During the night we heard a lot of grunting (no not what you are thinking!) and scuffing outside our tent. We were told to make sure that any food was stored well above ground level as there are Javalina Pigs here. They are not actual pigs but are members of the peccary family, 40 – 60 pounds (that is one expensive small pig) and around 18″ high.
Our food was stored in the back of a Richard’s pickup who is on the plot next to ours, thank you Richard. Continue reading
A rapid pack away and on the road by 7.30 (a nice time to start a day, the wind still still, the temperature cool and the roads quieter). A wave goodbye to Mark our beer supplier from yesterday and 5, 4, 3, 2, 1 go (pretend you have the thunderbirds on when you read this).
As our site had no facilities a very early morning coffee was in order to access the toilets! The tent was nice and dry and we were away by 7.30. We are going 28 miles today to the National Forest Site at White Spur, just outside Prescott. There is a height gain of 1600 ft today but steady as she goes is our watchword for the day (even though it is more than one word).
Wee stop! (No not small)
Continuing along highway 89, a good shoulder (you are probably very bored by me saying this but if you cycle you will know how important it is, big is best). We rapidly (yes we did cycle quite quickly for us) reached Chino, it is another of these long towns in this case about 8 miles long. It has all the essential shops KFC, McDonalds, Arby’s and even the occasional real shop. Continue reading
Leaping out of bed into a nice shower is lovely and not something a camper does well (no real opportunity to practice on a campground). Then a continental breakfast supplied by the Grand Motel went down a treat, including a tea and coffee.
We started off with a brief encounter with Route 66 (around 3 miles) before it gets eaten by the I40. Unfortunatly we have 15 miles to cycle down the I40 ourselves, but as with all the interstates it has a very good shoulder. There does seem to be a lot of large trucks on the though, probably because it goes straight to Los Angeles and they are all delivering the vast quantities of essentials (burgers, fries etc) to the city. The truck drivers are very good though, they will move over into the second lane when they pass us.
Just a nice restful day no pressure to even move (just to get food maybe, or alcohol for sure). You may notice the flurry of posts, it is the first good WiFi for quite a while.
When we started the Great divide, it was billed as this great remote lonely adventure where you are likely to be eaten by a bear or be lost in pine forests for weeks on end. In actual fact it was a very accessible route, you still needed care but you only felt remote on very rare occasions. The Grand Canyon connector we have found parts to be very remote indeed, long distances between stores (and the stores often poorly stocked), campgrounds and most importantly water.
I have not even managed to take many pictures today but here are a couple.
We wanted an earlier start today, but we were thwarted by no water. In Valle all the water is shipped in via large containers and someone had forgotten to order / deliver yesterday, no water until later today for the whole campground. We did manage to get the campgtound store to let us have 4 litres so we could at least get on our way, but of course no toilets worked.
Yabadabadoo said the sign as we left, todays cycle is a steady uphill but nothing steep, so steady as she goes (who she is I am not very sure though).
A chilly start to today, the hiker / biker site finished up home to three other cyclists (one off to Chile, the others off to Las Vegas), and six walkers doing the Arizona Trail.
Just about packed and ready to go
A rush free and puncture free start today, very undulating describes the route we will follow. Around 25 miles long plus any detours to Grand Canyon viewpoints.
Some Grand Canyon facts
When we started out the traffic was very light (just floating past), even without any shoulder (all the national parks do not seem to have any cycle lanes on their roads, it is all about the car). Continue reading
A pre Dawn (I am not sure who she is but I have seen her and Quel before, this is subtle by the way, think about it) get up and shockingly I have a flat tyre. An extra 30 minutes spent on this, yet another puncture from the reinforcing for car tyre walls.
We did not get away as early as we liked but made a good start, an excellent shoulder and easy cycling for the first 10 miles. Then two things happened firstly the road steepened considerable and secondly we gained a very gusting headwind. Continue reading
In a motel it does not take long to get ready, so we were straight off. Packing an extra 10 litres of water in case we have to camp by the roadside. A short drop down to the Colorado river (this is where the Grand Canyon starts and continues for 277 miles) crossing the Navajo bridge.
The Grand Canyon Starts
It was here we entered the Navajo Reservation Lands. Continue reading