So long Silver City… you treated us well. After a 2.5 day logistical rest we said our goodbyes to Silver City. We’ve only taken two days off from riding since July 4th so we hardly knew what to do with the extra time.😂
However… we managed. We ate at our fave restaurant four times, did laundry, toured the local bike shop, walked the city, went to a lovely Mass at St Vincent de Paul, took a lot of naps and watched three movies which we never do at home. If you haven’t seen Rush, the true story about Formula 1 racers Niki Lauda and James Hunt, I highly recommend it. True story… with some good themes.
Two of our seven kids, John and Anne are pushing hard to get close to pick us up tomorrow instead of Friday at the border. 👏🏻👏🏻👏🏻 It’s hard to coordinate the 23 hour drive with their work schedules and our cycling but that’s what we came up with.
You can do the ride to the border in a day from Silver City. It’s only 123 miles but it can be tough if the weather is sketchy (wind, rain, hail). Or the ride can be broken down into two days, even three if you really want to stretch it. John and Anne are safely “Formula One-ing” it to pick us up tomorrow. And we can’t wait to see them!!!
The ride today was spectacular, especially through the Chihuahuan desert. There were blue bird skies, pronghorn herds dashing by us and stout succulents stood like sentries along the dirt roads as we passed. We were just soaking it all in as this would be our last off-pavement stint. No more washboard, deep sand, babyhead rocks, badger holes, or peanut butter mud to contend with – kinda not mad about all that.
A little over three years ago we finished our bike tour across the country on Adventure Cycling’s Northern Tier (NT) Route. Although the route was a lot different and longer than the Great Divide we often find ourselves comparing the two. They are kinda the same… kinda different.
NT was all paved, almost 4,200 miles long and we traveled east bound, coast to coast. The GDMBR is mostly off road, about 2,500 miles long we are traveling southbound, border to border. It typically starts in Banff but you know… COVID 🙄 #hateit
Every day on NT we each did 100 pushups and a four minute plank. That idea came out of the blue on the first day in Anacortes, WA and we this practice up everyday. Not so on the GDMBR. It’s kind of a total body workout in itself. 🤣 Especially the hike-a-bike sections. So in at least those aspects the two rides are different.
One habit we’ve kept up each day on both rides is beginning our ride with prayer. Every. Single. Day. We take turns but we always ask God for mental and physical strength to complete the day, to keep drivers alert, keep our bikes mechanically sound and to give us the desire, wisdom, courage and perseverance to overcome obstacles we encounter. We also ask for blessings on and protection for our family and friends. Many times there is a person we have met, a local, a fellow cyclist, or a situation (i.e., rain for farmers) we think might benefit from a prayer. It’s the most important habit we’ve formed.
So it looks like tonight will be our last night on the Great Divide Mountain Bike Route. We are here in the Hachita Community Center in our tent. The Biology students that were here when we got here left with their snakes and went camping, so we have the place all to ourselves. Kinda nice since this is our last night.
Good night, Hachita. Antelope Wells… we can’t wait to meet you tomorrow.
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