Lots has happened since our zero-mile day in Del Norte. We forgot a charger in the middle of nowhere and were contacted by a CDT hiker that found it the next day. By chance, John had left our Librarians on Bikes business card in the case. We told the hiker to keep it or pass it on to someone who needed it. We wild camped among a herd of angry cows in San Isabel National Forest. We rode up Marshall Pass, a pleasant 16-mile railroad-grade ascent followed by a welcome and memorable 25-mile descent into Salida. We spent the night at the Salida Hostel and bought a NEW STOVE (earlier fix didn’t stay fixed) and now have hot food once again.
The last three days have all been short mile days. Riding out of Salida was a brutal 14 mile uphill, so we stopped at 2pm, after only 22 miles. Pulled out our chairs and made camp in Long Gulch among the cows (these seemed much happier than previously mentioned cows). Wrote letters, made notes, played some cards, and made bean-noodle soup for dinner. Next day was a quick 44 miles into Fairplay, CO, where we beat the cold rain and spent the afternoon eating good food, grateful to be cozy in our tent and sleeping bags. Went off-route due to snow pack at Boreas Pass and climbed Hoosier Pass for the second time in two years (part of the TransAm Route). I think I can say that today has been the best day of the trip so far-a fitting Father’s Day tribute to John. We made it to Frisco early, had some good coffee, and headed over to April and Jeff’s townhouse. Upon arrival, Jeff told us we had about 20 minutes to shower before “a big surprise.” Best surprise ever, he had arranged for us both to get hour-long massages! And this was John’s first ever massage. We also had a wonderful dinner, did our laundry, and are sleeping in a real bed tonight.
The plan is to keep riding for another six days before our next zero-mile day in Rawlins, WY. We will be staying with a Warm Showers host in Steamboat Springs but otherwise there aren’t many towns between here and Rawlins. We’re well-stocked with supplies, sleeping well tonight and heading back out in the morning. Until next week!