept out in the open near foodstuffs. Obviously nothing and happened.
In Phoenix. 110 miles today. Need to connect with my old friend Carlos.
Chicken Noodle Cafe in Wickenburg AZ has real pie.
Breaking for lunch in Wickenburg. This is the first town I’ve hit in AZ where most of the homes don’t have wheels.
Started: Sep 23, 2010 6:44:43
Ride Time: 8:22:16
Stopped Time: 2:31:37
Distance: 111.31 miles
Average: 13.30 miles/h
Fastest Speed: 69.27 miles/h
Climb: 7555 feet
Another long day in the desert and my first century day on the tour. When I was studying today’s route last night, it looked like about 30 miles of climbing followed by 70 miles of descending.
I got off to an early start with the rising sun, and it was actually chilly, which lit a fire under me to ride faster and warm up. I also thought that I’d be able to get the climbing out of the way early, before the day heated up.
As it turns out, the first ~45 miles was climbing, and pretty grim. After I stopped in Wickenburg for lunch, my spirits improved considerably, and the grade changed in my favor, so I was able to whip along at 16 mph or better most of the way into Phoenix. By the time I was inside the urban area, i was ready to start taking it easy, and the canal bike path was just my speed—actually very nice to ride on.
I was on US 60 all the way into the metro area. Up until Wickenburg, it was a lightly-trafficked two-lane road. The shoulder was plenty wide, but often rough and debris-strewn, so I just rode in the travel lane. After Wickenburg, it turned into a 4-lane divided highway; the road was good but the shoulder was lousy. Motorists were less happy here about sharing the lane with me, and prudence required that I spend part of that leg on the shoulder. Closer to the metro area, the shoulder was excellent, and I could really crank it.
One I got into Sun City, I noticed houses on one side of the street had green lawns, while on the other they landscaped with rocks. I wondered if the lawns could be attributed to conspicuous consumption or hallucinatory midwesternism. I noticed other homes, closer in, that apparently landscape with cast-off miniature-golf course props, like windmills and wells. And I totally dig using saguaros for landscaping.
When I was planning this tour I imagined logging 100 miles a day, every day. Hahahahahahah. Oh, I crack myself up in hindsight. I heard there’s another guy who started a day ahead of me who had the same plan and at least for the first couple days was keeping to it. More power to it. Perhaps once I get past all these fucking mountains it’ll be easier to log 100-mile days. But I’ve got a hell of a lot of climbing before I get there.
Right now I’m at the home of an old friend from Austin, Carlos. It’s an important opportunity to do some laundry and fix a couple minor issues I’ve been having. Plus a valuable chance to catch up.