by John Fender
Sometimes when you sign up to ride for a few weeks across the country you know what you are getting yourself into. And, other times, you don’t. Today was one of those days filled with many surprises that I never counted on happening on this journey. We are in Wyoming, filled with big skies, miles of prairie, and just the right amount of hills to allow your legs to tingle. This ride marked the longest of the voyage: 108 miles. Miles like that separate the training wheels from the clip ins. Being on one road for 102 of that century plus 8 miles started out intimidating, however, it turned into a day filled with pace lines, rides in the back of a truck, and breath taking views of mountains.
However, there was one other surprise that created an eventful day. Right before our 45 mile rest stop, about five miles away, the road gave way to dirt and mud and the temporary traffic light set up meant business. We could no longer go anywhere. There was no road, no shoulder, and no way to get across. That is, until a local offered up the back of his truck. So the six of us there loaded up our bikes, hopped in the back, and began a bumpy ride across this muddy abyss. It wasn’t planned and I could never have expected it to happen, but that is what makes an adventure an adventure–the unknown last minute changes. Riding as a team, experiencing nature in its finest, and taking a ride in the back of a stranger’s truck, all turned this potentially mundane ride into another pleasantly unexpected adventure.