|Distance||62.10 kms||38.53 miles|
|Climbed||264 meters||866 feet|
|Ride time (hours)||4.01||-|
|Avg speed||15.5 kph||-|
|Distance||424.74 kms||264.08 miles|
|Climbed||2,644 meters||8,675 feet|
|Ride time (hours)||32.56||-|
Saturday, October 21st, 2017
Something was creeping around my tent last night. Something is always creeping around my tent... none the worse for wear this morning. I've got a short -- and thankfully windless -- ride into Parker this morning, about 19 miles. I forget to eat breakfast so I'm famished by the time I arrive. I know a cafe from previous visits, I head straight there and order the homemade corn-beefed hash with eggs, homefries, and toast. It is delicious.
I've got a few things to do in Parker, one leg of an upcoming flight was cancelled by the airline, I spend an hour in McDonald's sorting it out while I drink coffee and get on the internet. Next up is Walmart for food shopping and a few other sundry items I'm in need of.
I leave Parker with 2 gallons of water. When I turn west to cross the Colorado River into California the wind is right in my face. This plus the roller-coaster that is 62 towards Vidal Junction makes for a slow afternoon. There is no shoulder most of the way so I have to be on full alert for trucks.
It's already past 4pm when I roll into Vidal Junction. It's just an intersection in the middle of the desert with a gas station/convenience store, a California agricultural inspection station, and a diner that appears to be temporarily closed. I've been through here twice before, once heading west and another time heading east. It's the last place to get water (or anything else for that matter) until 29 Palms, a city 105 miles to the west. Coming from 29 Palms it's the first services you come to. Both times this convenience store has bailed me out with liquids and therefore I have kind of a reverential feeling seeing it again. Today I buy some junk food: Cheetos and trail mix. This time I'm heading north to Needles instead of west. I turn left up 95. I'm not going much further, however, given this strong wind in my face and the late hour. I walk the bike up a wash and set up camp behind some trees for relief from the wind, just like last night.
I try having noodles with a sauced based on peanut butter. It tastes good but makes a bit of a mess, I don't know if I'll do it again. After I clean up I take stock: I've got 3.5 liters of water left to get me to Needles tomorrow which is a bit less than I would like. The water just seems to disappear into thin air in this environment... it's a constant worry. A nice sunset to finish the day...