Day 6: Desert Highway

At breakfast this morning we were talking about today’s ride — 92 miles, most directly on interstate 80 — and the dread we felt riding alongside 18 wheelers and RV’s.   Actually, a lot of these darn trucks now have 3 containers — they’re more road train than truck.   And more than 18 wheels.

I asked a simple question — how does tomorrow look?   Not one person could answer.   It’s interesting when you have an intense challenge like this, sometimes you just say “let me just get through today; then I will worry about tomorrow.”   We all know there are two 100+ mile days later this week, but no one knew which day.

Rhetorically I asked the question in my first post “are there really people in that part of Nevada?”   The answer is basically — not many.   Beautiful Lovelock seems to have two industries — a casino and a Federal Prison (made famous for OJ Simpson’s incarceration).   It was really one of only two towns on the 92 mile stretch today.   I think tomorrow is the only town along the ride.   There aren’t really even gas stations between these towns.   It’s desert, desolate and hot.

Had an interesting lunch.   Huge signs for Pizza drew Carl and I in, but as we got closer, we had some trepidation — it was a combination gas station, pizza parlor and convenience store owned by an Indian couple (from the sub-continent, not Native Americans).   As we ordered two women, who were clearly regulars, picked up their pint of whiskey for the day.   They looked pretty terrible — tattoos, bit of an inability to put together a coherent sentence, but friendly (and curious).   Turns out the dough was made right there by the husband, and it was a fantastic pizza.

Today’s ride.   148 kilometers from Spark Nevada to Lovelock.    I would never have thought 92 miles would ever feel like a rest day, but after two days of climbing this was really more straightforward.   Another flat today.   Learning that when these steel radials from those big trucks blow up all over the highway, all these tiny little wires get scattered all over the road like pollen in spring.   Fortunately Dr. Carl (he really is a doctor) had a pair of tweezers to yank that little bugger out of my Vittoria Rubino Pros and get me on my way.

Today’s Song:   Neil Young “Unknown Legend.”  

Somewhere on a desert highway

She rides a Harley-Davidson

Her long blonde hair

Flyin’ in the wind

She’s been runnin’ half her life

The chrome and steel she rides

Collidin’ with

The very air she breathes

The air she breathes.

From <http://www.lyricsfreak.com/n/neil+young/unknown+legend_20099115.html>

7 thoughts on “Day 6: Desert Highway

  1. sounds like the road from Alice Springs to Ayers Rock…once you pass the gas station in the middle, it is desolate…broken down vehicles, bones of dead animals, and four hours of hoping you don’t get a flat…

    Nels Friets nelsfriets@gmail.com +65 9731 3258

    >

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    1. I put in an order today. My sister’s friend recommended Schwalbe, I just didn’t know which actual tire to get. Another guy on the trip was also raving about Schwalbe. But the Gatorskins were available for 2 day shipping, and I think 28’s will feel better. We had about 30 miles of riding today with these nasty corrugated parts of the concrete to wake up motorists that drift off the road. Not very biker friendly.

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