I so wanted to get up early this morning and get on the road by 8 but my body was having none of it. I’m finding that I’m needing around 10 hours sleep to allow my aches and pains to recover, which I still can’t get used to. I normally suffice on 4 or 5 hours sleep.
So I set off at 12 after making do with a full body wash with freezing cold water. I also tried shaving but my one and only razor was packed with hair. I took procrastination to a new level by extracting all the hairs from the blade with a needle and high water pressure. That took around 20 minutes but at least the razor had returned to full functionality.
There was nowhere to eat in Harrison, so I gobbled a few granola bars, raisins and a few mouthfuls of honey, and set off towards the next town 10 miles away for breakfast/brunch/lunch. I arrived in Van Tassell after an hours riding ready to eat my way through some cattle. Population of Van Tassell – 17. Places to eat in Van Tassell – 0. At least I was finally in Wyoming.
The next town was Lusk, another 20 miles away. I was hungry, but not starving. I inhaled a couple more granola bars and more raisins and hit the road again.
The main issue was my brain was now thinking about food; constantly. My belly would grumble and I kept looking at the calorie counter on the GPS going up. I had burnt over 2,000 calories, I was hoping that last nights lasagna would keep me going. I gulped plenty of water to try and suppress my hunger pangs and it worked fairly well. Lusk was looming, even though the climb had been around 600ft so far.
Lusk was in sight, just half a mile away, and I coasted in slumped across my handlebars. The first thing I saw was “The Pizza Place” and I was in the mood for something filling.
As I ordered the pizza the woman looked at me with a puzzled look and said that the pizza was a large one. I turned to my bike propped up outside and mentioned I would be needing the calories. She then informed me I could take some of it in a box if I needed to as it would be too much to eat at once. Challenge accepted.
I blogged and slurped on my Mountain Dew until the pizza came out. It was a little large, but I’d seen bigger. After devouring six slices in as many minutes I left the last two on the side whilst I let my body do some digesting. A couple of minutes later the woman came around with a box. Thanks, but no thanks, my pride was at stake. The other two pieces were gone within the next few minutes and she came back a while later to say that she was mighty impressed.
Edit. The pizza was a 12 inches square, deep pan, ham and pineapple pizza. The toppings were generous and plentiful, not like some other pizzas I have sampled. I was civil and ate it with a knife and fork to reduce the greasiness on my stubby digits as I also wrote up a blog post.
Waddling out of the pizza place with my waistband a little tighter, I found a grocery store to stock up on a few bits of food. I wanted to get a few substantial things because I’m not risking going hungry again, the useful towns in Wyoming are around 30 miles apart, sometimes further.
Once again I wanted to ride a minimum of 45 miles today so I was soon back on the road with a couple of options available. There were a couple of long climbs coming out of Lusk but after an hour of what seemed like constant uphill, the gradient turned in my favour. Trudging up the hills seems to bring out a sense of focus and determination and as the wind had dropped I actually enjoyed climbing them in a sick, perverted way.
There was a train track running adjacent to the road for most of the day and it was used soley for freight. The trains were massive in length – everyone knows that Americans love to do everything bigger. One train was lugging 138 carriages of coal! Yes I counted. As you can probably imagine little things like counting carriages give my mind a break from the riding and sobbing.
On the descent I was averaging over 20mph and I soon come across the minute “town” of Lost Springs. Astoundingly there was a little park with shelter, restrooms, electricity and most bizarre of all, open WiFi! Craziness. Since I had hit the 60 mile mark and I had hit a gem of a spot, I was camping here tonight.
As the evening progressed I wrote a little more and uploaded photos to Facebook. Around 21:00 a car pulled up and I met Mike and Ann who decided to camp here too. They went and spoke to one of the four residents of Lost Springs and found out that all four of them hate each other. I found this to be utterly hilarious.
What made it slightly more bizarre though was a poster in the toilet. One of the residents was on the sex offenders register for attempted sexual assault. Now that is obviously no laughing matter but I waited in my tent – nervously but full of anticipation.