Retrofit vengeance

Hooray! The winds have at last calmed down. Boohoo! It's getting colder again. But not to worry as the ride today was very short at only 36 miles. I had been scoping out Scottsbluff as a destination ever since I popped my tire last week after leaving North Platte. It is the only town that has a bike shop in the area. Had the weather cooperated a bit (or if I had been a supercyclist) I could have made the trip from North Platte to Scottsbluff in a day or two. Instead, it's taken me twice as long and that doesn't include my two days' rest in Ogallala.

It was easy enough finding the bike shop because the town is small and everybody knows everybody else. I asked Sonny, the store owner, to retrofit my bike with new tires, tubes and spares. I wanted them to be the toughest grade he had to give me a little respite from these thorns. Not only did he put on Kevlar reinforced tires and tubes so thick they look like engine hoses but the old tubes were cut up and now serve as an additional lining between the tubes and tires. The tab for all this came in at a steep $115 which brings my total on-trip bike upgrades/repairs to well over $500, nearly the original cost of the bike itself. When I left the shop the bike ride felt very stiff as if the tires were wooden. But I also have a lot of confidence dealing with nature's little devious spikes. Heck, I now have a feeling I can ride over a tank mine and these tires would not even notice ;-)

But by now it's late afternoon and too late in the day to attempt riding to my next destination which is in Wyoming. Earlier in the day I had been riding along when a minivan pulled over. A lady comes out and asks me if I'd like a free place to stay the night. As if she needed to ask, ha! She gave me directions to her home and I hope to make it there tomorrow since now I'm only about 60 miles away.

Day 49