A long day ahead, Rice Crispies with water have really lost their appeal now. Anyway the track continued on from where we had left it and it still looked most rocky. A steady start then.
The morning was clear and cloudless but another cold start, the nightime temperatures are all around zero at the moment. Plod plod plod then Medicine Lodge Road (the one we were on) stopped following Medicine Lodge Creek, you know this means only one thing, upwards toil, so we toiled upwards.
The road changed to Medicine Lodge – Big Sheep Creek Back Country Byway, what a great name. If I had a firstborn or maybe a dog they would be called this.
The surface was poor, but it is being repaired from here all the way to the top. A large wagon just seemed to be scraping the surface with a huge blade similar to a snowplough, with a large water tanker occasionally damping down the surface. Did I mention the dust today is the worst yet?
Eventually the top arrived (anout 2 hours late) at 7340 ft, which was well below what the map said but who is complaining? We then had many miles of down, which did undulate quite a bit (remember undulating means lots of up sneaking in when you are not looking).
Then once across the plain we started to follow Big Sheep Creek down a lovely river valley.
More roadworks, this time they were replacing a bridge and installing fibre optic cable. Amazing given its remoteness, 30 miles from the closest road then another 50 miles to a reasonable sized town. Apparently the school bus makes this journey twice a day to collect 2 pupils.
Then suddenly we (I) had a serious problem with my insides, they wanted to become outsides in an explosive manner (I would say use your imagination, but don’t) I felt faint as well.
Janet bravely hurled herself in front of a passing car, unbelievably it stopped rather than run her over. Carl and Carol got out, at this point I collapsed in a heap thankfully in their car. Janet locked the bikes to a pole (how convenient to have an eastern european there at the time) threw our bags in the back of the car and we drove or rather Carol drove 12 miles to Lima where we booked into a motel.
Carol and Carl went home and got their chevvy truck, Carol and Carl are in their 70’s, then came back and drove all the way up into the hills to retrieve our bikes. They have this massive Caravan / RV they tow with the truck.
They were yet another pair of truly kind selfless people who you would definitely want to meet if you were having a moment on a track miles from town.
I had recovered by now so just to check we walked over the road to the diner and ate a pair of burgers (that is one each) and fries, just to make sure I had lovely slice of homemade apple pie with icecream. The best thing was there were no intestinal consequences.