Day 8 – Halfway to Council

Wed 9th June 2010

After returning to the campsite last night I discovered that both our neighbours had donated huge amounts of pizza to us so the beef jerky was spared. We ate what we could, having already had our dinner but some was left over. Chris decided he would have it for his breakfast and left it in the porch of his tent. In the middle of the night Chris realized he was no longer alone and woke up to find a local cat enjoying the rest of the pizza. Chris tried to salvage what he could but it was too late. At least it wasn’t a grizzly.

When we finally got to bed it began to rain and then rained hard all night. In the morning we had to keep everything in the tents until it was packed and safe from the rain. That was quite difficult in a small tent not large enough to swing a cat. (Chris should know all about that)

After a cereal breakfast we set off at 6:30am and the rain eased. The ride to the Idaho border at Brownlee was very picturesque and mostly downhill. It was easy riding and not too warm.

Lake view

Great views this morning - not unlike Scotland

At Brownlee there was a steep and long climb up to 4,100ft and at the bottom the sun came out to make it very warm. We climbed it without any problems but when we reached the top some threatening clouds were rolling towards us. Within minutes the heavens opened and we struggled to get our waterproofs on in time. We were stuck in a thunder storm with really heavy rain and it seemed to be following us. We made our way to the town of Cambridge and rested  there, finally eating the beef jerky, while the storm passed over.

Cambridge, Idaho

Sheltering in Cambridge


I think a bad knee is the least of his worries

Alan's bike

Alan's Bike - We'll show Sherman tomorrow

Council Idaho

Approaching Council - will this road ever end?

The final 20miles to Council were hard work into a headwind but we arrived at 5:10pm despite the clocks going forward an hour at the Idaho border (we are now 7hrs behind UK time). After buying our food we noticed a very dark cloud that was heading our way. A local lady told us there was a flash flood warning for the town until midnight. Unsure what to do we played safe and booked into a motel. It was the right choice because within 5 mins of being there the worst storm we had every seen passed over with hail the size of marbles. So glad were weren’t in the campsite.

Thunder storm

The storm from our motel room

Before I close this blog Chris would like to pass on a tip: When wearing open toed sandals, do not pour boiling water into a cup from a saucepan without a pouring lip when the cup is directly above your toes. A good tip if you ask me.

Total Mileage – 79 miles

Time in Saddle – 7 hrs 28 mins

Total Climbing – 4,207 ft

Bananas – 4 each today. Total for ride will be posted tomorrow.


  1. I so love reading your posts, Alan. It’s the last thing I do before heading for bed each night. They always give me a chuckle. Glad to hear you are both maintaining your sense of humor through the travails of cross-country cycling.

  2. I am sorry we missed you if you tried to Skype. Loving the updates – we have rain too, maybe not quite so dramatic though! Um, did you pack a razor?! All fine at home and everyone missing you but very proud of you. Emily is planning an official greeting with home made cookies on your return having done her hostess badge at Brownies yesterday. Not sure she has grasped how long she is going to have to wait to do that though – I think I will just avoid telling her unless she askes again.

  3. Great pictures Alan,espeacially of that storm(Knockout).I look forward to reading about your progress every day.When I cycled the End to End with Robert my face looked a bit like Chris’s.Daily mileage here 10!If I feel up to it!!

  4. Aww dad i think you secretly left the pizza out on purpose so the cat would come to your tent!! the game is up! ha

    God we are having really bad rain here but not as bad as you! great to hear that people are feeling sorry for you and are now donating you food! Good if you are tight like you dad..saves you money buying your own,,he he!
    Glad you hear you continue to make great progress and i assume that dads knee is feeling better.
    Take care
    Love you

  5. Enjoying reading your updates – keep ‘em coming!
    We’ll be offline for a week as we’re off for a well earned holiday in Fiji. Will catch up on progress when we return.
    Keep on keeping on………….Helen, Craig & Jacob

  6. Chris, couldn’t you put the cat on the bike and bring it home with you?
    Hope the weather clears up.
    Stay safe
    Love Babs

  7. great to read your adventures in sustrans towers. If only they’d let me out for 50 days…
    Now, if you’d done it on a brompton, that would be impressive. Rith Nichol – rememeber her- is doing the end to end on her brommie!
    Look after that knee Chris , you’ve only got one spare one.

  8. Hi,
    I look forward to reading your updates each day and the whole family read Alan’s blogs. The photos and news makes it feel that we are all part of it with you, without being out in the rain cycling!! Your website is one of the best I have ever read regarding journeys like this – very impressed. Will Chris ever write something himself or is he still on crayons????
    Continue to keep well and enjoy everything.

  9. Alternatively, eat the cat. I’ve heard Gran’s got a great recipe for cat pie.

  10. Hi guys – loving the blog and great pics!! – I’ve always wanted to see America ;) Hope all is going well for you, and your knee improves Chris, sounds painful ….shall continue watching the updates with interest (and amusement)……..
    love and hugs
    Lesley xxxx

  11. Having known Alan for far too long, I am shocked that the journey is being completed without a federal type reserve of tea bags…obviously worried about all that wieght, although you can buy perforated ones to keep the pounds down! Keep on truckin…

  12. Better to eat the cat after it has eaten the pizza, that way you get your pizza back!!

  13. At least cycling along the byways gets you warm. It – winter – has arrived here down under. Its been minus something for 5 days here around dawn, next thing will be ‘its snowing’. Good Luck champ, sorry the cat is out of the bag.
    Northam Wa. Better than the american girl upside down in the southern indian ocean.

  14. Second bite of the cherry. lead photo looks like Scotland all right – bit like Loch nessy for mine. As for roads that never end, a group of rotarians and supporters rode around Australia last year and in several places the road is dead straight for 4oo miles.