Today was a tough day. 69 miles of mostly uphill. We had a wonderful 18 mile downhill at the end, but that climb for the first 50 miles was challenging. Reshaved my head last night and pretty much went to bed after that. One rider still down, unless you count Tom, who is likely down til the end. He is now driving a second vehicle to help mediate the rest stops and rider pick ups as needed.
I was having some issues with a slight vibration today, realized it was happening only in one gear, the mechanic thinks it I might need a new chain. Not surprised, I have after all biked nearly 2500 miles on it since I got it in March.
Two more flats today. Same bike, not just flats but blown tires, no tread left. It was one of the sweep bikes, so I ended up getting a lift for about 8 miles just to speed up the line. I was worried about that vibration and having issues on this long uphill. I did get back on the bike at the 40 mile mark and finished the ride today. It was glorious minus the near misses, the hidden rumble strips at 20+mph and a near crash.
As I was nearing town, there was construction with no markings on the fresh black top. The lanes narrowed and I realized I was holding up some traffic. I decided to pull off the road at this RV park. There was a 8 inch drop from the black top into gravel. I had not actually slowed enough to exit the black top when the car behind me realized what I was planning. He mistimed his passing me and pushed me off that drop into gravel at 20+ mph. I started to skid, and I began to brake. Sadly my feet were actually in the cages and I really began to lose control. I was able to get my left foot out of my cage and drop it on the ground as I realized I was going to get some very serious road rash if I crashed. As I put my foot down I braked the bike and literally spun it around on its side without falling over. It was actually quite a glorious save and the driver seemed to be a tad sheepish as he finally passed me as if he realized he sort of caused that near tragedy.
The hosts tonight were so generous. We slept in Anytime Fitness and were able to put our bikes in a locked storage area. We were treated to this most awesome Chuck Wagon Style dinner with a live band playing all kinds of old range tunes. After dinner we got on the historic train ride. It was a treat to not have to climb hills on our own power. The conductor was very friendly.
The following morning we were again treated to a meal. So nice to not have cereal on occasion.