Cycling Date: Sunday 28-June-15
Mileage: 65 miles
Weather: Upper 60s to start. Up 90s to end. Not a cloud in the sky. No real winds to praise or complain about.
Highlights of the day:
Our day started with an ABC Quick Check. A what? ABC Quick check is a safety check for our bicycles. A is for air. We check everything to do with the wheels & tires. B is for brakes. We check everything associated with the brakes. C is for chain. We check the drive train and all things related to the chain. Quick is for quick release. We check all the quick releases on the bike – brakes, seat posts, wheels, etc. Mike guided the riders as each checked over his or her own bike and then brought any issues to his attention. It’s always important to know that your bike is in proper working order. On these long tours with the added stresses our bikes are enduring, it’s even more important.
We gave up the frontage road in favor of farm roads. The route zigzagged through field after field of crops. Mostly wheat and potatoes. It’s Idaho, we had to see potatoes. The fields of spuds had different color flowers. We came to the non-scientific conclusion that the red flowers are for red potatoes, the purple flowers are for purple potatoes, and the white flours are for white potatoes. Who could argue with that?
And then there were the dogs. Lots of dogs. Dogs that hide along the side of the road and run after anything on wheels. We tried to strategically place the support vans and staff to help distract or dissuade a few from the chase. Standing at the end of their driveway seemed to keep a set of three from running. We joked that they will probably gather tonight and commiserate about how we ruined the day they were planning to chase after 34 cyclists.
One SAG stop divided today’s ride. The second half continued through farmland with occasional views of the Snake River - wide and calm, reflecting the sun. Coming into Idaho Falls we crossed the Snake River right at the town’s namesake, Idaho Falls. It’s not the huge spectacle of Niagara Falls but a quieter beauty that can be enjoyed on the bike paths that border both banks of the river.
Today was a well-timed “active recovery” day. Lower mileage and into the hotel early. Tonight we need to sleep well for tomorrow we will climb!