Saturday, August 4, 2012

Back in New Hampsha with the Bike Pahked in the Yahd

So we have made it back home to our girls and boys here in New Hampsha!  We are back to sharing our bed with 2 large Rhodesian Ridgeback dogs.  Just like sleeping in a narrow space in the tent, except with puppy dog smell instead of the interesting odor we had emanating from the funkified tent (i think it was Jen).   So a few things from the trail, I believe that the washboarded roads that we encountered quite often were developed by Dentists.  Yea that's right Dentists, because I am certain that my fillings and crowns have been rattled loose and require some dental attention.  I was also able to develop some talent, I was able to master the following while riding:  reading the map; unfolding and folding the map; taking the camera out of the case on my handlebar, taking the lens cap off, taking a pic, lens cap back on and put the camera away (without dropping it); eating; texting; listening to voicemail; talking on cell; drinking; adjusting Ipod; videoing.  List of talents NOT mastered:  no handed riding (almost crashed on the last day); relieving myself while riding (especially into a head wind, what a mess).  
We enjoyed the aspect of being outside everyday and being somewhere different every day and night.  Our focus was where we were going to sleep, what we were going to eat, and where we would find more water.  Our minds and bodies really went into a more primitive state, more of a survival mode.  We got to eat whatever we wanted to eat, all while losing weight.  Move over Biggest Loser, we have a new reality show, Ride, Eat, and Ride Some More...You will lose weight and gain only calluses on your buttocks.  Doesn't get any better than that!
We feel like we are on an award show with all the thank you's we have.  So grab a drink and something to eat and stick around for awhile.  Okay, we don't want to miss anyone so we would like to send out a sincere, BIG THANK YOU to all of you who offered up a donation which assisted in exceeding our fundraising goal, those of you along the divide that we encountered, everyone following our blog, as well as our house sitter Chelsea and her lovely family Amy and Dezi.  We were truly humbled by the generosity of strangers and acquaintances alike, there are some truly good people in this world, those people include YOU!  We feel extremely grateful to have had this opportunity and very much appreciate our employers for allowing us the security of returning to jobs that we both really enjoy...Thank you Louis and Lois!

All in all we had an AWESOME time, what a GREAT freakin ride!!Until next time....remember chamois butt'r is not to be ingested nor used as a facial lotion, it is of course the savior of chafing.  And only apply with your non-dominant hand in order to avoid certain embarrassment of rubbing it on and eating with the same hand.  
It is better to travel well than to arrive.


Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Day 49: WOOOOOOHOOOOO We did it!!!!

July 29, Rode the last 45 miles from Hachita to the border at Antelope Wells, NM and were given a red, white and blue Popsicle by the border patrol guards.  This was our treat for riding 2730 miles in 49 days and it never tasted so good.  We finished up at 11:40 am on a sunny hot day, riding it in about 3 hours and 20 minutes.  It was a day filled with various emotions, all in all we are just elated!  We did it!  Thank you to all of our donors, as we were able to exceed our goal which is just freakin awesome!! Soon after we finished we got a text from another couple we know from New Hampshire, that are also riding the great divide and they had just entered the US from Canada.  Go Patty and Chris, you are in for an amazing ride!  Thank you Lloyd and Carolyn for picking us up at the border, so we didn't have to hitchhike.  We really appreciate you doing such a service for riders, you two are wonderful people.  We will do a couple of final posts from home as we fly home on August it is time to relax by the pool and enjoy some down time and margaritas!!  Cheers for now, remember to check back for some final posts. 

Day 48: It's mostly downhill from here

Sunday July 29:  We wanted to get an early start to beat the heat and the storms, though I did not hear my watch alarm and we ended up leaving an hour later.  Lucky for us it still worked out well both heat and storm wise.  We rode 80 miles to Hachita, the last 20 miles were against a head/cross wind.  We could see Hachita for miles and didn't seem like we were getting any closer.  We were able to find Sam's house by memory as we had camped there 4 years ago.  Sam is a nice and generous gentleman, who is a trail angel for the Continental Divide Hikers and Bikers.  Sam gave us some cold sodas and watermelon from his neighbor as we watched smokey and the bandit with him and his dog 'bear.'  Sam told us that about 45 people live in Hachita, which is filled with abandoned houses and a post office that they were able to petition to keep open, because the next closest one is well rather far away.  Sam do take care of yourself. 

Day 47: The breakfast of divide riders...

Saturday July 28, woke up early to some drizzle, decided to wait it out before embarking on our short 30 mile ride into Silver City, NM and to a cyclist only lodging at William's house.  Getting ready to eat our oatmeal for the upteenth morning, we were generously offered some eggs and bacon by Bob Barker himself.  We fried the eggs in the bacon fat, sure to give us the energy we needed for a climb out of Lake Roberts.  Eggs fried in bacon fat never tasted so good!  After scarfing that down, we went back to packing up our stuff, typical morning routine, when we heard Joe yell 'come and get your breakfast.'  He had made us an egg, sausage, bacon and cheese burrito, yummy!  Thank you again to Bob, Joe and Sara Jean for your hospitality and food, it was much appreciated and assisted us with the climbs we had to do that day to get to Silver City.  Bob also gave us some ham to make sandwiches to take with us.  We rolled into Silver City around 11 as it was paved all the way with a couple of hills along the way.  Did laundry at William's house and stayed in his guest home.  William, we really enjoyed your company and simplicity, hope you had a good 3 day ride!  Made some final preparations for the shuttle service and to camp at Sam's house in Hachita the next night.  The anticipation of the end is building. 

Day 46: Come on down, you are the next contestant on the ...

July 27:  57 miles from Beaverhead Work Center to Mesa Campground at Lake Roberts.  Today I will say I actually felt like I was loosing weight as we rode, this was probably the hottest day thus far and a few times the wind stopped and the sweat saturated our jerseys.  This was a hard day, lots of climbing, took us 7 hours 30 minutes to go 57 miles.  We rode through some beautiful country in the Gila Wilderness with tall ponderosa trees and a lush forest, thanks to the fires they have had in the past.  So we get to the campground, wanting to go to the store we ask our camp neighbor, Bob Barker, that's right folks, Bob Barker was at the campground!  He told us the store was another 4 miles down the road and generously offered to give us a ride as well as offering up a burrito for dinner and allowed us to use his gas stove.  Thank you Bob you are a kind hearted person and very welcoming, we enjoyed the company.  We also went to another camp neighbor who had ridden his bike to silver city and then back the next day.  Albert is a retired teacher, just getting into some bike touring.  It was nice talking with you Albert.  The next morning Albert presented us with a check for a donation to the ADA, thank you soo much Albert, let us know when you make it to New Hamsphire!
After eating Bob's burrito and some of our own food we were also invited over to Joe and Sara Jean's camp for some burgers and dogs.  You two are some kind souls thank you for the great food and the company.  It was nice to be around all these nice and generous folks, what an uplift for the last 160 miles. 

We could have just taken the bus out of Pie Town....

Though I think the bus had a foul odor coming from it and seemed to have some crappy service in which it would run from behind at least once or twice a day.  

Day 45: Thursday July 26...Game of the mountain lion vs the divide riders

In this episode of divide rider vs mountain lion, the mountain lion are the storms that continue to happen in the afternoon.   We rode 71 miles into the Gila Wilderness to the Beaverhead Work Center.  At about mile 56 or 57, we again ran into storms with lightening and rain.  We rode as fast and hard as we could to reach the trees, so we weren't the tallest thing around and the rode had remnants of previous attempts of people trying to ride and drive through the mud.  The roads here become impassable with too much rain and the only thing you can do is sit in your tent and watch the road dry out.  I mean as fun as it sounds to watch dirt dry to mud, we decided to do all we could to not have this happen.  We were able to ride through the storm and roll into the Beaverhead work station unscathed.  Along the way we again met up with the Danish riders Kim and Anders, who told us how they had eaten the pie at the toaster house that was in the fridge as the note in the fridge said "made fresh Monday" and it was only Wednesday.  They proceeded to tell us that there was another note inside the house they discovered after eating the pie that was dated Monday July 9, apparently that was the Monday that the pies were made (remember it is now July 26.  Anders gave us some water, as each possible water source was nonexistent, even with all the afternoon thunderstorms.  Thank you Anders for the kindness of giving some your water to us, it was much appreciated!  Earlier in the day we were riding along when I let out a falsetto scream as a snake was in the middle of the road and we rode right by it, I think it may have been an anaconda!  (it was actually a baby bull snake, we found out later)
Up until the storms rolled in, the weather was perfect for riding, cloudy and in the 70s.  Our Danish friends brandished enough quarters to buy us a round of sodas at the Beaverhead work station, where we decided to camp with more storms looming in the distance.  The Danes with their fearless optimism rode on after waiting a couple of hours.  They left us some quarters for the soda machine, so even though we don't really drink too much soda at home, out here anything is a treat and will be consumed.  So I decided on a 'wild cherry pepsi' yup that sounds good after dinner.  Put the quarters in press the button and what falls out of the machine but a lemonade.  Did I mention we had bought lemonade powder along the way to add to the water to make it more drinkable and easier to hydrate, and the powder stuff was better, so much for the wild cherry pepsi.  At the Beaverhead Word Center, Michael was the head ranger and told us about the fires earlier in the summer that were only 10 miles to the west and how the area we were currently in was covered with smoke for 10 days with very poor air quality.  Thanks Mike for your hospitality, much appreciated. 

Day 44: Wed. July 25....Time to eat some Pie!

We saddled up early at the ranch to rope the calves, actually to get to pie town, nm, where yes they have pies!  For the inquiring minds, the pies came before the name of the town.  We got to the Daily Pie Cafe at 1055am, just at the start of the lunch menu, which is what we wanted.  After devouring a steak sandwich and fries and Jen devouring a gigantic burger and fries, we set our sights on some pie al a mode.  I went with the blueberry and Jen went with the triple berry, yuuuummmmy!  We learned that the pies are made with the healthier lard and not crisco, which is full of unhealthy hydrogenized trans fats.  The pies were delic!  While at the cafe, we met  2 riders from Denmark at the cafe, Kim and Anders, talked with them about our experiences up to this point and about the last couple hundred miles there is to go.  They were some nice chaps and were going to stay in Pie Town at the toaster house, while we were going to put in another 30 miles to the USFS campground.  We stopped at the toaster house to reminisce about our stay there 4 years ago and signed the book.  We ended up riding a total of 60 miles to the Valle Tio Vinces Campground in the Gila Wilderness, where we actuallyhad cell service.  We knew once we reached Pie Town the end was not far and thoughts of finishing entered our minds at times along with the emotions that come along with finishing such an adventure. 

Day 43 Tuesday July 24 Tray of Cupcakes

'Sexy and I know it...I ride my bike'
Grants to York Ranch, 49 miles.  The day started out needing to fix the BOB trailer bearing that was completely disintegrated.  Went to the Diamond G True Value, where Bert was more than kind and generous in assisting us with replacing the bearing.  When he found out that we were riding for the ADA, he told us about his nephew who was diagnosed at 5 years old and had recently passed away at a young age.  He took a break to go home to see if he would have a bearing at home, that he could get off an old bike.  We eventually found one at napa and went back to Bert at the True Value, where he assisted and donated his time to get the reminants of the old bearing out and install the new one.  Thank you Bert for your time and effort, a truly generous thing that I am sure your Nephew would have appreciated you doing for us.  So needless to say, we got a late start out of Grants and again rode into the stormy afternoon towards Pie Town, NM.  Along the way we saw a tray of cupcakes along the road, slammed on the brakes and evaluated the situation for consumption.  Unfortunately the lid was no longer on them or we (well I) would have most likely eaten them, no really I actually still thought about it even though they looked to have been through at least a rain storm.  So we rode on, lookin for some trail magic, when we decided to make it happen ourselves.  Rode into the York ranch in search of some shelter to camp and were offered the barn, perfect.  Mike, a ranch hand at the farm came out to the barn in the evening and generously offered up some of his homemade chicken and shrimp gumbo.  It was perfectly seasoned and delicious!! Thanks Mike!  Slept well on the hay, though Jen's sleeping pad had now developed a leak at the valve, which was not repairable, even with duct tape. 

Day 42: Monday July ...Hitchhiking 101

Leaving Cuba, NM there is an alternate which is recommended if the rains have begun, well the rains have begun and the mountain terrain ahead is reportedly washed out and more rain in the forecast.  So we set off to ride the 123 mile alternate on pavement that takes us thru a Navajo reservation with no real camping opportunities.  We gota n early start, knowing it was going to be a long day, felt pretty good, then hit a wall around 70 miles.  Along with the wall we discovered that I had completely blown a bearing on my BOB wheel, so it was just wobbling around, not good.  We stopped at a convenience store for some grub and cold drinks as the temps were rising up to the upper 80s.  I use the bathroom, my sunglasses on my straw hat, fall into the toilet, before i had a chance to flush.  I grab a handful of paper towels, knowing that I need them, held my breath and went in to fish them out and turned the sink faucet on full blast.  Again we are riding along and the afternoon thunderstorms begin to pop up with lightening, rain is fine, lightening is not.  Realizing we may not get to Grants until really late, if we made it at all with the bearing and the storms and no place to camp, we opted to hitchhike.  Now we have not done this before, which was apparent to the person that picked us up.  He slowed up, had a confused look on his face then ended up turning around unsure what or if we wanted anything.  He told us he thought at first we were just waving then he realized that our hands remained in the air and decided to be turn around to check.  We greatly appreciated ride to Grants.  So we ended up riding 87 out of the 123 miles and we were ok with the one fast forward we took.

Saturday, July 28, 2012

The End is Near!!!!....Almost Margharita time!!

Today is July 29, we are currently in Silver City, NM, 123.9 miles from the border and the terminus of the Great Divide Mountain Bike Route.  Unfortunately due to time constraints, we can't update you on the past week at this time, nor can we upload pics.  We will add all this to the blog after we finish.  Our plan is to ride 77 miles tomorrow to Hachita, camp in Sam's yard then leave Monday July 30 in the morning to ride the last 47 miles to the border, Antelope Wells, NM.  We had to book our flight in advance and gave ourselves some time, so we don't fly home until August 2 from El Paso, TX.  We are excited about the possibility of meeting up with our very good friend and my Latin American Brother from another Mother, Juan in El Paso.  He is being sent to the base there before shipping off overseas.   Once we get to the border we will have a shuttle service waiting for us to drive us to our destination.  So this is it, we are excited and overwhelmed at times with various emotions.  Next time need to bring some sort of laptop, netbook, whatever to be able to update more regularly and not be constrained by time.   So hopefully the spot tracker is working, for anyone who really gives a flies butt, you can track us til the end in the right hand column, go down to the map scroll over and click on my name 'Doug Wenger et al' and see us finish.  Can't wait to see the fanfare at the end, hope you all can make it!  ;~)

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Day 41: July 22 Nice and relatively easy ride

We rolled into Cuba, NM, 43 miles, got in early and will dry out our stuff before heading out into the desert tomorrow.  It is now time to trade in our aluminum horses for Camels.  The heat is on and the monsoon season has arrived early, so every afternoon there is some rain and a storm.  We are on schedule to finish up on July 30, maybe the 31st.  Thank you Leif for the cold water today, again, it was a boost to get us into town.  The cattle troughs were dried up and we almost had a stand off with a momma cow that did not want to get out of the way.  Thank you to Winsor, who donated $20 to us at the restaurant today, that was very kind and generous.  I will try to update pics at another time, sorry for the delay, internet is limited, and the blog takes up a lot of time.  We are over our goal, we made it before entering New Mexico, so thank you to all the donors!!  Let's see how much we can raise before we finish in another 7-8 days.  Blog you later!

Day 40: July 21 Toughest Day Yet!

This was by far our toughest day yet, rode 42 miles in 8 hours up to 10,000 feet where we got caught in a thunderstorm with hail and rain.  The temp dropped at least 20 degrees and we ended up camping up high with hail, rain and lightening.  It was a day of uphill all the way, gaining about 5,000 in elevation. Wow what a tough day!!! We were exhausted and did not like the relentless nature of the storms.  Typically one would roll in, then out, this was one after another. 

Day 39: July 20 (i think) Mexican Eatin

Rode 75 miles through El Rito, stopping a the famous Mexican Restaurant then on to the Old Abiqui B&B.  Met John, another divide rider on the trail, ate with him and we all stayed at the B&B, where Wanda was a lovely hostess.  She was willing to touch our laundry in order to wash it.  1 pair of socks and 1 pair of bike shorts holding up rather well, they can also stand up on their own.  On the way to El Rito we stopped at a snack shop along the road that has been in business for 20 years started by a brother and sister and now continues to be in operation by their parents.  What a nice treat in a remote location.  Shared the wine Ted gave us with John and Wanda's friend at the B&B.

Day 38: Not sure what day it is anymore. July ?

We rode from the ponderosa campground, up over the huge pass and down to a camping spot along the Rio San Antonio.  Sounds nice though it was a cow patty stream that was brown in color.  We rode 53 miles in 8 hours, it was a tough day with storms and rough terrain.  We ended up taking a nap in the tent out of the rain for a bit before riding on. 

Day 37: The Ham and Cheese Bagel Sandwich Bandit

This is Reiley the Bagel Sandwich Bandit.

If you see this bloodhound walking around Alamosa bloated and happy, put your sandwich in a secure place.  So we woke up in Randy's yard, packed up and decided to go to the grocery store again,  as if we had not bought enough the day before.  Jen had made us some ham and cheese bagel sandwiches for the road.  When we returned from our short shopping trip, we found our food bags strewn around Randy's yard and Reiley standing their with a big grin.  The sandwiches were gone!  Then we tried to leave and Reiley decided he wanted to go along, no doubt for more bagel sandwiches.  Finally I called Randy at work and soon after we were able to shake him off and ride away.  Hope you got him Randy.  So we did a detour as we were already 34 miles off route we were able to ride 50 miles and rejoin the route down the trail in Horca, CO.  We stayed at the Ponderosa Campground, where it was x-mas in July and they were having a party with FOOD.  We were invited over to eat by a nice guy named Ted.  This is awesome, thanksgiving and x-mas in July!  Though I think that is the last of the feasting holidays, unless we can find a place that has Easter in July.  Thank you Ted for the conversation on flyfishing, as well as the organic carrots and bottle of wine.  On our way to the campground we stopped in Antonito at the water park (town park) and joined in the fun with the 5 kids that were cooling off. 

Day 36: July 16 Good Eatin at Boogies!

So we rode from Storm King Campground, it was a cold and damp morning until we rode .25 miles up the rode into the sun, where it was hot.  We stopped along the way to call in search of a new water filter as the idea of drinking from cattle tanks and troughs without one, gives me the runs.  So we rode 32 miles into Del Norte, CO ate at Boogies Restaurant, yummy Boogies!  Unable to locate anyone to transport us or the water filter to our location we rode another 34 miles into Alamosa, the closest town with a filter. 
Bought a filter and camped at Randy's house, a nice guy who worked at Kristi's Outdoor Store.

Day 35: July 15 The day the water filter shit the bed

Left Salida and rode 74 miles over 2 passes, getting hit with hail and rain over the one.   This was only the second time we were going to get up early and we didn't like it, though we knew we had to in order to have a better chance at beating the storms.  Well as they say, the weather is a guessing game and you are usually WRONG.  The storms ended up rolling in at 11:30, rather than the usual 2pm.  We ended up at Storm King Campground, but not before filter the last bit of water we could out of our filter.  I am sad to say the PUR Hiker Filter that we have owned for a very long time has been put to rest.  Then we are about .2 of a mile from the campground and we run into mud.  This isn't your ordinary mud from New Hampsha, this is the sticky, gooey thick mud/muck of the west.  It took us some time to reach the campground, having to stop and clean out the mud several times.   I was able to ride through the rest then walk back to help Jen with her bike, which has less clearance between her tire and frame.  We were tired and the coyotes were howling.  This is not your shower and laundry campground this is a forest service, remote, pit toilet campground.   

Day 34: July 14 Salida

During the night Jen was not feeling well, so we didn't get much sleep that night and decided to take it easy in Salida for the day.  A brewfest was in town, though Jen did not think that it would be such a good idea with her no feeling up to par.  So we hung out in town, ate some good food and hydrated up.  We ended up meeting another couple at the campground, who have been biking for 3 years and will be on the road for another year.  We talked with them about biking around South America, sharing stories of various locations.  It turned out they were on their honeymoon. 

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Day 33, July 13: The return of the Chammy Butt'r Topic

We rode 50 miles from Hartsel to Salida, CO, needing to stop for more Butt'r and some groceries ended up staying in Salida for the night.  Another beautiful day in the upper 70s and sunny.  The landscape reminded me of Tele-Tubby Land, don't act like you don't know what I am talking about, I never watched them and I know what it looked like.  Green rolling hills all around us with the mountains in the distance.  Today I found out that if you apply enough "chammy" butt'r to your area and shorts, you create a gel seat without actually buying one.  I apparently overused the Butt'r today and I can tell you I was "Gellin!"  Well we are about 2 1/2 weeks out from the end if all goes as planned and friends of ours begin their jouney/adventure down the divide in about a week, good luck Patty and Chris! If anyone is around the Antelope Wells, NM region around July 30th and would be willing to give us a ride to the airport that would be great, otherwise we will hitchhike with our bikes and trailers and hope for the best....just kidding, about the hitchhiking. 

Day 32, July 12 Silverthorne to Hartsel, CO

So we rode 70 miles, fueled by the feast the night before and the big breakfast as well as some leftovers we had along the way.  Conquered the 11,600 foot Boreas Pass, which was a nice gradual grade all the way to the top, thank you railroad.  Before the pass, we stopped in Breckenridge for some much needed ice cream.  Once over the pass, we stopped in Como, CO at the only gig in town for some onion rings and green chili.  Made it to our destination the Hartsel Springs Ranch/Lodge to camp in the lawn.  Scott was our gracious host and allowed us the use of the facilities.  We met up with 2 girls Patrice and McKinley and Bill, Mckinley's dad who were riding the Trans America route and we happened ot intersect at the same place after seeing them on the bike path in the morning outside of Frisco, CO.  Thank you girls for making the pasta dinner and sharing your bagels for breakfast, great to meet you and good luck on your ride!  We grabbed most of our food to store inside, when I realized I had left one bag out in the trailer bag.  Got that and began munching on the snacks we had packed.  Jen came in frightened and stated that a mouse just ran out of the BOB bag.  I brought the bag in and kept eating, when I noticed a hole in the snack bag that was not there previously.  Looked at the grocery bag with the same size hole, thought for only a second, 'could i catch something from this mouse that was nibbling on our snacks?' Then commenced the chowing I had previously started as my hunger pangs outweighed the potential, at least in my mind.  Washed it down with rotten egg smelling water, mixing it with gatorade powder to mask the smell.  The next morning went to put our bike shoes on that we had left outside and the little mouse, not only at some of our snacks, he then proceeded to poop in our shoes.  Thanks for the return of the snacks there stuart little!

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Thanksgiving in July

Doug and I want to say a BIG thank you to Bona for allowing us to take over her house and chill out for the day.  We had pasta salad upon arrival and then she made an awesome turkey dinner with a garden fresh salad!  We ate alot and it was amazing!!  I think we may enter a food eating contest upon our return to NH.  Thank you also for allowing us to use your car so we could go to the grocery store.  And the whirlpool bath was awesome as well,  I did not want to get out.  Thank you so much for your hospitality and allowing us into your home.  This was a real energy boost for the last 1,000 miles.  Can't wait to see what we are having for breakfast!  ;~)

Day 31 July 11: The road to the feast in Silverthorne

So we got up at our usually 7am time, after a night of howling coyotes and foxes and set off at 9am to ride as fast as we could to Silverthorne, CO.  Our very good friend, Sara, has a sister-in-law, Bona, who graciously invited us into her home for a "feast," whirlpool tub and a place to sleep.  We pondered this (not at all) and decided to accept the offer.  We rode fast and hard thinking of what will come at the end of our day.  We did 38 miles and got in around 1pm to Silverthorne.  We rode over another pass, Ute pass 9, 524ft.  We still have at least two more 10,000ft + passes to go over.  Only 1,055.2 miles to go, on the home stretch!  I will say spandex by themselves are not a good look, tight spandex even worse, and loose spandex, well that isn't any better and is where we are headed.  I was informed today by my lovely wife that I have lost some weight and it shows, though I say I wear it well, spandex included! 

Day 30, July 10: up, down, up, down, way up

Rode 52 miles from Lynx Pass to William Ford Resevoir Campground.  Went through Radium, CO where all the ups and downs happened along with an unbelieveable double up hill that was not followed by a rewarding downhill.  Though the downhill earlier in the day was rewarding enough as we had heard horror stories of the riders heading north having to go up some of what we went down.  It was a hot day, difficult to hydrate with warm/semi-hot water and gatorade.  Found a purple handkerchief to go with my newly found t-shirt, this outfit is shaping up nicely!  Stopped at Radium RiverRunners and got some cold drinks, this was a nice treat as there was nothing indicated on the map.  I will say, we are waiting for the Coloradians to step it up here with some much needed trail magic, cold drinks, invites for dinner, etc.  If anyone is out there following this blog and in colorado, follow our spot and feel free to bring us a treat.  ;~)  So we saw our 3rd UPS truck on a back, dirt road that is sparsely populated, go brown!  Made some spaghetti that turned to mush as we attempted to save some fuel for our stove and put the pasta in the water before boiling.  We choked it down with some olive oil and parmesan and called it gourmet. 

Day 29, July 9: Long Road to the Top

So we got out of Steamboat around 2 and figured well we are only going about 40 miles, how bad can it be?  So we each grabbed a gigantic burrito from Azteca Tacqueria, ate it all and set out on the trail.  It felt like a loong day even though we were only out for 5 hours.  I know, only 5 hours, it was flat at first, gave time for that burrito to stay where it was supposed to, then hit the uphill for the majority of the day.  Up to Lynx Pass 8,937 ft.  Jen was having second thoughts about being glad to be in Colorado as the mountains are back!  So our trail magic came at the end of the day when the forest service campground that was supposedly closed was open and we were able to end the day alittle early and it was on route.  Met a 3 day bikepacker, Dave and hung out for a couple hours before going to bed exhausted.  Oh, we did find a t-shirt embedded in the trail, my size, not really my style though.  It said "I'm not a doctor, but I will take a peek" Breckenridge, Co.  We picked it up and ended up using a sleeve to assist in filtering water from the stream.  Hope to ripe the other sleeve off and maybe make it into a sporty, retro sleeveless, half-shirt!  Pics to come.

Monday, July 9, 2012

Currently in Steamboat Springs

July 9, we are currently in Steamboat Springs, getting our bikes worked on at Orange Peel Cycles, will head out this afternoon and put in some miles.  On the spot tracker map in the right hand column click on all riders and then my name and you can see more of where we are and where we have been.  I have not been able to upload pics in a while as it is very slow and time consuming, will attempt to do so in a couple of days.  We are now passed the halfway mark and will be in Silverthorne, CO in 2 days, though you can drive there in a couple of hours.  We are now up to 82% of our goal of $2,754, which is just awesome and amazing, thank you for more generous donations, it is much appreciate.  This has been a very special ride for us and hope everyone is enjoying the blog, miss you all, though we are not very anxious for this to be over.  We take it one day at a time and take it as it comes to us.  Chow for now folks!

Day 28: Riders in the storm

July 8, 60 miles from Ladder Ranch to Steamboat Springs.  Had to get up early for the 6:30am Ranch style breakfast with all the ranch help.  Definitely worth it though an hour and a half later, it was time to eat again.  Got caught in a storm, had to pull over under some pines and sit on our BOB Bags as to insulate us from the ground and lightening.  Almost fell asleep after eating some more snacks, then decided to carry on in the rain as the lightening all but stopped.  Rode through some beautiful country, stopped at the Columbine Store for some delicious instant coffee.  "I rarely drink instant coffee, but when I do, I prefer Nescafe!"  Then stopped at the Clark General Store/Post Office/Library/Deli/Ice Cream Parlor, new meaning to the word "General."  Ate again at Clark's then pushed on to Steamboat Springs.  It is definitely nice to be back in the mountains, though our legs are feeling the climbs a bit after some relatively rolling hills for a few days.  We are having an awesome time and are feeling really good!  To all the people who have been courteous and slowed down on the dirt roads and not flung dust and stones by the speed at which we are passed, thank you. 

Day 27: Then the storms rolled in...

July 7, rode 75 miles from Rawlins, WY to Ladder Ranch WY/CO.  I will say we were glad to be gettin out of Rawlins, while the gettin was good.  We were glad to be back riding after a lazy day, began to get into more terrain with trees.  It is nice to have a splash of green!  As we rode into Colorado, a major storm was building and looked to be moving in the direction where we were initially headed.  So we decided to change direction and take the alternate root toward some camping/lodging.  Well then the storm changed direction and began following us.  We had a difficult time finding Ladder Ranch as we overlooked it in the description of services and only had a symbol along the route to go by.  Stopped and asked some people, they were unsure, finally stopped a car and sure enough our luck returned and the lovely lady lived on the Ranch and told us where to go.  Just as we were shown our rustic cabin, the storm unleashed it's fury, while we were safe and secure inside.  I tried to add some drama here, though it really wasn't that dramatic, though again we had some good luck and good timing.  The ride was beautiful, came across a herd of sheep, one sounded like he needed a throat lozenge, they were everywhere on the road.

Day 26: July 6 Rawlins, update to previous posts

Not much to report, went grocery shopping, visited the library, ate, drank, ate some more then didn't feel like rolling out in the late afternoon and ended up staying.  It is kinda nice to go as you wish and not be on such a tight schedule.  Anyway, forgot to mention in previous posts that we have seen quite a few divide riders heading south to north, which is cool to see other people out riding.  We also encountered a badger on the road through the Great Divide Basin. 

Friday, July 6, 2012

Day 25: When needed the Divde will Produce it!

Day 25:  July 5, Camp in the Basin to Rawlins, WY, We rode 100 miles in about 9 1/2 hours of riding time and about 13 hours overall!  Hot, Dry in the 80s and limited water.  We were getting beaten down a bit, difficult to drink hot water and hot gatorade when you are so thirsty.  We wanted to take a break when we reached the reservoir, the next water source, ended up short of that to refuel on more food.  Just after we stopped, we spotted some bicyclists up ahead and a van behind them.  They were riding the divide with a support van full of cold drinks, what a relief and a boost, both mentally and physically.  Thank you guys and gals from Absolute Bikes!!  We battled a significant side wind all day, that was until we hit the pavement in the basin and got a tailwind that literally blew us 30+ miles into Rawlins.  We were not expecting to go that far and got a boost with the tailwind as we were riding at about 20 miles and hour with minimal pedaling.  What a difference a tailwind can make.  So we are still eating a lot!  We eat about every 1 1/2 hours, breakfast, after breakfast meal, lunch, after lunch meal, 2nd after lunch meal, dinner and sometimes after dinner.  Paydays, pb&j's, clif blocks, granola bars, wheat thins, and occasionally will actually stop and make more of a meal like tortellini, ramen or whatever, as well as stop at random places and eat to supplement all this....And yes, we are still losing weight!  This is awesome, eat and drink what you want and lose weight, while getting into shape!  Looking forward to Colorado, which is only about 50 miles away.  We are about 80+ miles from the halfway mark and making good time and having an awesome time and adventure!

Day 24: Dry, Hot, and more Dry

Day 24:  July 4 Sandy Creek to Somewhere in the Great Divide Basin, 77miles, rode for 8 hours, total hours was about 12.  Found a camping spot in the dark at about 10:30pm.  We rode through South City Pass, stopping at the local Mercantile for a drink and ice cream.  Then rode into Atlantic City for lunch before heading out in the Basin, which is Wyoming's desert with limited water along the way.  Filled up with water at an artisan well that flows from a pipe in the middle of nowhere, literally the middle of nowhere, no one, nothing around, it was actually quite neat to be out there.  Crossed the continental divide 3 times and enjoyed the nothingness that was something to us.

Day 23: The Day the Liquid Carbs appeared

Day 23:  July 3, Hot,  80s, Dry.  Rode 87 miles, 7hrs 30min riding, overall 11 hour day.  Rode into primitive camp near Sandy Creek arriving around 9-9:30pm.  Stopped in Pinedale, WY at the Wrangler Cafe for lunch and had some darn good blackberry pie.  So there we were sitting along the rode in the dry desert of Wyoming, taking a break when a couple in a jeep pull over to see if we need anything.  They gave us cold beer, water and chocolate!  Got to the remote camping area, where a horse outfitter had already set up camp with their clientele, again we were given a couple cold blueberry beer and camped across the road from them along the creek.  Got to wash up in the creek which was nice and used a cow patty for a pillow, things are looking up!

Day 22: Going uphill on the downhill

Day 22 July 2:  Union Pass, WY to Whiskey Grove Campground (otherwise known as "Fly Grove")  40 miles, sunny and in the 80s.  Flies, flies and more flies, I won't get into details, other than to say they were brave and bold and would land everywhere!   The map showed all downhill once we crested union pass, it was the most uphill we did on a downhill.  We could see more smoke from forest fires in the distance and at the end of the day got blasted with wind, rain and dust for about 15 minutes, that came out of nowhere and abruptly ended as fast as it started. 

Day 21 The Smell of Bar-B-Q

Day 21, July 1:  Togwotee Pass to Union Pass, 38 miles, mostly uphill.  So we crest the 9,658 ft Togwotee Pass, come down the other side to the smell of Bar-B-Q.  Taste buds watering, thinking this will be an unexpected treat, roll into the "famous lava mountain lodge." (not sure how famous it is!)  Just to find out that it will only be ready at 3 and it was noon, so much for that.  Rather uneventful day with lots of climbing.  Camped at a forest service campground along the spring creek that locals told us about, that was littered with cow pies.  We could see smoke to the east as a result of some wildfires that were burning 300 miles away. 

Saturday, June 30, 2012

Day 20 Flagg Ranch to Togwotee Pass

So we rode about 50 miles today, thinking that it may be a relatively easy day after yesterdays 83 miles, well it was for the most part before that last 10-13 miles of constant elevation gain that we experienced.  After leaving Flagg Ranch we stopped along the way to take pics of the Tetons.  Lucky for us there were not many RVs on the road so it was smooth sailing through RV alley between Yellowstone and the Tetons.  We stopped in Colter Bay for some lunch and groceries then headed to the Buffalo Road Cafe for some pie ala mode, yummy.  We arrived at the Togwotee Resort, where a guy, Pete, we had met earlier in the trip who is also riding the divide, offered for us to stay in his hotel room to be able to get showers and clean up a bit.  We did some laundry in the shower and hope to get to bed soon.  Well we are up to about 1,038 miles, so we have about 1,716 miles to go.  We think we are going to slow this down a bit, in terms of miles/day, then again we are tired right now and even 20 miles seems too far to go tomorrow.  We continue to gauge it as we go, with no real set plan for each day, at least not for the most part.  Thanks for the continued donations, hope you are all enjoying the blog!

Chamois Butt'r

So there is thing in biking long distances in which you begin to get some chafing, well I started to get it.  So I had our friends do a reckon mission in search of the elusive "Chamois Butt'r"  Unfortunately for them I did not text the way it is pronounced "Chammy" and they asked for it by the way it is spelled.  This stuff is great, it smells delicious and looks like soft butter, though I will not be putting it on my toast in the morning, though as exhausted as we feel, it could happen if we have toast at night.  Note to self, no toast at night, in fact we haven't had toast anyway unless we have eaten out for breakfast.  The delirium is setting in again after a long day. 

Day 19, Back in the Saddle on the Aluminum Horse

Gitty up and away we go from Big Springs, ID to Flagg Ranch, WY.  From the look of the maps it looked like a doable 83.5 miles, well it was doable, just took longer than we anticipated.  We rode for 9 1/2 hours out of the 12 hours we were on the road.  It was a loong hot day about 80 degrees.  Got a great view of the Western side of the Tetons, after riding on soft cinder, washboarded rail trail.  So we are riding along and suddenly here comes a Jeep, backing up the rail trail with an Florida State University bumper sticker.  So to all you FSU fans (Amy S.), the only thing I reckon caused this person to drive onto a rail trail and reach a point that they were no longer able to drive was that they must be so educated that they could only read word signs and not signs with pictures on it, such as the rail trail sign.  I will have to look more into this, in my spare time.  So along the way, were told that there had been some bear sightings, well I had gotten rid of the obnoxiously loud, annoying sounding horn that was given to me at work and replaced it with yelling "hey Bear."  Well, we thought we would change it up a bit and started yelling "Peanuts, Popcorn, Crackerjacks" and "Ice Cold Beer" as well as "Free Beer."  Then realized that we may get some business by the locals, as this is the middle of nowhere and if I heard people yelling this I just might grab my money pouch and head out to see what I could get. 

Yellowstone with Friends...

So we took another day off to meet up with some friends and explore Yellowstone.  We may be the only 2 couples on earth to have explored Yellowstone all in one day, it was the Griswalds do Yellowstone tour that was fast paced and tiring.  Jen with her keen bear spotting eye sight, was able to spot a bear, laying down, behind a tree, while driving in a car at 35mph.  Well this then caused a Yellowstone traffic jam as everyone began stopping to see what we were looking at, blocking the road and the pull off.  We can definitely say that Yellowstone was truly beautiful and amazing and it was great to hang out with friends, though we prefer the road less traveled. 

Update to previous post...

So we have some more time now to add some details to the previous post.  The last couple of days in Montana were wind filled to say the least and not a tailwind either.  We battled some pretty strong head and side wind that pushed us across the rough, dusty and washboarded roads.  At one point we were stopped in our tracks and got sand blasted, just putting our heads down and pushing our bikes through it.  The long day into Lima, we rode approximately 83 miles, stopping along the way to filter water out of a stream in a cow pasture with cow patties on the streambed, yummy!  So far, so good with the water, the filter appears to be working well as we haven't gotten sick.  Now you may be asking, why drink from the stream with cow poop in it, well, there were no other options at the time.  It has been quite hot lately and we are drinking more and more water, applying sunscreen like we live on Mercury.  That day also consisted of riding through 2 cattle drives, which 5 cowboys and a number of border collies were moving cattle 3 days away, it was rather neat and thought about riding along with the cows, but they were headed in the direction we had just came from.  The day into Bannack State park we rode about 50 miles, the day before we did about 58 from Butte and into Butte we did about 60 something.  So we have had our fare share of long days and it seemed to get hot fast, though there is some relief in the shade due to the dryness, that is of course if you can find shade in the arid, sage brush landscape. 

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Hasta Lavista Montana, Hola Idaho

So we took day 11 off in Butte to do erands and such.  Day 12 we rode into Wise River, home of the aggressive and ferocious mosquitos that were attacking us while riding at 14mph.  Met up with some rafters that lent us their bug spray and invited us to hang out at their campsite.  We feasted on their leftovers and had a great time talking and hanging out with some new found friends, whose names shall remain anonymous as requested.  Day 13 we rode against the wind and into an oasis in the middle of the arid, sage brush landscape of Montana, Bannack State Park.  Thank you to the campground hosts there, Jamie and Paul for thier hospitality and generousity.  Day 14 we got an early start to try to avoid some of the wind, rode til about noon or so and took a break and a nap in a dried up creek bed under a tree.  Broke a spoke, fixed the spoke.  We then rode on and decided to ride into the night, arriving in Lima, MT at 11pm, camped in the wind with the tent bending and flapping.  Along the way we met an elderly gentleman, from Gilford, NH, who was waiting for his wife as she was hiking the CDT.  When finished she will have completed all 3 of the long distance hiking routes, the AT, PCT and finally the CDT, way to go!  So we rode 80 miles and did some awesome night riding.  Day 15 found us fighting some 40mph cross wind and head wind that gusted to up to 70mph at times causing us to stand still.  We ended up staying a the Centenial Outfitters lodge as we just could not ride any further in the wind as it was already 7:30pm and we were still not at our destination.  Highly recommend this lodge, Mel and Chris were just fantastic hosts, good food and a warm hospitality, making us feel part of the family.  Mel had some great stories from when he was a kid in a one-room school house with only a hand full of students.  Chris also shared that she had lost her father due to complications related to Type 1 diabetes.  McKayla and Levi were working with the family and were some very nice young adults, looking forward to going to school next winter.  Left the lodge on day 16 and ran into Greg and Tracy and rode with them for a bit.  Reached Big Springs Idaho and met up with our friends and stayed with them in Yellowstone.  Day 17, we are currently in Yellowstone with our friends will check it out today and get back on the bike tomorrow.  Should be in Wyoming in less than 2 days.  Thanks for the comments and continued donations, much appreciated, we are now up to 71% of our fundraising goal.  So the question is, why on earth do mule deer hop away when it is clearly faster to run?!  Time limited again with the computer, hope to have more time in the future to add more interesting and funny occurrances.  Hello to everyone at both our workplaces, you are all awesome for supporting us on this journey/adventure.  Thanks for reading.  :~)

Friday, June 22, 2012

Where in Montana is Jen and Doug? part 2

Just wanted to keep the part 1 and 2 going.  (Rob Leipheimer in front of Levi's jerseys at the Outdoorsman) So we will leave tomorrow for somewhere else, probably around Wise River area.  We may have picked up a tag along for at least a while or so, a racer was at the bike shop and she has been been battling illness and some frightening times alone as a woman on the trail.  We have offered for her to tag along with us and she was sounding like she was going to take us up on our offer, though she was going to get checked out at Urgent Care.  Wishes to Niels and Willemijn  and Greg and Pete, riding out there somewhere in the Montana wilderness, hope we run into you again, it was a pleasure.  Hello to Juan, wherever in the world the Navy has you at this point, wish you were here!  I have updated the pics in the right hand column, click on and enjoy.  We are now up to 66% of our fundraising goal, remember the link is in the right hand column and all donations are tax deductible and go directly to the ADA.  Thanks for reading and traveling along and for the donations.  If you want to post a comment it looks like you have to gain a google account, which is free and easy to sign up for then you can comment on our blog, please do, it is great motivation and inspiration.  Until next time, you can hear my butt mumbling through my bike shorts, "get me off this seat!"

Where in Montana are Jen and Doug?

Hey again folks, so let's see where I left off, oh yea, day 9 the ride out of Lincoln.  It was a beautiful sunny day, rode over 3, yes 3 passes that crossed over the continental divide.  So if you are keeping track at home we have crossed the divide 3 times in the US and 4 overall.  It was a long day camped at Moose Creek outside of Helena.  Met the county commissioner for the Lewis and Clark County that was in office when they captured the unibomber in Lincoln....interestingly small state for how freakin huge it is!  Day 10, Sunny all day and one of the toughest days so far, though I will probably say that after everyday.  Rode into Butte, MT got in around 7pm after leaving around 9am.  That is a looong day in the saddle.  We decided to take today off after getting in late, need to recoup, re-supply and get our bikes worked on, last bike shop til Colorado.  Stopped in at the Outdoorsman, owned by Rob Leipheimer brother of pro cyclist Levi.  Rob was more than generous, had a lounge set up for people on the divide, whether touring or racing, worked on our bikes immediately for free and offered some great advice.  Thank you Rob and Larry for the work and generosity, it is much appreciated.  Highly recommend stopping here for anyone doing the divide, actually it is a must!!

Part 2, see part 1 below...

Day 7, well  more rain, this is a theme for a while, i tell ya.  We ended up avoiding another pass that had reports of snow, still road through the cold rain all day into Seeley Lake, MT.  Met up with 4 other riders that took the pass and told us how bad it was and how we were lucky to have avoided it.  They were up there for hours trudging through the snow with hail and rain pounding them all along the way.  Phew, yet another one missed!  So we hung out with our new found friends and all left the next day and road together for a while at least.  Before we left Seeley Lake, MT we stopped at an Ace Hardware/Convenience Store/Eatery, where we received donations from Pat the Manager and 2 lovely ladies working at the eatery Jody and Radean.  Thank you very much, it was truly humbling and emotional for strangers to offer the donations!  Later in the day one of the 4 riders we met up with, Greg, also gave a donation before we rode on.  Thank you Greg!  So Day 8 brought slightly less rain, rode over huckleberry pass to Lincoln, MT home of the infamous unibomber.  Stayed at a motel as again we were wet and cold and the temps were dropping, Kevin at 3 Bears Motel was very nice and friendly and accommodating.  Thanks Kevin and keep panning! 

Good Karma and Random Acts of Kindness, part 1

So it has been sometime since the last update.  Day 6, we left polebridge went a different route to avoid the snow in the pass.  Definitely a good decision, stopped at a winery along the way to columbia falls, MT and had a wine tasting.  The guy running the winery used to live in PA near where we grew up and was in NH the week before, unbelievable.  We camped in Tom and Patty Arnone's yard, they are very kind and generous hosts along the route and love to have cyclists.  Thanks again for your hospitality!  Day 7 we had a tough 6 mile climb then the rain hit us, it was a deluge, so we were cold and wet all over.  Arrived at an intersection on the trail, a jeep rolls up with 3 people, Brian, Apryll and Joost, who graciously offer for us to stay at their guest cabin at their place a few miles away.  We did and it was truly amazing, an awesome hot meal that Apryll made and a cabin with a wood stove to dry our stuff and warm us up.  If anyone is interested in buying a Didgeridoo, check out Brian's website at 

Friday, June 15, 2012

Yeee Haaaww....We are in Polebridge, MT

So when saying the title of the post, you have to use your best western accent.  As I said previously, the biggest challenge seemed to be being able to keep our caloric intake up...problem solved.  (This one is especially for Martha)....Here is my thought (since I have a lot of time to think while the seat is becoming one with my buttocks)  I thought for breakfast I would fry up some grizzle from a nice big fatty steak, fatty bacon on a lard lathered bagel and deep fried.   All I can say is yummy and where is the closest outhouse!  Polebridge, Mt is this interesting place in the middle of nowhere, that everyone around seems to know about, it has a saloon, mercantile and a hostel (where we are at right now) run by a fantastic guy named Oliver.  Recap of day 4, long day against headwind, crossed border into US, I can´t remember much else besides the pain in my backside.  Day 5, reports of snow over whitefish divide, only turned out to be snow patches, though it was a day of climbing 26 miles and not an equal amount downhill.  Rode into Polebridge, which is 5.5 miles out of the way...and definitely worth it, got info on snow for tomorrows ride from a guy named Yan, who advised to reroute if possible.  ItÅ› possible and we may just do that, he found it to be quite miserable and he isnt pulling a trailer.  To all our friends and family, thank you for your support, keep the comments and donations rolling in, it really means alot.  Days are long, tough and tiring and they help to drive us forward.  So remember boys and girls, when using your chamois butter, use the opposite hand that you would to dive into a bag of chips or popcorn, especially when sharing with others.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Welcome to Fernie

So I would upload a pic to this post, but the computer is an antique and the software is from a decade ago and will not allow me to upload a pic.  I think it may have asked me "what the heck is a pic?"  Anyway it is the morning of day 4, we are in Fernie, about 160 miles into the trip.  We decided to take the Fernie alternate route due to the weather yesterday, cold and rainy on and off all day.  The other way took us to a higher elevation where there is snow and looked like it may have snowed more yesterday.  So recap of the past 3 days.  Day 1: stayed at Boulton Creek about 60 miles from the start, good weather, saw a couple of wolves and a cow moose and her calf.  Day 2: stayed in Elkford, it was a 50 mile day, saw elk, big horn sheep and some deer.  We had to go over a 6,400 foot Elk pass that still had snow patches and plenty of thick mud, took us 3 hours to go about 5 miles....good times, lots of hike-a-bikes.  Day 3:  went another 50 miles into Fernie, cold and rainy throughout the day, ended up staying here at Barbara Lynn's B&B, they accomodate cyclists for $40.  So anyone reading this that is going to do this trip, definitely recommend staying here, we were able to dry out our stuff and get some much needed r&r.  The biggest thing thus far is trying to sustain our food intake, pretty much we are eating everything in sight and still want more.  I think we scared the bighorn sheep, because we were hungry and he saw the look in our eyes.  In Fernie, I ate sushi out of the back of a van, yea that's right Yama to Go Sushi, it was gooood!  I could not upload the pic from Jen's camera.  Check out the picasa album in the right hand column, I was able to upload pics from my camera.  Well we are going to shoot for the border today about 55 miles, so we may be in Eureka, MT, which is about 65 miles, we will see what the day brings first.  Chow for now!!  :~)

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Self-proclaimed "Crazy Larry"

Met "Crazy Larry" in Banff, he is an avid cyclist and lives for the Great Divide race that happens every June.  We also got a hilarous video as well....Go Larry!!

Meeting up with strangers

Meet Olan, Shuttle driver for the Banff Airporter, very nice chap, excited about our trip.  So the adventure has certainly begun early. In your great divide manuals, please turn to the "shit will hit the fan" page to review what may go wrong.  We delayed our flight to Friday, while in line to board an American Airlines 1:30 flight, plane was taken out of service.  Scrambled to find another flight, they booked us on US Airways for 4:30.  Arrived in Calgary after midnight, so we missed our shuttle, bikes didn't show up and neither did the baggage claim reps.  We had to stay in a hotel in Calgary, get to the shuttle pick up at 8am, for the guy to tell us everything was all booked for the day.  Turned out he was looking at the wrong screen and there was plenty of room.  Got to Banff, after hours and numerous phone calls over 2 days we were able to get our bikes today.  We plan to roll out Monday June 11 at 6am. 

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Updated Departure Date

So the adventure has begun, no we have not begun riding yet, we are actually still in New Hampshire.  So we lost our 17 year old cat the evening before we were to fly out, decided to switch our award tix,  luckily a flight was available on Friday June 8.  Spent the day looking for Mr. Felix, who escaped from the backyard somehow, get your ass back home buddy!  So this will push our start to ride date off to Sunday June 10.  Thanks to Scott at we are back online with a map in the right hand column of our blog where you can track our progress and our whereabouts.  Ok folks, will try to post again from Banff before we start the ride.  Oh yea and we are up to 60% of our donation goal, freakin Awesome!  A BIG Thank you to all the very generous donators. 

Monday, June 4, 2012

Make sure your seat backs and tray tables are in the full upright and locked postion

We are down to 3 days til we fly out and 5 days til we ride.  So we want to thank all of our friends and family for their support, it really means a lot to us.  Thank you to our awesome dog/house sitter Chelsea, it is a relief to know our girls will be well taken care of, you rock!  Thank you to all those who have generously donated to this very special cause, it really means a great deal to us, keep them flowing, we are at 39% of our goal and still going strong.  Thank you to all of our colleagues at the Concord Visiting Nurses Association and Riverbend Community Mental Health, we are truly humbled by the support and appreciate this opportunity that has been allotted to us.  Thank you to Spot Tracker for providing us with a Spot tracking device and subscription.  (hopefully we can get the map working again on our blog)  We are packed, psyched and ready to be one with nature for 2 months. 

“You cannot travel the path until you have become the path itself”  (Hindu Prince Gautama Siddharta, the founder of Buddhism, 563-483 B.C.)

Monday, May 28, 2012

12 days till the ride

We are getting psyched and packed, with 12 days til we start the ride and only 10 days til we fly to Banff.  We are excited about the donations, we are up to 35% of our goal.  So to answer some questions that have popped up from people.  The ride will consist of Jen and I, there is no group of people or support vehicle.  Showers....what showers, we will wash up in water sources and yes take the occasional shower at a campground with shower facilities.  Our goal is to camp and not use any hotels/motels that we come across, though we will stay at the occasional 'bicyclist only' lodging, which is basically a trail angel.  The best way to describe this adventure is think about people who have hiked the appalachian trail, except we are on bikes.  We will be pulling BOB trailers with our bikes, packing as minimally as possible.  We will have a water filter to treat the water we find along the way.  The route is mostly off road on dirt back roads, fire roads, forest service roads and some single track trail, about 10% of it is on pavement.  We plan on stopping in libraries along the way to update our blog, we do not have smart phones.  We will pack up our bikes in bike boxes and take them on the plane with us, there is a $150 fee for bikes.  There is an unofficial race that starts at noon on June 8, no entry fee, no winnings and no support.  We will plan to be at the start to take some vid and pics.  We will post at least one more time before we head to Banff.  Hasta luego. 

Sunday, May 20, 2012

3 weeks til departure

Today we did the 64 mile North Shore Tour de Cure ride for the American Diabetes Association; they announced our ride and we were able to hand out some of our cards with our Blog information on it.  The donations are flowing in we are up to $750, which is 27% of our goal!  It is truly awesome how giving people have been, we are very thankful to you all.  The plan is to depart on June 9 from Banff, we feel as though we are on schedule with preparations and training.  What seemed to be surreal has slowly shifted to becoming reality, we are so grateful for this opportunity.  Keep the donations flowing, no amount is too small, it all adds up.  Chow for now.  :~`)

Saturday, May 5, 2012

5 Weeks to go...

So obviously we are getting really psyched for this as we are posting with still several weeks to go.  Update on the snow, they have had some warm temps and rain, so the snow is melting, hopefully will be gone or at least almost gone in 5 weeks.  Reports are indicating a faster than average snow melt this year.  We also want to thank those who have donated to the American Diabetes Association using our link, we have received some very generous donations.  Currently we are at 10% of our goal.  Donations can be made from now until some time after we complete the ride in August.  We have begun practicing with the video camera and Jen believes that she is just hilarious, laughing at herself, we will see how funny she is after a looong hot day in the saddle!

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Meeting up with Friends and Snow

We are very excited that our friends Jason and Laura are planning on meeting up with us around southern Montana the end of June, which is just Awesome!  We are expecting to take a day off with them to visit Yellowstone, they are planning on camping with us, though they will not be riding.  Another friend will possibly meet up with us in Salida, CO when we arrive there sometime in the middle of July.  As for the snow part, right now there is still a significant amount of snow in Canada as they have had an average to slightly above average snow year.  We are hoping that with rain and warmer temps most, if not all the snow will be gone by the time we start.  We will continue to monitor the snow as it may have an impact on our ride in one way or another.  
If you want to send a message or a comment, click on the word 'comments' below and type away!  

Friday, April 27, 2012

Donation Link

So here we are with about 6 weeks to go.  There have been some questions about the donations and donation link.  The donation is in the right hand column, if you double click on the link it will take you to our team page on the American Diabetes Association website.  Then click on 'Support Doug and Jen' this will take you to where you donate monetary funds.  The minimum you can donate is $5 on the site and you can use credit card or paypal to do so.  Any amount is appreciated.  Thank you.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

7 weeks to go.....

Ok folks, 7 weeks from today we begin our divide ride.  Some of you may or may not know that Jen and I have a history with the Great Divide.  It was 5 years ago that Jen and I were invited to join a friend of mine, Keith Cunningham and his friend Nat to tour the divide route.  On the second day Jen crashed her bike, breaking her collarbone and sustaining a concussion.  We took at Greyhound bus over a thousand miles to end up 300ish miles from where we were to spend some time in the Yak, MT. (the greyhound bus trip is another story for another time)  In 10 short days, Jen was ready to ride again and we rode another 900+ miles before circumstances made for our need to exit.  This has never left our minds or hearts, the divide gets into you and you can't get it out, you just have to find someway to appease it and live with it.  Now we are going back for some unfinished business with a strong drive, determination and the will to experience this great ride.