Summit Time Summit Time Summit Time Summit Time

Ah, Nevada, the most mountainous state!  

I read that somewhere.

Giant strings of mountains separated by wide, windy valleys that come in three colors: yellow, green, or ochre, with sweater-pill scatterings of juniper trees on the slopes of the ranges. Highway 50–fiercely proud of its “loneliest highway” status, according to the AAA–is a dream to ride, ‘cept when it’s a day mare. They produce a neeto passport you get stamped in each lonely town…and they’ll redeem yr stamped up book for a cool pin, and love letter from the current Nevada governor. Does this remind you of Tor hopping?

Yesterday we rode for half an hour in the dark, calling out stuff like “Possibility of a cattle grate”, and “maybe gravel”. A Chien Andalou moon was slashed by a swift moving cloud up ahead of us.  It was a hundred mile day, I got to ride with the eaglets for about twenty swiftpainful miles. BR flatted, and when we restarted, I realized I had a ‘body flat’. No oomph.
Then had a great ride/blab with Caroline, the silent but brainy Mary Pickford stunt double.  Then, after a lunch break, when the eaglets flew off, I hopped on my bike and reader I CAUGHT THEM. It took ten minutes, but it might be the fastest I’ve ridden this whole six week period. Heh.

Then today I was up first, and out first by an hour. No one wanted to ride in the dark. I got a second look at that gravid orange moon sinking resolutely into the jagged hills, as the sun thought about coming up… I had the road to myself for an hour, then a camper went by. Then another hour…and my comrades flew by, first solo Andy on another First To Arrive effort, followed by Phillippe (“I am zlow”) and then the trio.  I got to hang with them for precisely twenty minutes, slogging against a strong sidewind that had us side-by-side across the road…

The poplars bordering our windy KOA campsite in Ely is bordered by poplars which  HOWL in the wind!  The gusts are pretty intense, and the twenty tents are shivering and trying to take wing. My site is a tarp held down with a pillow and two cans of beans, and two very very used 1992 vintage Shimano SPD shoes. I don’t hang out there much.

I hid in the 27 foot truck for a two hour kip– blissfully quiet, warm–then emerged to type this in the wind-shelter of Mikey Wally‘s tent. On his fine computer. Mikey, you are so kind to let me hog yr silver Mac.  This blog’s for you.

Dare I try to describe the manic cackle of Mikey Wally?  He was the first person I found on the web writing about this ride.

OK, it’s what you get when a hyena mates with a jungle bird.

And his look? Brown mop of hair that dreads naturally (but DON’T TOUCH IT).  Fiendish schemy sort, don’t turn your back on him, he might just grab your hand and pet it, looking meaningfully into your eyes–if you’re a dude !

I tried to ‘steer some of this attention’ my way, and he insisted that he was only embracing Andy to knee him in the groin! I am sure this makes perfect sense to the sub-30 set.

Me, I pine for a hug. It’s 6 weeks since my skin has felt… oh wait.. there was that two hour massage in Park City…oh, well. I’ll survive.

But the day after tomorrow’s CC & my 8888versary. If nobody at least  pats me on the head,  then I will KILL THEM ALL. It is written.

Ten of us hit town by limo (provided by the Nevada Hotel)  for  a pretty good cheap meal…Mikey did a quick video called Limo Talk, watch for it nowhere…Then after our return, we went back  in the Maa-aa-aaat Mobile for food at the local market. Got lots of stuff before it was dumpstered–just asked the produce guy for what was under the cart! I met a bevvy of kids from  bike and build..they ride across the usa and build low-cost housing. We will meld groups (well, the non-competitive ones of us anyhow) tomorrow and face 45mp\h winds TOGETHER over 4 summits to Eureka!

Must mention the AMAZING “Lectrolux cafe in Baker NV, last night’s stop. Under a rising moon, I got to watch Claude Larouche’s A Man And A Woman. There are maybe 50 residents of Baker, one being Terry Marasco , proprietor of a cafe/hotel/cultural center .He’s  a Bay Area defector. His  photographs line the walls, along with great movie posters. His refrigerators have at least forty different kinds of beer. There is a big soft sofa, and packed bookshelf. There is everything you need, and once I walked in at fourish with BR and JB for grub, I never left til about eleven, when the mushy French classic was over.

The street (sorry, highway) that gives onto Great Basing National Park’s Lehman Cave was quiet and warm. Crickets sang and the elms at our campsite actually did whisper. I can’t tell you what they said, I only barely speak Tree.

~ by jacquiephelan on August 7, 2009.

7 Responses to “Summit Time Summit Time Summit Time Summit Time”

  1. While you’re riding I’m reading “The Travels of Jamie McPheeter,” a relatively obscure Pulitzer Prizer winner about travelling West in 1849 via wagon train, to look for gold. According to the book you should be seeing plenty of buffalo right about now, but watch out for rabid wolves!

  2. Prizer?

  3. Ah, that makes me nostalgic. Four years ago, I road-tripped the length of Route 50 and the loneliest road was my favorite section. The fact that you’re cycling those mountains has also made my jaw drop onto my desk.

  4. lucked out did you? just in time for the cold front to pass thru

  5. If you ever get the chance to visit Goldfield, NV, you really ought to…I think you’d way dig it. There’s a garage there that has a whole fleet of art cars around it, and there’s just this amazing vibe. We passed through there last fall on our coast-to-coast (though we were heading the opposite direction).

    Hope it’s not too blistering hot out there in the desert.

    Below is a link to my pics from Goldfield. It was a real hoot.

  6. Jacquie, Had a great time in Eureka talking about life and how it should be. Keep leading the way and teaching us all how to keep having fun. And don”t ever forget what a wonderfull thing it is to be alive, after all it’s ALL bonus Time. Love, Lloyd

  7. Jacquie, hope you’re having a happy 8888 – congratulations on that, AND on the long ride! At the rate you all have been covering the miles, you should be in CA soon – what’s your route across the border – where is the finish of this 42below trek?

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