Friday, July 11, 2014

July 10 (Day 191) - Really getting tired of the bike, a quickie with Nebraska, cow wrangling

Maybe it's because I have biked for 191 days straight, maybe it's because I have biked a very large number of miles this week, or maybe it because my cell phone (aka my lifeline) has not worked since I entered Wyoming, but I am at my breaking point with the bike. I really want nothing to do with it for an extended period of time. My legs are tired, my arms and wrists hurt from the pounding doled out by the predominantly dirt Wyoming roads, and my ass feels much like that of the Brazilian soccer team after the Germany match. I thought the cell reception problems that plagued me last night would vanish when I got to the "big city" of Cheyenne; This was not the case. My phone has been rendered useless. The Pony Express is a more efficient method of communication at this juncture. This makes biking around an unfamiliar city a royal headache as I much keep finding places with internet access as issues arise. I can see that the Wyoming crossing is going to be beautiful but also very challenging. There isn't likely to be be much support (people, stores, food, water etc). This will make the crossing more stressful than it will be enjoyable since I must be constantly aware of where I will find food, water, and shelter. Hopefully some interesting roadside birds will surface to distract me from the pain I am sure to experience and the long distances I am sure to curse. The good news is that Queen Sonia will arrive tomorrow night, and she will provide much needed moral support during the next week or so.

47 miles today

Today I moved west a short bit from Pine Bluffs to Cheyenne. Since I skipped Nebraska yesterday, I biked the extra mile back to the east into Nebraska from Pine Bluffs so that it would be officially included in my big year. From the WY-NE border I saw a meadowlark on the Nebraska side; Hence I officially birded Nebraska in 2014! I spent a bit of time on dirt roads looking for Sharp-tailed grouse during the first half of the ride to Cheyenne. As the wind picked up and the whole ride was uphill, I abandoned the dirt route after about 15 miles to get onto paved roads and save my body. Needless to say, there was no birding being done along the I-80 service road.

Just a quick visit!

Since tomorrow is Friday in Cheyenne, I am hoping to find a Rodeo or something to do in the evening. I have never been to a Rodeo before, and I imagine no official visit to Wyoming is complete without bucking broncos and whatnot. I know for a fact Queen Sonia likes the rodeo! She's gonna kill me for these photos.......

Yee haw!

I did have a great evening tonight with my hosts. Their two teenagers are lots of fun, and they even showed me how to wrangle cows in their backyard. They have offered to house Sonia, her friend Maggie, and me tomorrow, so there will certainly be more cow wrangling in the future! There is some big thunder forecast for Wyoming tomorrow, so tomorrow will be a very lazy and much needed off day (minus cow wrangling!). I think it will function well to recharge my batteries, both physically and mentally.

C'mon, moooooooooooove cow!


  1. Please give yourself some time OFF! You deserve it. You are NOT a machine. You are doing awesome, but please take care of your spiritual side. Do what Sonia tells you to do! Any woman who will mount a brass duck is worth keeping happy in my book. Don't forget to have some fun. Your A$$ and Brazil will live to rule another day.

    The Feral Cyclist

    PS That Heifer looks asleep....

    1. I second the suggestion by anonymous! Look at what you've accomplished in 6 months -- nearly 500 birds! Congratulations!! You deserve and need a break. Just enjoy what Wyoming has to offer -- and just enjoy having Sonia. Don't mess it up by continuously fretting!

  2. Good luck with your upcoming Wyoming crossing. It will be a tough ride, like West Texas 2.0. Make sure to take as many rest days as you need before you conquer it. I'd suggest hanging out in Laramie with Sonia instead of Cheyenne. Much better town if you're into internet access, NPR, wifi, good food, etc.

  3. Is it possible to cut south and take US-40 through northern Colorado instead. This route has more services, is more scenic, and sets you up for a Uintas hit on your way into Utah.

    1. Also has good options for Sharp-tailed Grouse and Greater Sage-Grouse

  4. I like the newly posted fund-raising total!
    Steve B. from Cincinnati

  5. I have so enjoyed following your adventure by reading your blog each day. I posted on WYOBIRDS@HOME.EASE.LSOFT.COM asking for information on Sharp-tailed Grouse & Gray Partridge in the Cheyenne area for you, so you may get some emails from Wyoming birders. Good luck!
    Jan in Billings, MT