Salida, CO. 12:11pm
OK. Let’s get one thing clear here. Mountains are the most beautiful things on earth! I knew that after I lived in Vancouver but had kind of forgotten it until now.
Before leaving Canon City last night I stopped by the town’s only bike shop – Canyon City bikes. I met Scott Eckstrom, the owner of the shop, and had a chat about what was coming up on this trip. He explained – excitedly – that what I have coming to me over the next few weeks is a monster of a trip. He kind of doubted it was doable in 3 weeks but said that I have some amazing scenery ahead of me. He said I should have basically just flown into Pueblo and spent my eight weeks west of Pueblo instead of going through all the crap on the east coast! hahaha! Next time…
I left his shop at around 6pm to start my 60 mile ride west to Salida. Not even 2 miles out of town, I met a rider going the opposite direction. We stopped and chatted for a while and it turned out that he was actually going the direction I am but had turned around to meet me.
His name is Daniel and he’s riding to California from Atlanda, Georgia, to meet his brother. He’s a very interesting guy – he’s doing this trip not for recreational purposes but for pure transportation. He’s gone cross country 5 times in the last 2 years just going back and forth between his brother in California and his mother in Atlanta. He knows exactly what he’s doing and how long things take out here, and he too said that the Western Express – the route I am on – is going to take longer than 3 weeks. The route he’s on is quicker he told me – so I’m going to do something I rarely do: diverge from my own route.
Riding in the mountains is absolutely amazing! The roads are winding, the sky is blue and we’ve just been riding along in this gorgeous canyon settled in between high peaks. The country here is really wild and untamed it feels like – super different from the boring (sorry) corn fields of Kansas.
Here are a few pictures, in chronological order form the start of my ride last night ’til this afternoon riding into a town called Salida.
Wild mountain goats:
How could you not love this?!:
Ok gotta roll! Miles here take a lot longer to put behind you than in any other state!
I’ll be in touch – and thank you!! for the awesome donations you guys have made in the last few days. They give me tons of strength up the fourteeners!