Day 12

July 29, 2004

Gillette, WY to Rapid City, SD

 

Today was one of those long days … we had 160 miles with 6,500 feet of climbing.  We also had an unfavorable wind that makes a long day even longer.  One way of dealing with this challenge is to find a riding partner to talk with.  This makes the miles go by a lot easier.  My riding partner for part of the day was Reverend “E”.  One of the many things we talked about was the Big Horn commemorative tee-shirt that Lon was working on.  I had already given Lon the profile of the Big Horn climb, downloaded from my cycle computer.  And now we needed some words to go with the picture.  We kicked around a number of ideas.  One was from some psalm: “Lead me to a rock higher than I am.”  The one we decided to go with was from a Emily Dickerson poem: “We never know how high we are, until we are asked to rise.”

 

Wyoming is done – bring on South Dakota

 

the many benefits of our National Forests

 

Our lunch stop in the Black Hills

 

the Black Hills seemed a bit blacker from a recent fire

 

After 140 tough miles, I treat myself to some ice cream at Mount Rushmore

 

the view from the Mount Rushmore visitor’s center

 

on the road from Mount Rushmore to Rapid City

 

got caught by a thunderstorm, off to the left

 

Today’s message board …

 

and progress

 

Profile and statistics

Headwinds made the first 100 miles very slow.  This seemed to sap the will to continue of many riders …some took refuge in the sag wagon.  However, before taking a sag, I think you need to ask yourself three questions:

  1. Am I bleeding from my eye sockets?
  2. Am I projectile vomiting?
  3. Are any of my major organs out of place?

If you can answer “no” to any of these questions, I think you need to keep peddling!