Saturday, July 9, 2011
UNDERSTANDING PEDAL POWER
The next morning we got up and had ourselves some pancakes, ham and eggs and packed up camp to hit the road again. The only problem was that my right knee was killing me, which was funny because my left one was the one that had gotten a little achy at the end of our ride the previous day. We got onto our bikes, and needless to say, our tailbones were none-too-pleased about it either (seeing as how both Jason and I have fractured our tailbones in the past). We decided that we were definitely going to need some drugs to get through this second day. About 20 miles outside of camp, we rolled into a little town with a store that was open on Sunday morning. Bless them. We got some drugs, and thank goodness we did because that was pretty much what got me through the day.
At our first food stop, I was really looking forward to getting off the bike for a while and laying out. Unfortunately, it was still freezing. The clouds hadn't burned off yet for the day and there was a slight breeze. This was fine for while we were on the bikes, but armed only with a very light weight, very breathable jacket (thin enough to compact down to the size of a baseball to store in my small Camelbak backpack) it was far too cold to be sitting still. Laying on the grass shaking in the cold turned out to be surprisingly less appealing than being on the bike and warm, so as soon as we finished getting some food into us, we left.
Stopping for a bathroom break a little later in the day, we decide to check the air pressure in our tires to find that one of Jason's tires has a small ballooned spot in the side wall. Not good. Armed with spare tubes but not spare tires, Jason talks with the bike repair tent there to find that they had only high end tires for sale, and they didn't take credit cards and I didn't even have my debit/ATM card to withdraw money with. So with a limited amount of cash between the two of us, Jason takes the advice of another bicyclist and folds up a dollar bill inside the wall of his tire to add some stability and to keep the tube from pushing out on that weakened spot of the sidewall. This seems to work, luckily, but I'm not thrilled with the idea of him riding around on a faulty tire. If it decided to blow, it could mean a pretty nasty wreck at the speeds we were going. Luckily about 10 or 15 miles down the road, we came across another bike repair tent with tires we could afford, so we get Jason fixed up and back in business. All this tire repair business ended up taking about an hour out of our day, but we trudged on.