Distance: 72.3 miles
Climb: 1515 '
Weather: Chilly in morning and sunny later on
What a difference a day makes! The scenery and cue sheet were very similar to yesterday with very little vegetation on the hills and mountains and many miles on I-80. This could easily force the frame of mind of feeling like they had a job to do, and so lets get it done!
After a delicious breakfast at the Cowpoke Cafe, riders headed out of Lovelock on several back roads and avoided I-80 for the first 25 miles ending with a SAG stop. Today's headwind made them work very hard all day long. Many of them coped by using a "pace line" to pull each other - this move requires that riders work together and truly trust and understand the signals of those in front of them.
After refueling, riders headed out for a good portion of the most punishing section of their day - again back on I-80, again with a grueling headwind. After 15 miles of feeling like very little progress was made, they exited onto a frontage road for 5 miles of "chip and seal" surface which only "added insult to injury" causing several riders to have flat tires.
The second SAG was held at 46 miles and yes, you guessed it, back to I-80 and headwind for another 16 miles. At this and many other exits, riders had to carefully cross cattle guards. These metal grates are necessary to contain free range cattle, but can present a hazard to cyclists.
Riders arrived at the hotel looking like they had done a full day of exercise and though it was quite taxing, "any day in the saddle is better than a day at work"!!
Dinner was held at "The Pig" Barbeque Pit where cyclists were rewarded with an assortment of barbeque entrees. What will tomorrow bring - more of I-80?? Check in to learn of progress across this great big country.