Bike America 2K4 Diary - May 20-25, 2004May 26, 2004
Baylor University sophomores Chad Anderson and Drew Mitchell are spending more than half their summer bicycling 3,700 miles across the United States to raise funds and awareness for Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Texas.
Their journey, called Bike America 2K4, will take the business majors through California, Nevada, Utah, Colorado, Kansas, Missouri, Kentucky and Virginia. By the time they complete their trip in mid-July, the students hope to have raised $37,840 - or $10 a mile - for Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Texas, where Anderson serves as a Big Brother. For more information or to donate, go to Bike America 2K4.
As they pedal across America, Anderson and Mitchell are filing a diary from the road so fellow Baylor students, faculty, staff and alumni can keep up with their progress. Alums along the way are providing support and lodging for the students. (See their route here.)
Thursday, May 20, 2004 - Carson City, Silver Springs, NV
After the library visit in Carson City, Nev., we went to the Port of Subs and got two 12" sandwiches donated for the trip. Then at 6 p.m., we left to get as far as we could towards Fallon, Nev. We ended up making it close to Silver City where we saw we were coming into a storm. We biked about 30 miles in an hour because we had a tail wind and flat land.
We then saw a church from the highway and a home behind it, so we decided to stop in and see if we could sleep outside the church in the back. Chad knocked on the door, and Nancy answered. She and Pastor Jim graciously offered us the church to sleep in for the night and also a nice warm shower and a home-cooked meal. We got to spend time learning about the area and sharing stories with Jim and Nancy. We stayed the night in Silver Springs, Nev., at Pastor Jim's Lakeview Baptist Church. Jim and Nancy are awesome and provided us a great blessing to the trip.
So, that wraps it up today. Beautiful thunderstorms off in the distance at a beautiful city in Nevada. Sweet Dreams!
Friday, May 21, 2004 - Stagecoach, Fallon, Sand Springs, Drumm Summit, East Gate, Middle Gate, NV
Today was another crazy day. We started around Stagecoach, Nev., at the church where we stayed. We then biked a good ways to Fallon, Nev., where we arrived around 11 a.m. We looked for a bike shop but never found one. We then stopped at the McDonald's and got a free meal for the both of us. I then went into Raley's and tried to get more groceries donated like we did in Carson City, but instead they donated a box of 48 snickers for us. It has been fun chuggin' those things along. When we ran into Mike, a bicyclist who has ridden the same trail, on May 20, he said the best way to get the calories you need, since you lose about 700/hour, was to dip candy bars in peanut butter.
It was hot out there today. We went through Sand Springs, Drumm Summit and East Gate, Nev. Around Middle Gate we stopped at the little bar and got water. The man in there was very friendly and offered us a place to camp, but we decided we had to make it farther. Drew's knee started hurting real bad around here, so the rest of the afternoon was tough riding. We went about 110 miles today so we could get out of Nevada as soon as possible.
We pulled over to camp at a rest stop and cooked some macaroni and cheese and brought all the gear into our tent because of the threat of rain. It is now 8 p.m., and we are getting to bed after a long day of riding and talking to the crazy guy in Fallon, Nev., who was telling us we would probably get hit by a car going up the mountains. We also blew it by passing three cute girls coming our way on bikes, who had done the same trip as us but started in Virginia. Got a chance to talk to them for just a few minutes, but the sun was hot and we had to move on. Anyway, need to heal our bodies tonight. Goodnight.
Saturday, May 22, 2004 - Carroll Summit, Austin, Eureka, NV
Well, today was another long biking day as we rode more than 115 miles. We started the morning off just down the hill from Carroll Summit at about 7,000 feet elevation. It was freezing cold when we woke up around 6 a.m., which is the second day so far that we woke up on schedule. We ate a protein bar with peanut butter and started biking.
We had our fleeces on for most of the day. Drew's knee felt a little better today after the night's rest. We then reached the top of Carroll Summit to our surprise, because we thought by taking the alternate route we were going around the summit, but instead it meant the alternate route to going to the top. It was okay, but just took longer than we wanted it to.
We then biked down and traveled throughout the day going up and over the summits and through the valleys. We stopped in Austin, Nev., for lunch and talked to an older couple who were doing the same thing as us but taking about five months longer to do it. We then biked on and eventually got to our target city of Eureka, Nev., about 7,500 feet in elevation. Very tired, sore, and hungry, we stopped and luckily this very nice restaurant, called Owl's Casino Restaurant, gave us both rib sandwiches, salads and drinks for free.
We then biked about a mile past Eureka to an RV park, but we had to stop at the rest area about 300 feet away because a wedding reception was renting out the park. We still used their facilities though, as one guy asked us to come in. We gladly accepted the offer and are now sitting at a nice table listening to the country music over at the wedding party.
A rough day was Day 6, on the body and mind, but a great night and good food ended it very nicely. Almost one week of biking. Hopefully the bodies will hold up.
Sunday, May 23, 2004 - Eureka, Pinto Summit, Pancake Summit, Robinson Summit, Ely, NV
Today has been another very interesting day. We started off the morning from the rest stop in Eureka, Nev. It was pretty warm as we climbed out of the tent about 7:10 a.m. We packed our bikes and headed for the road, eating a protein bar and some granola bars with peanut butter on them. We then made it over Pinto Summit and then over Pancake Summit, and then made our way up our last summit of Robinson and then down into Ely, Nev., around 2 p.m. On the way today we saw about a 3-inch scorpion crossing the road.
When we got into Ely, we ate at My Papa's Pizza where they donated us a 12" pizza. We then went to a few hotels and luckily found the Motel 6 that gave us a guest pass for the night and let us stay for free. Once we got our room, #114, we biked up to Arby's and got two #3's donated for dinner. We then came back to the hotel where we showered, were able to wash our clothes in the sink, and talked to our parents for a couple hours. We also got to enjoy watching the Lakers lose the Timberwolves in the playoffs.
Anyway, a wonderful day it has been. Very blessed to be in a hotel tonight as a storm pushes its way just north of us. Talk to ya'll tomorrow.
Monday, May 24, 2004 - Ely, Baker, NV, Garrison, UT
Today we had a hard time getting out of bed - yes, an actual bed - because you never know when you'll be in a real bed again. The Motel 6 was a very nice treat after a weeks worth of biking.
Today was Day 8 of the trip and our goal was to ride 100 miles to camp so we could make it easily to Cedar City, Utah, on Thursday. We left Ely at about 7:30 a.m. and are hoping for a good breakfast at McDonald's, but they were closed due to equipment failure. We then biked 110 miles to where we are now, the Wah Hah Wah Hah Valley. On the way, we faced some bad winds but made it over Sacramento Pass and enjoyed getting into the state of Utah. Finally good to be out of the state of Nevada.
We stopped in Baker, Nev., before we crossed over, however, and ate at a little restaurant where the lady there donated us a 12" pizza. We enjoyed the atmosphere there, but the heat was getting to Chad. We then biked on, stopped in the first city in Utah and got ice water from a nice lady because it was the last chance to get water for 75 miles. We then biked on in our first time in Utah as we found it to be much more beautiful there.
We then pushed ourselves, trying to beat a storm that was coming our way. As we decided to make our way over one more pass, we saw the storm right on our tail. It was hard going uphill because we were out of energy. A few drops of water hit us but just a light sprinkle. We made it over the pass and raced down the hill into the next valley where we saw a bunch of trees and little house, the only thing in the whole valley 20 miles long. We decided to see if we could make to the house and get away from the storm, so we made our way down the rocky dirt road. We fell a few times on the soft sand but finally reached the house after about 3/4 mile.
We knocked on the door and a man and some women answered. We asked them if we could put our bikes in the garage for the night to get them out of the storm and stake our tent out by the house. They said yes. We ended up cooking dinner in the garage. After a big day of biking about 110 miles and little food, we each ate two Carnation Instant Breakfasts, two oatmeals, two Ramen noodles, beans and Snickers, and drank a lot of water. We then fell asleep around 10:30 p.m. because of the time change. During the night, we woke up about 2 a.m. with wild winds blowing over 40 mph. Our tent felt like it would take off any second as the walls were banging all around us. It rained and stormed like crazy. Good thing our bikes were safe.
Tuesday, May 25, 2004 - Utah
Stay tuned to find out about the great day and night we spent in Cedar City. :)
Drew and Chad