Day 58 to Lander, Wyoming, 58 miles, 2,581 total
A brutal day with the wind in our face most of the day. At one point there was a welcome downhill but the wind was so strong, we had to peddle as if it was uphill. (I did not have kind words for the incessant gale!)
The scenery was amazing . . . what started as a wide open, expansive view became one with salmon colored buttes and other massive land forms.
Lander was a welcome sight!
Lander’s population is 7,500. Fortunately, it has a nice bike shop and I was able to buy two new tires, a new chain, and 3 tubes. Hopefully, that should get me to Florence, Oregon.
Last night we spoiled ourselves and saw The Amazing Spiderman.
Just because we’re riding across the country and our lodging is often a field, it doesn’t mean we can’t take in a little culture every once in a while!
Today’s a layover day. Lander is having a 4th of July parade and we were originally going to be in it, but we would have had to be there at 8 a.m. and wait around for the 10 a.m. parade to start. We passed on that and will have to see the parade as spectators.
We are planning on going to the rodeo tonight.
(I know this looks like Nick, but it’s not. Nick, our riding animal, is running a half marathon this morning! What a way to enjoy a rest day.)
OUR FINAL BIO
Franklin (“Rusty”) Miller is 54 years old. He’s from Big Woods, Kentucky, and is a retired middle school science and math teacher. His two significant others are Dany and Lucy (a golden retriever and a boxer). Franklin is one of our stronger riders (especially in hills like those in Kentucky), often leaving with the last few riders and catching up with everyone. Franklin’s friendships are far and wide . . . he’s had any number of people meet him along the way. He enjoys hiking and backpacking and all kinds of cycling.
Day 57 to Jeffrey City, 67 miles, 2,523 total
Wide open, see-for-100-miles spaces. Our lodging was the Baptist church (congregation 11 people) in Jeffrey City. The town is famous in Wyoming and the American West as symbol of a boomtown that went “bust” very quickly, as the uranium mine was shut down in 1982 and over 95% of the inhabitants left the town within 3 years. The population was 106 at the 2000 census, far lower than its onetime population of several thousand people.
What was once a thriving local community with shops, schools, library, sheriff, youth hostel, churches, medical clinics and more, became a ghost town. Today, the only businesses that remain are the First Baptist Church (where we spent the night), a restaurant and bar called the Split Rock Café that caters to the few local residents and those passing through on the highway (food wasn’t too bad), and Monkingbird Pottery, a pottery studio.